OFFERED BY University of Bern

Master in World Arts and Music

  • Bern

Program Overview

  • 4 semesters


  • Tuition fee, semester fee and Student Union membership: Swiss students: 805 CHF/per semester, international students: 1005 CHF/per semester

    Tuition Fees

  • 30. April (fall semester), 15. December (spring semester)

    Application Deadline

  • Pace

  • Study Time

  • en


In the master s in World Arts and Music students develop exemplary essential knowledge of Western and non-Western music art and literary traditions from perspectives such as globalization interculturality transculturality and cultural anthropology At the end of the study program students are able to use cultural scientific theories and methods field research and interview techniques and their work with digital media in the area of music image film and text analysis and also in various professional fields such as cultural journalism cultural management cultural policy intercultural music art and theater pedagogy The master s study program in World Arts and Music enables the combined study of the artistic forms of expression and media of different cultures within the joint framework of Cultural Studies In order to take research across subject geographical or aesthetic boundaries there is an orientation towards methods in Cultural Studies Traditional subjects often stress a classic work canon particularly in the context of Western culture In contrast students following the World Arts and Music program investigate the relationship between these canons and the forms previously excluded such as for example popular traditional and non-Western art The program has also been developed to question and break down geographical technical methodological and also historical barriers constructed by the individual disciplines p In the master s phase 1st – 3rd semester and in the master s thesis phase 4th semester the study program is split into a compulsory area and a compulsory option The compulsory area includes one of the compulsory introductory courses that is to say the seminars Introduction to the Basic Concepts of World Arts Introduction to Culture and Media Theory and a lecture from a changing program in the field of the Cultural Anthropology of Music or World Art History The compulsory area also includes compilation of an independent piece of written work ESA on a topic relating to cultural theory In the WAM major students are ultimately required to attend the master s workshop and write their master s thesis on the compulsory area of their studies Depending on the degree program WAM major or minor the compulsory options include a variety of courses in the areas of Music Theater or Dance as well as Visual Art Media or Literature from the courses offered by the institute participating in the WAM Students also need to compile an independent piece of written work and attend the master s workshop as part of their studies

Key Facts

  • Credit 120

Admission Requirements

Fees and Funding

Tuition Fees

  • Tuition fee, semester fee and Student Union membership: Swiss students: 805 CHF/per semester, international students: 1005 CHF/per semester

Getting a Student Visa

Since Switzerland is a part of the Schengen zone, a Schengen visa will win you the right to go to the country, but if you want to stay there as a student, you must take a few more steps. The procedures are different for EU/EFTA and non-EU/EFTA students.

After getting the acceptance letter, follows the process of setting an appointment with the Swiss embassy or consulate in your country. The procedure takes time, so make sure to set the appointment six months prior to your studying. The processing time for the short stay visas is around 10-15 days, and for long stay visas, eight to ten weeks.

For each document required, you have to provide the original along with three copies. The papers should be in English or in one of Switzerland’s national languages (German, French, Italian, or Romansh). If they are not in one of these languages, you will need a certified translation of those documents. 

Switzerland Student Visa Requirements

  • The completed and signed application forms for a long stay visa (D type) in one of the languages mentioned above. 
  • Passport – valid three months beyond the planned stay.
  • Four passport-size biometric photographs.
  • Letter of acceptance (certificate of enrollment) issued by a Swiss university.
  • Paid visa application fee. 
  • Proof of payment of the registration and tuition fees (for the first year of your studies).
  • Proof of sufficient financial coverage: copies of bank statements or a letter from the bank provided by you or your supervisor. Funds are supposed to cover living costs in Switzerland for the duration of schooling (21,000 CHF or 19,200 EUR at the beginning of each year of your studies).
  • Scholarship/Loan proof (if available) from an institution that proves that the scholarship or loan will cover all expenses for the study.
  • CV.
  • Letter of motivation, which should also include your professional plans for the future.

Submitting the Switzerland student visa application

After filling the application and completing all required documents, you should submit them in person at the Swiss embassy/consulate at the designated time of your appointment. Along with submitting your documents, you are required to pay the Swiss student visa application fee. 

After receiving your Swiss Student Visa

You may enter Switzerland after you receive a student visa. Within the first two weeks of arrival, you have to register at the local Residents Registration Office of your canton as well as visit the cantonal migration office in order to obtain a residence permit form.

B permit (a biometric card) is the type of residence permit for student stay. Prior to that, you will receive an attestation that allows you to open a Swiss bank account. It will take up to 8 weeks for your B permit to be processed. 

Student Visa Validity

The student visa or the B permit obtained in Switzerland initially is valid for one year. After one year, you have the option to extend it. However, updated proof of income is required in order for your student visa to be extended.


If you’re a student who wants to study in Switzerland but are not quite sure what are the steps of the student visa application process,  you are advised to read the following resources on Everything You Need To Know about getting a visa for Switzerland.

Work Permit

Find out all you need to know about work permit regulations for working part-time (during studies) and full-time (after graduation) in Switzerland.

Work while studying in Switzerland

For many international students in Switzerland, working while studying is an ideal option. Still, that is not recommended by some universities since it can distract and affect your academic work. With job boards and other advisory services, other schools facilitate job searches to help students. During the school year, students’ working hours are limited, and there are a few requirements they need to fulfill.

How many hours are international students allowed to work per week?

International students can work up to 15 hours a week in part-time jobs. But during semester holidays students can work full-time.


When are students allowed to start working?

Students from outside the EU/EFTA countries may start working only 6 months after starting their degree program.

Is there a work permit required for students working part-time?

Citizens from EU-27/EFTA states do not require authorization for short-term employment up to three months or 90 days per the calendar year. For an extended time, they will have to earn a residence permit. Third-country nationals are obliged to submit numerous documents to prove their eligibility for a work permit in Switzerland.

What job can I get as a student in Switzerland?

During your years as a student, there are many part-time jobs that you can do. For most students, employment in retail, restaurants, and others are sought-after options. However, a lack of language skills (in German, French, or Italian) can limit your employment chances. 

Work after graduation in Switzerland

Upon your graduation, you have the right to look for a permanent job in Switzerland. Prior to that, a residency permit that allows you to search for a job should be obtained. The permit is only valid for 6 months, and it cannot be extended.

What requirements do students need to fulfill in order to receive a residency work permit?

In order to receive the residency work permit, you have to provide proof that you:

  • Have graduated. 
  • Are financially able to support your say.
  • Have secured housing.

Are students allowed to work during this 6 months period?

During this six month period, graduates can work up to 15 hours a week. These rules do not apply for EU/EFTA nationals as they benefit from the freedom of movement under bilateral agreements.

How difficult is for international students to find a permanent job after graduation in Switzerland?

A non-EU/EFTA can get a job in Switzerland only if there are no qualified individuals from within the Swiss labour market or from an EU/EFTA state that apply for the position. Employers are required to show that they made “big efforts” to find qualified applicants from EU/EFTA countries or nationals who already have a permit to work. Furthermore, employers must show why those with priority to get the job were not suitable candidates for the position.


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