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Masters Degrees (Music Journalism)

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The MA in Music (Contemporary Music Studies) examines aspects of methodology, repertoire studies and cultural theory within a wide-ranging programme of investigation into the role of contemporary music in the society for which it is created. Read more

The MA in Music (Contemporary Music Studies) examines aspects of methodology, repertoire studies and cultural theory within a wide-ranging programme of investigation into the role of contemporary music in the society for which it is created.

You'll explore the key methodologies appropriate for scholarly study of the music of the present and recent past, such as oral history and contrasting approaches to musical ‘close reading’.

Musical repertoires, and notions of repertoire, are examined, and you are encouraged to ask such questions as whether the boundaries often considered to exist between, for example, ‘contemporary concert music’ and ‘popular music’ are still meaningful for practitioners, listeners and scholars today.

Various approaches to cultural theory are viewed in the light of what they might bring to the study of contemporary music of different kinds.

The understandings developed in your coursework culminate in the methods and approaches demonstrated in your dissertation.

This gives you the opportunity to address particular challenges of studying and writing about the music of our time arising from your own musical and theoretical enthusiasms.

The programme appeals to a wide range of students concerned to develop their understanding of today's music and keen to harness this to relevant intellectual skills.

While designed as an open-ended programme of study that can subsequently be applied in many ways within, and outside, the musical profession, it will be of special value to those preparing for further postgraduate research, and those considering careers in teaching, journalism, arts administration or the culture industries.

Modules & structure

Core module

Option modules

You choose three modules from a selection that currently includes:

Dissertation

Skills

You'll develop:

  • investigation and evaluation skills
  • intellectual skills in music
  • specific research skills

Careers

The programme is designed with careful consideration of the opportunities, challenges and intellectual demands presented by careers in music, such as:

  • journalism
  • teaching
  • broadcasting
  • librarianship
  • historically informed performance
  • contemporary composition
  • arts administration

Find out more about employability at Goldsmiths



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This MA allows you to build an individual, 'tailor-made' programme of study, which incorporates the intellectual concerns, skills and understandings that lead to a clearly focused research dissertation. . Read more

This MA allows you to build an individual, 'tailor-made' programme of study, which incorporates the intellectual concerns, skills and understandings that lead to a clearly focused research dissertation. 

You choose four modules, including at least one of two core modules, which provide you with specific research skills relevant to your interests.

This route is appropriate for those who have a particular interest they wish to develop not covered by one of our specialist pathways, or for those who are seeking a broadly based programme of music study at postgraduate level (taking both core modules, for example, would provide exceptional training for those going on to doctoral study).

Applicants should note that departmental timetable restrictions apply; consequently, part-time study offers the most flexible range of potential course combinations. This programme is not suitable if you're keen to take composition or performance modules – if this is what you'd like to do, please explore our MMus study options

The programme appeals to a wide range of students developing intellectual skills in music, perhaps as preparation for further postgraduate research, prior to entering teaching, or as a basis for a employment in arts administration, journalism, or other occupations in the creative and cultural industries.

Find out more about the MA in Music.

Modules & structure

Core modules

Core modules 

You choose three modules from a list that currently includes:

Dissertation



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The Master of Music in Music History at West Chester University has been designed to serve a diverse student population, from those with specific research interests to those simply seeking greater exposure to music history and literature for educational purposes. Read more
The Master of Music in Music History at West Chester University has been designed to serve a diverse student population, from those with specific research interests to those simply seeking greater exposure to music history and literature for educational purposes. Music educators attempting to strengthen their own teaching curricula are especially encouraged to apply, as the program meets state requirements for an advanced degree for school teachers. Any undergraduate music degree (education, theory, history, performance) fulfills the prerequisite for the program.

Curriculum

The M.M. program is now more compact and easier to complete, as the previous 33 credit requirement has been reduced to 30. Degree requirements include:

• 15 credits in Music History (five courses, three from the sequence MHL 610-615)
• 6 Elective credits (two courses, may include Music History)
• 3 credits in Music Theory
• 6 credits directed toward thesis-related research (two courses, MHL 698 and MMU 699)
• Foreign Language requirement
• Thesis Defense

Students may complete the 6 elective credits in subjects of their own choosing, drawn from the full spectrum of offerings across the School of Music and university, including music education, music theory, and performance, and other fields. Students may satisfy the language requirement by exam or by applying elective credits to language study.

