A MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) is a free online course available for anyone to enroll. The Orpheus Institute launched its first MOOC in January 2019 and released updated versions in September 2019 and 2020.

Artistic Research in Music - an Introduction

a MOOC curated by the Orpheus Institute

MOOCs provide an affordable and flexible way to learn new skills, advance your career and deliver quality educational experiences at scale. The first MOOC on Artistic Research in Music offers an introduction to the most relevant research tools, techniques and methodologies as well as the key concepts of artistic research in music. The course is available on edX, which is the leading platform for online learning and education.

Artistic Research in Music – an Introduction is a free online course that ran for the first time in 2019 as an instructor-paced MOOC, with a new module being released every two weeks, from 28 January until 5 May 2019. The second and third updated runs were available as a self-paced MOOC. It is expected for a learner to spend 6 to 8 hours of effort per section. By the end of the course, through completing the assignments, learners will effectively have produced a complete research proposal.

Facts & figures:

  • 23 speakers (Orpheus researchers and guests)
  • 62 videos (knowledge clips, interviews and more)
  • 400+ minutes of video
  • 6 assessments and 6 practical assignments
  • 5500+ people have enrolled worldwide


Course Staff Orpheus Institute:

Jonathan Impett, Paulo de Assis, Tom Beghin, Catherine Laws and Luk Vaes.


Heloisa Amaral, Nicholas Brown, Marcel Cobussen, Nicolas Collins, Darla Crispin, Lucia D'Errico, Daniela Fantechi, George E. Lewis, Vincent Meelberg, Sally Jane Norman, Stefan Östersjö, Ian Pace, Juan Parra Cancino, Deniz Peters, Gertrud Sandqvist, Ellen Ugelvik, Cathy van Eck and Matthew Wright.

🎬 Watch the trailer:

About the course

Artistic research is one of the most vibrant areas of creative thought in music – in the academic and professional worlds, but also among artists of all kinds who want to develop their practice by working and thinking coherently through its implications, questions, context and potential. Artistic research (along with its various cognate versions) puts musicians themselves – their practices, their knowledge, experience and imagination – at the centre of the production of new understanding, knowledge, vision and discourses for music. In the current moment of great musical richness and diversity, this is more important than ever. Future or historical, acoustic or technological, performer, composer or producer – if you want to participate in this exciting and expanding field (or just want to know what’s going on) this course is for you.

The course is curated by the Orpheus Institute, Ghent – a world-leading centre for artistic research in music. Their artist-researchers are joined by experts from international institutions across the globe, who share their experience and understanding. The course is intended to be accessible to musicians with an expert artistic practice and some engagement with its theory, history and context – as well as an inquiring mind. Masters or advanced Bachelors students will find this relevant, as well as researchers beginning their PhD, teachers at conservatories or universities, and independent artists wanting to engage with this exciting field.

Learning outcomes and objectives

  • The key concepts of artistic research in music
  • How to refine potential research questions and lines of development in your own practice
  • Some of the most relevant research tools, techniques, and methodologies, and how these might relate to your work
  • How not to be afraid of theory! Instead, you will understand how it can be a vital tool in developing a coherent understanding of the context and potential of your artistic practice
  • Ways to develop a coherent reflective approach to expanding your practice
  • The range and potential of different modes of presenting your work and thought
  • How to produce a complete research proposal


  1. Introduction to Artistic Research in Music
  2. Finding focus: articulating questions, topics and objectives
  3. Scoping and locating the project
  4. Methodology
  5. Negotiating with theory, creating a discourse
  6. Documentation, dissemination and returning research to practice

By the end of this course, through completing the assignments of this course you will effectively have produced a complete research proposal.


Mooc Course Image Artistic Research In Music
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