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Master Music Acoustics


Music Acoustics is a look behind the scene: how exactly is the sound of music created? What is the physical principle of singing, and: what are overtone singers doing? How does a guitar body vibrate in slow motion, and: how can instrument makers control this? Where does a bassoon radiate its sound, and: what does this implicate for miking it?
Music Acoustics is an interdisciplinary field of research with focus on the acoustic aspects of music performance and perception. Among these are

  • Function of musical instruments
  • Physics of sound generation
  • Measurement technique for music instruments
  • Interaction of musician, instrument, room and listener
  • Perception of timbre and music
  • Analysis of timbre and structure of music sounds
  • Synthesis of musical sounds and physical modelling

The University of Music Detmold with the Erich Thienhaus Institute for Tonmeister education offers excellent conditions for education and research in Music Acoustics: Artistic and scientific education is on an equally high level. Lecturers and guest lecturers are renowned experts in their fields. The broad variety of excellent equipment is outstanding. Top-class recording and sound processing equipment as well as acoustic measuring equipment can be used and the institute features an electronics lab, reverberation chamber, anechoic chamber, and labs for music acoustics and wave field synthesis. The music acoustics group collaborates with many scientists in research and industry.


The Master of Science Music Acoustics offers you

  • Consolidation of basic scientific knowledge
  • Education and research at the intersection of music instrument/musician/room/music
  • Fundamental and applied research projects
  • Introduction into the Scientific method
  • Ph. D./Dr.-Ing. program

The program is suited for

  • Bachelor of Music/Tonmeister (2 semester upgrade course)
  • Bachelor of Science in technical disciplines (4 semester course)

Graduates have job opportunities in many fields at the intersection of music and science e. g.:

  • Musical Instruments making
  • Acoustic consulting
  • Sound design
  • Research and Development in complex dynamic systems

During the courses, practical experience is offered in research and development cooperation projects. Students’ participation in scientific projects (e. g. ZIM, DFG) is highly appreciated.

Academic courses Master of Science

  • Fundamentals of Music Acoustics
  • Applied acoustics
  • Understanding scientific work
  • Analysis and modeling of musical instruments
  • Presentation of scientific work
  • Practical music acoustics I+II, includingconstruction and optimization of a musical instrument
  • Elective course modules: Chamber music, aural training, musicology, pedagogy, scientific work
  • Master thesis

Ph. D. program

The Erich-Thienhaus Institute offers a Ph. D. program. Applicants may be graduates from the M. Sc. Music Acoustics course as well as graduates (M. Sc./Dipl.-Ing.) from any other field of engineering with a strong vocation to music.

  • 2-level course of 6 semesters with degree option Ph. D. or Dr.-Ing.
  • Project cooperation in research and development

Application deadlines for the aptitude test

  • in January | November 1st of the pevious year
  • in June | March 15th
The program starts in winter semester.




  • Flyer M.Sc. Music Acoustics | PDF (English & German)
  • Video describing the M.Sc. program "Music Acoustics" | Youtube Link (english with German subtitles)
  • Research Newsletter 2016 | PDF (English)
  • Research Newsletter 2018 | PDF (English)

Regulations Version 2012

  • Examination regulations|  PDF (english) - PDF (german)
  • Study plan | PDF (english)
  • Handbook of courses | PDF (english & german)

Regulations Version 2019

  • Exmination regulations |  PDF (english) - PDF (german)
  • Study plan | PDF (english)
  • Handbook of courses | PDF (english & german)



To obtain more information please contact Prof. Dr.-Ing. Malte Kob.

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