Recently the department's core offerings were revised to direct students better toward thesis work. Traditional survey courses have been replaced with "topics" courses in which fewer works are examined in greater depth. The masterworks of the past are studied in their political and cultural contexts to demonstrate the manifold interconnections of music, the other arts, and society. Sample topics (drawn from different courses in the curriculum) include:

"The Palestrina Style and the Counter-Reformation"
"Lully and Music for the Court of the 'Sun King' "
"Vivaldi's The Four Seasons and the Concerto"
"Mozart's Le Nozze de Figaro and the Enlightenment"
"Schubert's Songs and the Romantic Cult of Sensibility"
"The Influence of Ragtime and Jazz on European Art Music in the 1920s and 1930s"
"Music and Minimalism: Riley, Reich, and Glass"

All degree requirements must be completed within six years. A single one-year extension may be granted for cause.

Candidates must demonstrate sufficient pianistic ability, sight singing, and aural perception to meet demands of program.

Further Study and Careers

This degree program is intended for students who (1) wish to continue their formal education working toward a doctoral degree in musicology, (2) desire to prepare themselves for a college-level teaching career in the area of music history and music appreciation, (3) do not necessarily intend to continue graduate work in music history, but desire more exposure to the repertory and literature of music from various historical periods, or (4) intend to pursue careers in closely related musical disciplines such as music editorship and publishing, music librarianship, music journalism and criticism, and music merchandising and marketing.

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About the course. Explore the most advanced studio techniques, technologies and processes at the forefront of current music production. Read more

About the course

  • Explore the most advanced studio techniques, technologies and processes at the forefront of current music production.
  • Discover advanced compositional devices and strategy applicable to DAW-based realisation of original material.
  • Unleash your creative potential and cultivate your own individual style to produce original works that stand out from the crowd in their artistic and technical sophistication.
  • Survey the most exciting aesthetic trends in current music-making with technology, and their relation to the demands of the music industry.

Why choose this course?

The MA Creative Music Production is aimed at applicants specifically interested in applying studio technologies and production skills to the creation of their own original music (as opposed to “producing” other artists’ music). In addition to equipping students with solid bases in studio technology, processes and practices, the course addresses the purely formal, artistic and aesthetic aspects of music-making, and the specific compositional devices and strategy applicable to DAW-based realisations of original material.

By surveying the defining traits and aesthetic concerns of a number of popular genres centred on electronic composition-production, students develop a sophisticated awareness of current artistic and aesthetic trends, and an enhanced knowledge of the musicology of production. On this course, you will develop a portfolio of original works showcasing your talent as a composer-producer, opening up a wide range of possibilities for your professional career.

Course content

Taught sessions will typically cover the following topics:

  • Studio Technology, processes and practices
  • Audio production and design
  • Compositional strategies in DAW environments
  • Musical form, structure and discourse in Electronica
  • Rhythm and kinesis in EDM
  • Experimentation in IDM
  • Noise in Techno
  • Timbre and texture in Ambient music
  • Machine aesthetics in House music
  • Sampling and re-contextualisation in Hip-Hop
  • Lo-fi aesthetics and Glitch
  • Retro-revivalism - analogue sound in the digital age

Resources

  • A large recording studio featuring the high-end SSL AWS 900+ SE mixing desk / Protools HD system and Quested and JBL monitoring (2.0, 2.1 and 5.1).
  • A medium-size studio featuring an Avid C24 / Protools HD system with RedNET and Neumann 5.1 monitoring.
  • 4 x iMac control/edit spaces with Slate Raven Mti touchscreen control and RedNET.
  • 2 x live recording booth/spaces.
  • 3 monitoring spaces for surround sound mixing.
  • a dubbing suite for A/V work (foley, ADR, etc.)
  • 2 x 30 seat dual-monitor Apple iMac labs.
  • A 150-seats state-of-the-art performance venue with Soundcraft vi1 console and full RedNET integration.
  • Top class outboard including Digidesign Pro Tools, Lexicon TLAudio, TC Electronic, Focusrite, and more.
  • Vast selection of top-quality dynamic, condenser and ribbon microphones, including Soundfield, Neumann, AKG, Coles, Shure, Audio-Technica, Beyerdynamic.

