Uni offers world’s first Beatles Masters Degree

From September 2021, the University of Liverpool is offering students the opportunity to study for the world’s first MA in The Beatles: Music Industry and Heritage. Tony McDonough reports

The Beatles
People can study for a Masters degree in The Beatles


Students from around the world could become bona fide professors of the Fab Four with a new Masters programme offered by the University of Liverpool.

From September 2021, the university is offering the world’s first MA in The Beatles: Music Industry and Heritage. It will appeal to hose currently working – or considering pursuing a career in music and creative industries.

MA Programme Leader, and Beatles expert, Dr Holly Tessler said: “I’m absolutely delighted that we are able to bring formal study of The Beatles to the University of Liverpool’s Department of Music and Institute of Popular Music – the world’s first specialist centre for the study of popular music.

“What makes this MA unique is its focus on The Beatles in a future-facing way, considering the legacy’s influence on the music and creative industries, in popular culture, and within heritage, culture and tourism in the 21st century.

“This MA is as much about the wider study of Liverpool’s – and Britain’s – heritage, tourism and culture sectors as it is about the role The Beatles played in them.”

The University’s Department of Music has a rich history of engagement with the cultural legacy of The Beatles. Dr Mike Jones is a member of the Beatles Legacy Group – which seeks to establish the economic value of Beatles tourism to Liverpool’s economy – and frequent media commentator on the group, its members and its continuing relevance.

He added: “Liverpool should be regarded not just as the birthplace of The Beatles, but their cradle. What The Beatles took to the world was, in part, Liverpool’s unique culture. The introduction of The Beatles MA at last gives the University of Liverpool a framework to explore this deep, significant and lasting relationship”.

The postgraduate qualification, which sits alongside the University’s MA Music Industry Studies and MA Classical Music Industry, begins by contextualising study of The Beatles within a music and creative industries framework. 

It then broadens to examine the role the band plays in wider fields such as tourism and heritage, before considering how that influence could be replicated in different places, industries and contexts around the world.

University of Liverpool head of music, Professor Catherine Tackley, also said: “The launch of this exciting new programme coincides with the opening of the Tung Auditorium in the Yoko Ono Lennon Centre, which will extend the University’s contribution to the rich musical and cultural life of this city with which the Department of Music is closely associated.

Applications for the MA in The Beatles: Music Industry and Heritage are now open. Click here to find out more.

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