Master Thesis Guidelines

Master Thesis Guidelines

The Master of Music program at Princess Galyani Vadhana Institute of Music provides students with the opportunity to explore new approaches to music. The program is designed to help students deepen their musical knowledge and skills through a process of questioning, understanding and sharing of their creative work. The curriculum is designed to bring theory and practice into a reciprocal relationship, where each informs and enlivens the other.

The program focuses equally on creative practice and research. Dissemination is an important part of our vision and all students are expected to share their work through public performances or other types of public and community outcomes (site-specific installations, music therapy, workshops, radio broadcasts, podcasts, online media, etc.)

The course aims to foster interconnections between the related fields of performance, composition-creation, pedagogy and musicology, as well as contribute to the development of interdisciplinary practices and applications of music, technology, and related fields.

The curriculum is designed to help your development through the conjunction of three  goals:

1-Artistic development: you will receive private lessons by teachers of your main subject. The course welcomes practitioners from any music-related field.
Your main interest may include music performance, improvisation, pedagogy, composition and technology, the course is designed to appeal to performers and music makers from various backgrounds including classical, folk, traditional, jazz, electronic, and experimental music. Students will explore ways of bridging the gaps between different musical languages and modes of expression.

2-Research and innovation: You will choose a topic around which to base your project and conduct your research.  Through the guidance of your supervisor, you will identify the right methodologies to develop your artistic research, choosing appropriate electives to develop relevant skills along the way. 

3 – Professional Development & Social Integration:  As part of our philosophy, it is absolutely essential that musicians should integrate their practice within the social fabric of their time. Throughout the course, you will be given opportunities to engage with society. Those experiences will allow you to develop meaningful ways through which to connect with the world through music.

Learning Outcomes

All  Master students  at PGVIM are expected to meet learning outcomes responding to the following aspects:

  • Practical Skills
  • Artistic Approaches
  • Independent Learning
  • Relevance Knowledge
  • Critical Thinking
  • Research Skills
  • Creativity
  • Interpersonal Skills
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Language & Communication Skills
  • IT Skills
  • Ethic
  • Social Engagement

Possible Research Areas

Students will be introduced to a variety of ways through which to investigate and research the world through creative musical practice during the first year through the subjects ‘ Philosophy, Cultures and Aesthetics’, ‘Notation Literacy’ and ‘Interdisciplinary Studies’ as well as selected electives.  As the students design their proposal at the end of the second semester, their research area may include:

  • Art of interpretation: Historically/ Contextually Informed Performance Practice
  • Creative Practices: Composition, Performance, Improvisation and Experimental Practice
  • Innovation and Design: Acoustics, Instrumental Design and Interactive platforms
  • Interdisciplinary Studies: Collaborative Performances, Cross-media Art/ Multi-disciplinary  projects
  • Learning & Teaching: Pedagogy,  Teaching Approach and Experience Design                     
  • Music and Community: Social Engagement projects, Music in Public Spaces, Music and Well-being
  • Culture and Aesthetics: Investigation of Musical Contexts, Cognition and Perception, Diversity and Interculturality, Evolution and Developments

Documenting and Presenting your Research

The public outcome(s) may include a combination of the following:

  • Performance:  a variety of public settings may be explored, from public spaces to online platforms, real-time and non-real-time
  • Creation: Fixed Media Composition, Acoustic and Electronic Music, Mixed Media, Trans-Media Projects
  • Exhibition: Site-Specific Installations, Physical or Virtual/ Interactive Platforms
  • Online Resources: Website, Database, Radio/ Internet Broadcast, Podcasts, Video Channel, Application Design
  • Educational– Community Engagement: Public workshops, Experience Design

Each student is required to submit an accompanying paper thesis documenting their contextual research, their process and how their finding informs their artistic practice.

Criteria for Master’s Thesis

The student’s project and documentation should meet the following criteria:

  • Practical Skills 

Has the student demonstrated an appropriate level of skills in his/her field, meeting the professional demands of that field, at that level, and suitable to the project?

  • Artistic Approaches   

Has the student developed artistic approaches that are suitable to his/her project?

