I was looking for a programme with a blend of aesthetics, history and modern scientific inquiry regarding music, and the University of Oxford had this unique combination
What made you decide to study at Oxford?
I am a first-batch student and a faculty member at the first and only Department of Musicology in Pakistan established in the National College of Arts, Lahore back in 2002. The department was established with a vision to critically examine the dying tradition of art music in Pakistan. I completed my Bachelors in Musicology in 2005 and was particularly interested in how developments in music cognition, perception and experience are beneficial for improving the quality of music. I was looking for a programme with a blend of aesthetics, history and modern scientific inquiry regarding music, and the University of Oxford had this unique combination, with considerable flexibility in the Masters programme. I am of the view that my exposure and training at Oxford will help me upgrade the research culture back in my country. I also hope that in future, I will become a bridge to foster a productive institutional relationship between the National College of Arts and the University of Oxford.
“My advice for others is to focus on developing the quality of your work through original thinking”
How did you find the application process, and do you have any advice for others preparing to apply?
The application process was lengthy but easily understandable. My advice for others is to focus on developing the quality of your work through original thinking, it will pave your way to a successful admission.
Did you specify a college on your application?
I did not specify a college when I applied for MSt simply because I had no clue. In my DPhil application, however, I specified Oriel College as I had developed an affiliation with the college and its people. I was accepted as a DPhil student at Oriel, but my college affiliation changed because I was awarded a scholarship associated with Linacre College.
What do you think the benefits of the collegiate system are for postgraduate students?
I think it’s a great model as it creates an environment where students are socially diverse but academically unified. Each College has its own history, traditions and people and therefore interactions between students from different colleges become more fruitful.
What do you enjoy about being a member of Oriel’s MCR community?
“You have to participate with the whole of your being and this contributes to your knowledge about culture and society”
I think it’s a great place to see how academic excellence contributes to social behaviours. The diversity of events is such that you have to participate with the whole of your being and this contributes to your knowledge about culture and society.
What do you like the most about being an Orielensis?
I like the name, the buildings, and the history of the College, which gives students a powerful sense of belonging.