Improving our understanding of the world

Our research is supported by world-class production facilities. Combined with rigorous scholarship and critical analysis, it delivers new and influential insights.

We have strong connections with industry, government, NGOs and community groups to provide solutions on a local and global level.

Our staff of nationally and internationally renowned academics and practitioners are passionate about respecting ethical values and actively fostering social justice, integrity, honesty and collegiality.

Our disciplines

MCCALL has four interdisciplinary research areas:


We investigate music in numerous contexts and musical styles. Our internationally renowned researchers consider the role of music – including recording practices, world music and more – within culture and society.

Research areas include:

  • contemporary music industries
  • creative communities
  • ethnomusicology
  • gesture studies
  • improvisation and jazz
  • music composition and creative process
  • music software and technologies
  • musical embodiment
  • performative inquiry
  • popular music studies
  • sonic interaction design
  • voice, singing and song.

Our research includes both traditional academic and creative practice outputs.

Performing arts and entertainment industries

Our academic and practice-based research investigates the impact of performing arts and entertainment on cultural and social life across diverse research areas including:

  • arts for social change
  • collaborative and participatory performance
  • cross-disciplinary conditions of technologised performance
  • identity, representation, and marginalised performing bodies
  • performance practices
  • popular entertainment.

At MCCALL we work in a range of research contexts across theatre, dance, circus, and performance studies.

Macquarie is ranked in the top 100 globally for performing arts (QS World Rankings by Subject for 2020) and in the 2016-18 Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA) ratings was ranked at ‘world standard’.

Macquarie is ranked in the top 8 universities in Australia for English Language and Literature (QS World Rankings by Subject for 2020). The last two Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA) ranking exercises recognised English literature at Macquarie as ‘above world standard’.

Our research focuses on:

  • creative practice
  • English literary traditions and genres
  • global written and visual cultures.

Our academics are at the forefront of cultural change, with a number of researchers in the department recognised as world leaders in their fields. This expertise informs our teaching and supervision from undergraduate level to higher degree research.

In our world-class research we investigate the role of languages in cultural identities, and their impact on linguistic and literary products in social life. Through the nexus between language and culture we explore a diverse range of multidisciplinary and cross-disciplinary areas, publishing in multicultural, intercultural and cross-cultural studies.

At MCCALL we have specialists in a variety of research areas in languages and cultures – some unique to Macquarie – who are sought-after for their expertise both locally and internationally.

Macquarie University was named Australia’s Lead Institution in Foreign Language Learning in The Australian’s 2019 Research Magazine, and our research in language studies and literary studies is considered ‘world standard’ (ERA 2018). Macquarie is also ranked in the top 8 universities in Australia for Modern Languages (QS World Rankings by Subject for 2020).

Macquarie University was recognised as ‘above world standard’ for Media and Communications Studies in the 2016-18 Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA) ratings, Australia’s national research evaluation framework.

Our research specialisations include:

  • cultural studies
  • digital media
  • film studies
  • interactive design
  • journalism
  • non-fiction storytelling
  • media and communications studies
  • public relations and social media
  • radio and podcasting
  • screen practice and production.