  • Knowledge

Has the student acquired relevant knowledge to support his/her practice in relation to the wider contexts? (artistic, historical, cultural, theoretical)

  • Questions & Methods

Is the question well-formulated and has the student chosen appropriate methods to respond to his/her proposed questions?

  • Outcome

Does the work demonstrate sufficient balance between research and artistic practice?

Does the work demonstrate integrity and care?

Does the work provide extended knowledge or new perspective in the research area?

  • Reflection

Has the student described and illustrated the process and outcomes adequately?

Has the student successfully implemented his/her findings into their practice?

Has the student demonstrated self-reflection, critical thinking and the ability to sustain autonomous learning?

  • Presentation & Communication

Has the student successfully communicated his/her ideas using appropriate presentation mediums and skills?

  • Social Engagement

Has the student taken into consideration the social aspects of the work and created opportunities to engage with the communities during his/her process?

Guidelines for Proposal & Thesis


Your proposal should include the following topics:

  1. Thesis Title / หัวข้อวิทยานิพนธ์
  2. Background, context and significance/ relevance / ความเป็นมาและความสำคัญ 
  3. Objectives / วัตถุประสงค์
  4. Research questions / คำถามการวิจัย
  5. Delimitation / Scope of the project / ขอบเขตการวิจัย
  6. Definition of terms/terminology / คำจำกัดความของคำที่ใช้ 
  7. How the outcome benefits society / ประโยชน์ที่คาดว่าจะได้รับ 
  8. Process/methods proposed / วิธีดำเนินการ 
  9. Schedule – timeline / แผนกำหนดการ
  10. Literature review / ทบทวนวรรณกรรม 
  11. Bibliography / บรรณานุกรม
  12. Appendix / ภาคผนวก

Your thesis should comprise of 3 sections, which are:

1. Preliminary Section

The outer cover (ปกนอก), Title page (หน้าชื่อเรื่อง), Approval page  (หน้าอนุมัติ), Thai abstract (บทคัดย่อภาษาไทย), English abstract (บทคัดย่อภาษาอังกฤษ), Acknowledgements (กิตติกรรมประกาศ) และ Contents (สารบัญ)

2.Body of Research

This section will be divided into 5 small sections as suggested below

  1. Background, context, relevance and objectives with the review of your consulted sources and materials.
  2. Research Questions and Description of the research process and methodologies (how you explore your topic and find answers to your questions)
  3. Portfolio of works with accompanying description
  4. Analysis and critical reflection of the findings (explaining how the research inform your creative work)
  5. Conclusions

3.References Section

Bibliographies and References (บรรณานุกรม), Appendices (ภาคผนวก), Author’s biography (ประวัติผู้แต่ง)

  • Number of Pages:  Minimum 30 pages – excluding visual materials and scores 
  • Font: TH Sarabun 16 or equivalent
  • Reference Format: Chicago Style


1 Month before Semester Starts – Orientation

2 Weeks before Semester – Registration 

Week 9/Project Week – Project Week Participation (as assistant/coordinator)

Week 12 – Presentation of Master Skill’s Project at the Postgraduate Day

Week 9/ Project Week  – M.M. Seminar (Host)

Week 12 – Submission of Thesis Proposal Draft with Literature Review (7-12 pages exclude appendix) & Request for Supervisor 

Week 16 – Submission of Video Presentation and Full Proposal 

End of May/ June – Qualifying Exam  (with External Jury) 

June – Final Submission of Proposal (after revision)

Week 8 – Submission of Progress Report (Proposal) with Overview of Content Structure 

Week 9/ Project Week – Project Week Workshop Host (if applicable)

Week 12 – Submission of Abstract for Master Symposium 

Week 16 – Submission of Introduction, Literature Review, Description of Artistic Process and Portfolio of examples 

December – Proposal Examination (with External Jury)

Week 2 – Submission of Full Paper for Master Symposium (4 – 10 Pages)

Week 9/ Project Week – Master Symposium  / Presentation of Research Article 

Week 12 – Submission of Thesis 

Week 16 – 18 – Thesis Examination (with External Jury) 

June – July – Final Submission (after revision) 

Updated on May 2020

Master of Music Program | Princess Galyani Vadhana Institute of Music