Careers

Graduates from this award will be equipped with a wide range of specialist knowledge and skills in the field of music technology and music creation – from purely technical to creative and intellectual. As such, they will be ideally positioned to pursue a career in the music and media industries, creating their own musical content for production music library, film/TV synch, or commercial release. You may, in addition, consider positions in music publishing, music journalism and criticism, or teaching, or you may continue your higher education at doctoral level.

Teaching methods

Lecture, seminars and tutorials are typically scheduled over two consecutive days a week, plus some extra sessions for particular workshops, performance, recording, as necessary. In addition to scheduled sessions, students are expected to engage in continuous self-directed study and studio practice.

Staff team

The MA Creative Music Production is led by Bruce Aisher.  Bruce is a music producer, songwriter, composer, remixer, sound designer and technology journalist whose work is to be found on over 100 commercially released tracks (including a US Billboard Club Chart No.1) on TV programmes such as ‘CSI’ ‘Numb3rs’ and 'Top Gear' and products by Apple, Clavia and Native Instruments.

Industry links

Our industry partners include:

  • BAFTA
  • Splash Damage Videogame Company
  • Videofeet Media Company
  • Focusrite
  • SampleMagic
  • Dynamic Music
  • Extreme Music (Sony)
  • Grand Chapel Studios
  • iZotope
  • SSL

Entry requirements

A good (1st, 2.1 or 2.2) BMus/BSc/BA in Music / Music Technology (or equivalent qualification), or 5 years professional industry experience at the discretion of the admissions or programme tutor. Evidence of solid compositional work with technology prior to undertaking the course is required (determined by the submission of a small portfolio of original compositions with the student’s application).

All international students are required to demonstrate suitable levels of English language competence. This can be through previous study in English, but we often require specific performance in English tests. All undergraduates must be able to prove a minimum of IELTS 6.5 with at least 5.5 in every component or equivalent.

Fees and Funding

Fees for 2018/19 are still to be confirmed for home students.

International Students

Full time: £12,500 for the 2018 academic year

Part time: If you decide to study this course on a part time basis you will be charged £1040 per 15 credits for the 2018 academic year

*Tuition fees are charged annually. The fees quoted above are for the specified year(s) only. Fees may be higher in future years, for both new and continuing students. Please see the University’s Fees and Finance Policy (and in particular the section headed “When tuition fees change”), for further information about when and by how much the University may increase its fees for future years.

How to apply

For more information about our new MA in Creative Music Production, please contact Bruce Aisher on



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This programme offers a variety of stimulating and contemporary academic pathways with a range of theoretical and practice-based modules. . Read more

This programme offers a variety of stimulating and contemporary academic pathways with a range of theoretical and practice-based modules. 

The MA in Music programme introduces you to the fundamental principles of research in music. It provides a unique and creative approach to musicology, valuing intellectual curiosity and musical diversity.

Awards available are:

The Masters designed with careful consideration of the opportunities, challenges and intellectual demands presented by careers in music, such as journalism, teaching, broadcasting, librarianship, historically informed performance, contemporary composition, and arts administration.

The programme addresses the challenges of an evolving subject. It encompasses many repertoires of music, offering pathways that reference Western art music and popular music, the music of other cultures, sound art, contemporary music and electronic music.

  • You develop systematic, critical and creative approaches to study and research, exploring musical practice and discourse in historical, social and cultural contexts
  • You investigate research ideas and methods in contemporary musicology, to develop an independent and original approach to current questions and debates
  • You explore the complex interrelationships between music and other subjects, between theory and practice, and between performance and structural interpretation

The programme helps you understand and evaluate current trends and traditions, and appreciate how we, like others before us, reflect the time, place and attitudes of the milieu within which we work.

