With regard to the scope of addressed research topics and utilized methodologies, the activities undertaken by the Academy’s departments reflect the specificity of teaching at the tertiary level of music education. Each conference, symposium, seminar or lecture is complemented by a concert or a form of musical performance, which makes it possible for practising musicians to confront their musical experience with the historical-analytical perspective of describing artistic phenomena. Among authors of academic papers are not only music theorists and musicologists, but increasingly more often also composers, conductors, instrumentalists and vocalists who share their ideas and thoughts on music, thus contributing to an in-depth understanding of the structure of a musical work and a variety of contexts in which it operates. This in turn helps them work out their own conception of interpreting and rendering the given work.
Such a formula of combining academic and artistic activites has been in use ever since 1983, when the first academic conference was organized, commemorating the 20th anniversary of the death of Tadeusz Szeligowski, an outstanding Polish composer. The conference initiated research projects on the lives and creative output of such great Polish and European composers as Johann Sebastian Bach (1986), Maurice Ravel (1987), Olivier Messiaen (1989), Karol Szymanowski (1992), and Witold Lutoławski (2013). The Department of Theory of Music and Composition, which launched the above-mentioned projects, stimulated further activity at the Academy by cooperating with the teaching and academic staff of other departments as well as music theorists and musicologists representing other academic centres.
More research projects that followed have gradually increased the number of collaborating academics, and have become an integral part of the calendar of regular events organized by the Academy. The research theme, The Music and Musical Life of the Pomerania and Kujawy Region, initiated in 1989 on the initiative of Prof. Edmund Heza, has been continued to this day, formerly under the supervision of Prof. Anna Nowak, presently – PhD Aleksandra Kłaput-Wisniewska. The Language-System-Style-Form project was executed on the initiative of Prof. Franciszek Woźniak in the course of nine years: 1994-2003. The third major, long-term project, The Musical Work – its Ontological and Epistemological Aspects, was started by Prof. Anna Nowak in 2004 and since then it has been gathering researchers and academics not only from Poland, but also from abroad: Toulouse, Berlin, Vienna, Bratislava, Brno, Banska Bystrica, Riga, Lvov, Kiev, Odessa.
Other Departments of the Academy also organize international conferences and seminars (e.g. the Department of Voice Production and Training, headed by Prof. Krzysztof Szydzisz) as well as engage in a variety of artistic and academic projects (e.g. the Department of Harpsichord, Organ and Early Music, headed by Prof. Urszula Bartkiewicz). The following long-term research themes play an important role in stimulating the pedagogical process at the Academy: Issues in Music Interpretation, Choir Music and Its Historical and Performing Aspects, Opera Theatre – the Tradition, the Present and the Future, Issues in Sound and Film-Making and Virtual Sound Technology.