Instructions for the motivational essay

The purpose of your motivational essay is to explain why you are interested in undertaking post-graduate studies, what your goals are for these studies and what your outlook is beyond these studies. This is also an opportunity for you to describe aspects of your competence that might not become evident elsewhere in the application process.

Here are some points that we hope you will cover in your motivational essay. You can, of course, write about other things important to you as well.

  • As a part of your application materials you submit a portfolio. In your motivational essay, discuss your background but now with a more subjective angle: What have been the fundamental motivating forces in your work with music and for your proposed doctoral studies project? Do you have or have you had extra-musical activities that are or have been particularly important for you? Do you see any of those activities as integrating with the studies you are proposing to undertake or with your future activities in the field of music?
  • What is your relationship to research? What importance do research and a research approach have for your artistic activities?
  • Please briefly describe your previous musical studies and work experience. How can you use the knowledge and skills acquired in those activities in your post-graduate studies? Please specifically discuss your previous familiarity with the proposed subject of your post-graduate studies and also discuss what new information and skills you would need to acquire for this project.
  • Briefly describe the content of your post-graduate study project in relation to your personal goals. What motivated you to undertake this project?
  • Explain your thinking regarding a doctoral degree as a personal investment: What will you gain from it, and what will it require of you? What will be your priorities when circumstances related to your work (income, career, attractive positions, social relations, study progress, geographical distance to the place of study, etc.) require you to make time management choices?
  • How do you assume your activities will evolve or change after you have completed the proposed degree? What would your future professional activities be if you could pursue them in ideal circumstances? In case ideal circumstances do not materialise, what options do you have potentially available to you?

The guideline for length is 5,000 to 6,000 characters, or about 2 pages. Please format the document with 1.5 line spacing.

Add your name and contact details to the essay.

Your essay will be kept confidential. Nothing of its content will be disclosed to anyone not involved in the admissions process.

Back to “Applying for the Arts Study Programme”.