Modules & structure

Each Masters degree is awarded after the accumulation of 180 credits. You take

  • Core module(s) (30 credits each)
  • Optional modules (30 credits each)
  • Dissertation or Major Project (60 credits)

The topic of your dissertation or project relates closely to the programme outcomes of your pathway and its core modules, and is agreed with your pathway leader.

The options provide you with a choice of modules relevant to your chosen pathway. We will offer advice at interview and/or enrolment about your options. Please note that the availability of options may depend upon the department timetable.

Skills

You'll develop:

  • investigation and evaluation skills
  • intellectual skills in music
  • specific research skills

Careers

The programme is designed with careful consideration of the opportunities, challenges and intellectual demands presented by careers in music, such as:

  • journalism
  • teaching
  • broadcasting
  • librarianship
  • historically informed performance
  • contemporary composition
  • arts administration

Find out more about employability at Goldsmiths



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The MMus Music will introduce you to the fundamental principles of either research in popular music or composition for film, TV and media. Read more
The MMus Music will introduce you to the fundamental principles of either research in popular music or composition for film, TV and media. It provides unique and creative approaches to musicology and composition, valuing intellectual curiosity, musical diversity and creativity.
The course will help strengthen your ability to utilise independent learning whilst developing original and creative responses to problems and current complex issues. You will have the opportunity to develop in-depth knowledge of your chosen pathway in musical study and practice.

Special Features

• Loans for tuition fees are available from the Students Award Agency for Scotland (SAAS) for eligible Scotland domiciled and EU students, and loans for living costs for eligible Scottish students.
• Pathway options of MMus Music (Popular Musicology) or MMus Music (Composition for Film, TV and Media)
• You will gain the key skills and expertise to enable you to make an effective contribution to the creative industries

Modules

[[PgCert ]]
Postgraduate Certificate in Music (Popular Musicology)
Core modules are:
Contemporary Musicology: Issues and Analysis
Popular Music: Gender and Sexuality or Music: Politics and Protest

Postgraduate Certificate in Music (Composition for Film, TV and Media)
Core modules are:
Composition techniques for Film, TV and Media
Arranging, Orchestration and Film Scoring

PgDip

Postgraduate Diploma in Music (Popular Musicology)
Core modules are:
Research in Context: External engagement
Contemporary music journalism

You will also choose one of the following option modules:
Highland Voices: Music and Song or Film, TV and Media Musicology

Postgraduate Diploma in Music (Composition for Film, TV and Media)
Core module is:
Composition in Context: External Engagement
You will also choose two of the following option modules:
Music Business for Film Composers
Film, TV and Media Musicology
Contemporary Post Production Studio Design

MMus

To achieve the award of MMus Music (Popular Musicology) you must complete a dissertation.
For the MMus (Composition for Film, TV and Media) you will complete a major project.

Access routes

BA (Hons) Popular Music
BA (Hons) Music Business
BSc (Hons) Audio Engineering
BA (Hons) Applied Music

Locations

This course is available at Perth College UHI, Crieff Road, Perth, PH1 2NX

Funding

From 2017, eligible Scotland domiciled students studying full time can access loans up to 10,000 from the Student Awards Agency for Scotland (SAAS).This comprises a tuition fee loan up to £5,500 and a non-income assessed living cost loan of £4,500. EU students studying full time can apply for a tuition fee loan up to £5500.

Part-time students undertaking any taught postgraduate course over two years up to Masters level who meet the residency eligibility can apply for a for a tuition fee loan up to £2,750 per year.

See Scholarships tab below for full details

Top reasons to study at UHI

Do something different: our reputation is built on our innovative approach to learning and our distinctive research and curriculum which often reflects the unique environment and culture of our region and closely links to vocational skills required by a range of sectors.
Choice of campuses – we have campuses across the Highlands and Islands of Scotland. Each campus is different from rich cultural life of the islands; the spectacular coasts and mountains; to the bright lights of our city locations.
Small class sizes mean that you have a more personal experience of university and receive all the support you need from our expert staff
The affordable option - if you already live in the Highlands and Islands of Scotland you don't have to leave home and incur huge debts to go to university; we're right here on your doorstep

How to apply

If you want to apply for this postgraduate programme click on the ‘visit website’ button below which will take you to the relevant course page on our website, from there select the Apply tab to complete our online application.
If you still have any questions please get in touch with our information line by email using the links beow or call on 0845 272 3600.

International Students

If you would like to study in a country of outstanding natural beauty, friendly communities, and cities buzzing with social life and activities, the Highlands and Islands of Scotland should be your first choice. We have campuses across the region each one with its own special characteristics from the rich cultural life of the islands to the bright city lights of Perth and Inverness. Some courses are available in one location only, for others you will have a choice; we also have courses that can be studied online from your own home country. .http://www.uhi.ac.uk/en/studying-at-uhi/international

English Language Requirements

Our programmes are taught and examined in English. To make the most of your studies, you must be able to communicate fluently and accurately in spoken and written English and provide certified proof of your competence before starting your course. Please note that English language tests need to have been taken no more than two years prior to the start date of the course. The standard English Language criteria to study at the University of the Highlands and Islands are detailed on our English language requirements page http://www.uhi.ac.uk/en/studying-at-uhi/international/how-to-apply-to-uhi/english-language-requirements

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MA Specialist Journalism at Cardiff Metropolitan University is taught by academic staff who are both practitioners and researchers. Read more

MA Specialist Journalism at Cardiff Metropolitan University is taught by academic staff who are both practitioners and researchers. This distinctive degree is aimed to support you while you develop your journalistic skills and techniques within one of the following specialisms: film, music, fashion or sports journalism.

The course has a strong employability focus allowing students to combine journalistic techniques and perspectives with practical vocational skills, which are reinforced by work placements. Whether for professional development purposes, to enhance your freelance career, or as your first step into the world of journalism, the MA will help you gain the knowledge and confidence to be a specialist journalist.   

We have expertise across a number of fields and our academic community is vibrant and dynamic with strong industry links.

One of the great strengths of the programme is its flexibility. MA Specialist Journalism can be studied either full or part time allowing you to control the pace and depth of your postgraduate study. Programme delivery is also enhanced by the university's commitment to e-learning.

Course Content

Core Modules:

  • Writing for Magazines

 This module will provide students with the key skills required to write as journalists and then focus those skills on their chosen specialism.

  • Magazine and Production Journalism

This module will apply the skills developed in Writing for Magazines by exploring the language, content, style and structure of magazine, newspaper and online features.

 The Specialist Journalist

  • Film Journalism 
  • Music Journalism 
  • Fashion Journalism 
  • Sports Journalism 

In this module students decide on one specialist subject area, study the nature of journalists’ work in their chosen field, and also produce longer feature articles aimed at specifically targeted audiences.

  • Multimedia Journalism

This module will provide students with the key essential skills to become multimedia journalists and adapt those skills to their specialist field. 

  • Law, Ethics and Landscape

This module will provide students with an understanding of the changing landscape of contemporary journalism, and develop knowledge and understanding of journalistic law and ethics.

  • Employability and Enterprise

As well as a work placement in a relevant media organisation, students will also develop essential skills and knowledge needed for making a successful living in the new media landscape.

  • Research Skills in Journalism 

This module aims to provide the reflective skills necessary to function as a successful journalist, exploring the processes and skills necessary for undertaking rigorous, credible, ethical and worthwhile research. 

Dissertation This module allows students to create a journalistic portfolio from their chosen specialism.  

Learning & Teaching

Most modules are taught through group workshops and seminars. Some modules will also include individual tutorials and the dissertation module is delivered entirely through one-to-one tutorials with your supervisor.

In workshops and seminars full use is made of University technology and course materials will be delivered and stored through our Virtual Learning Environment. It will be possible for you to access the Virtual Learning Environment remotely and you will be encouraged to do so. 

Most modules are 20 credits and the dissertation is worth 40 credits.

In a 20-credit module you will receive 22 hours of timetabled teaching and you will be expected to conduct 178 hours of independent study. In a 30-credit module you will receive 33 hours of timetabled teaching and you will be expected to conduct 267 hours of independent study. The 40-credit dissertation is mainly conducted with independent study. You will receive 4 hours of tutorial supervision (this includes supervisors looking over your work) and you will be expected to conduct 396 hours of independent study. 

Each student is appointed a personal tutor who will be available for academic advice, pastoral support and personal development planning. Tutors also have weekly office hours. 

A critical but supportive environment is achieved through a combination of workshops, research seminars and e-learning. You will be introduced to the practicalities of preparing and submitting your work for publication.

Assessment

We have a variety of approaches to assessment across the degree depending upon the module. All practical modules are assessed through portfolios of journalistic work and accompanying critical essays in which you are required to reflect on your journalism and to contextualise your work. These modules also include class-based formative peer-assessment in the form of practical workshops. These do not count towards your final grade but the sessions do help you grow and reflect as a specialist journalist. 

Modules also make use of Virtual Learning Environments for assessments and you may be asked to view material online and then to respond to it. 

You will receive tutor support in class and through our VLE in order to prepare you for each assessment point. We also have library facilities online and at campus.

Employability & Careers

As well as a career in journalism, the MA is also a great choice for those wishing to enhance their employment and professional opportunities in editorial and publishing careers. 

Key journalistic skills and techniques are, of course, central to the degree. However, this degree will also encourage you to develop the valuable transferable skills of autonomy, effective collaboration, self-direction, organisation, initiative and adaptability that are highly regarded in the workplace. 

As well as journalism, a Master's degree in Specialist Journalism could also lead to a variety of other careers, such as: teaching, research, public relations, marketing, the civil service, publishing, the media, and employment in the public or voluntary sectors.



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The MA in Music (Ethnomusicology) introduces a range of methodologies in relation to the study of music in its cultural contexts. Read more

The MA in Music (Ethnomusicology) introduces a range of methodologies in relation to the study of music in its cultural contexts.

As well as engaging with musical practices in various geographic or cultural areas, the programme acknowledges the importance of urban ethnomusicology and the usefulness of applying ethnomusicological approaches to Western art and popular music.

You have the opportunity to engage with key ethnographic methodologies, such as interviewing, videoing and video editing, and musical performance as a research technique.

The innovative structure of the programme allows you to specialise in one of these areas if you wish, leading to a final project that itself may have a significant practical component, and you have the opportunity to undertake fieldwork projects as part of your studies.

A written dissertation option is also available, allowing you to engage in depth with an issue that interests you.

The programme appeals to a wide range of students hoping to develop their intellectual skills in music, particularly those with interests in music as a cultural phenomenon.

It's exceptionally useful, for example, for students preparing for further postgraduate research, or for those considering careers in teaching, journalism, arts administration or the culture industries, or working with government agencies or charities abroad.

Find out more about the MA in Music.

Modules & structure

Core module

Option modules

You choose three modules from a list that currently includes:

Ethnomusicology Major Project

Skills

You'll develop an awareness of key ethnographic methodologies, investigation and evaluation skills, intellectual skills in music and specific research skills.

Careers

The programme will be exceptionally useful for, for example, students preparing for further postgraduate research, or for those considering careers in teaching, journalism, arts administration or the culture industries, or working with government agencies or charities abroad.

Find out more about employability at Goldsmiths



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Develop your creative abilities in composition and sound through practical and theoretical work. Explore theory and practice in the field of popular music production, focusing on historical contexts and the development of advanced technical skills. Read more
Develop your creative abilities in composition and sound through practical and theoretical work. Explore theory and practice in the field of popular music production, focusing on historical contexts and the development of advanced technical skills.

Our MA reflects current developments within and beyond the concert hall, including music for film, media and interactive arts. You will:
-Compose
-Make sound art
-Devise music theatre
-Use music technologies
-Create film music
-Evaluate music and sonic art

The course is for composers, musicians, sound artists, sound and music practitioners from related fields including theatre, and theorists with interests in music and sound.

How will I study?
For each module, you can choose between submitting a creative project or an essay. You also submit a supervised extended project or dissertation.

Facilities
You have access to facilities including the Music Department’s recordings and scores collections, the Jonathan Harvey Electronic Music Studio for recording and synthesis, and a range of music software.

Scholarships
Our aim is to ensure that every student who wants to study with us is able to despite financial barriers, so that we continue to attract talented and unique individuals.

Chancellor's International Scholarship (2017)
-25 scholarships of a 50% tuition fee waiver
-Application deadline: 1 May 2017

HESPAL Scholarship (Higher Education Scholarships Scheme for the Palestinian Territories) (2017)
-Two full fee waivers in conjuction with maintenance support from the British Council
-Application deadline: 1 January 2017

USA Friends Scholarships (2017)
-A scholarship of an amount equivalent to $10,000 for nationals or residents of the USA on a one year taught Masters degree course.
-Application deadline: 3 April 2017

Careers
You will have built up a substantial portfolio of compositions and creative projects during the course.

Our course emphasises and encourages skills in technology, communication, IT, evaluation, analysis, collaboration and organisation, and enables you to go on to compose, arrange, perform, produce, record and engage in sound design.

With these skills and experiences, our graduates go on to work in an amazing range of careers, such as:
-Freelance professional musicians and composers
-Work in the arts sector
-In publishing
-Arts administration
-Producing events
-Radio broadcasting
-Writing and lecturing

You also gain the skills to go on to do research, teaching in schools, music journalism, writing music for video games and running your own music production company.

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This MA is an opportunity to challenge yourself academically and musically, while developing a specialism. Overview. This MA is an opportunity to challenge yourself academically and musically, while developing a specialism in a research-led university environment. Read more

This MA is an opportunity to challenge yourself academically and musically, while developing a specialism.

Overview

This MA is an opportunity to challenge yourself academically and musically, while developing a specialism in a research-led university environment. We place an emphasis on flexibility and student choice and have designed a programme that allows you to personalise your course of study.

A significant proportion of module choices will be determined by your abilities and interests so that you can tailor your programme of study to best meet your career goals and ambitions.

This programme is ideal for performers, composers and music scholars with an interest in developing their area of expertise, learning valuable skills, and exploring a relevant course of study.

Areas of Study

You will have the opportunity to follow one of three pathways: Performance, Composition and Music Studies.

Performance:

This pathway is designed for performers who are committed to improving their skills as instrumentalists and/or singers, both as soloists and in ensembles.

Composition:

This pathway will equip composers with the techniques and practical experience to pursue their own creative goals to a professional level with confidence and imagination.

Music Studies:

This pathway is designed to allow students to develop a solid basis in research techniques and methods in the fields of Historical Musicology, Music Analysis, Popular Music, and Ethnomusicology, whilst exploring different music styles and traditions in their historical, analytical, and theoretical perspectives.

Distinctive features

You will have the option to specialise in one of three main areas:

  • Performance
  • Composition
  • Music Studies.         

You will be taught by staff who are internationally-recognised experts in these subject areas.

Our reputation for international research was recognised in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework, the UK government’s assessment of research across all higher education institutions, where we are ranked 8th in the UK amongst music departments for research excellence and 2nd for the quality of our research environment.

Learning and assessment

Teaching of academic modules is delivered primarily through seminars and small-group tutorials, and you will have the opportunity to develop your own interests through fieldwork, interdisciplinary study, and other areas of work.

Our regular series of workshops and masterclasses allow you to work directly with distinguished composers and performers.

You will be expected to attend and participate in a weekly Postgraduate Forum and to attend the School’s research lecture series, which attracts visiting speakers from around the world.

Career prospects

Our graduates will have a broad spectrum of knowledge relating to the specialised subject and variety of skills, making them highly attractive both to potential employers and research establishments. Preparing for, and leading towards, the PhD in Music, the MA has been designed to provide graduates with advanced knowledge, understanding and skills in the chosen area of study.

93% of responding graduates between 2010 and 2013 reported that they are in full-time, part-time, self or unpaid employment and/or continuing study. Those graduates have entered a range of roles, including musicologist, administrator, music manager, freelance musician, research development officer and music teacher.

Our annual series of talks on Careers in Music offer a great chance to meet professionals active in a range of fields such as performance, music education, music journalism, arts and artist management, production and licensing, and composing for media.



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Be part of a lively popular-music research community that embraces everything from metal music to film scores and work alongside performers, composers and studio producers. Read more

Be part of a lively popular-music research community that embraces everything from metal music to film scores and work alongside performers, composers and studio producers.

You will join peers with backgrounds in cultural studies, sociology, music and the creative arts to explore today's local live music scene and its connection to the wider industry. From researching gigs and events to composing scores for film and television, you will discover how a variety of communities fuse together to create this vibrant and expanding scene.

Whether developing your songwriting and music editing techniques in our studios or organising events and liaising with artists at Leeds Festival, you will gain the hands-on experience employers are looking for while gathering evidence to carry through into your major research project.

With its combination of research and practice, your course will provide the perfect springboard to discover the interconnectivity of popular music and culture and engage with the vibrant and varied music scene in Leeds.

Course Benefits

As well as having access to modern, professional music studios, you will benefit from being taught by a highly-skilled and experienced teaching team, including Professor Karl Spracklen who is Secretary of the International Society for Metal Music Studies and the Editor of Metal Music Studies.

You will also have the chance to network with industry professionals during our guest lecture series. Previous speakers have included Leeds Festival boss Melvin Benn and chart-toppers Rudimental. We also have fantastic links with local and national music, arts and festival organisations, which help ensure you get the most from your course.

Artist in Residence Programme

The Artist in Residence programme gives our students an opportunity to work with professional artists and gives them a taste of what is it like to work on a professional music project. So far we have welcomed artists Chris T-T, Ian Prowse, I Monster, Tom Williams and Utah Saints.

Core modules

  • Popular Music as Leisure & Culture
  • Researching Popular Music & Culture
  • Popular Music Analysis
  • Popular Music in Contemporary Culture
  • Final Individual Project

Option modules

  • Studio Production Skills
  • Creative Music Production
  • Music Industries in Context
  • Music Industries in Practice

Job prospects

With more festivals and independent production companies than ever before, understanding the links between popular music, culture and the rapidly changing music industry is increasingly important, whether you are a researcher or practitioner. You could use the course to further your research interests by studying for a PhD or take up employment opportunities in sound engineering, performance, teaching, songwriting, production, music for film and television, music journalism, marketing and PR or events organisation.

  • Performer
  • Songwriter
  • Sound Technician
  • Events Organiser


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This flexible pathway provides a solid masters-level foundation in ethnomusicology. With a strong focus on theory, methodology and current debates in the discipline, together with appropriate research techniques and presentational styles, it offers excellent preparation for doctoral study and also for applied work. Read more

This flexible pathway provides a solid masters-level foundation in ethnomusicology. With a strong focus on theory, methodology and current debates in the discipline, together with appropriate research techniques and presentational styles, it offers excellent preparation for doctoral study and also for applied work. The programme of study consists of four taught course units (each 30 credits) plus a dissertation (60 credits). The combination of core and optional course units allows each student to plot a path that best matches his or her special interests and aspirations. Together, the taught units encompass a wide range of topics and approaches - from gender and ethnicity, music and conflict, music revivals and performance culture, to postcolonial theory and the politics of ethnography. Seminars allow for close collaboration between lecturers and students, with ample opportunity for students to present their own work and receive individual feedback. Discussion and debate forms an important part of most course units.

All students on the MusM Music programme take Advanced Music Studies: Skills and Methodologies as their core unit. Students on the Ethnomusicology pathway also take Studying World Music Cultures: Themes and Debates and, usually, Ethno/Musicology in Action: Fieldwork and Ethnography . Other optional course units normally include  Case Studies in Musicology: Texts and Histories ; and Historical or Contemporary Performance (subject to audition). A maximum of 30 credits may be chosen from another MA programme in the arts or social sciences (subject to availability and approval by the course tutor): possible options include Gender, Sexuality and the Body ; Filming History: Making Documentary Films for Research; and Documentary and Sensory Media . Students may also undertake a Work Placement with a local arts organisation or institution (by prior arrangement and subject to availability).

SALC Placement offers students the opportunity to spend a minimum of 20 days over a period of up to 12 weeks with an arts and cultural organisation, business or service provider. Placements will be established in Semester 1 to take place early in semester 2; they will be supervised by a work-based mentor and overseen by an academic staff member. The placement may take the form of an investigation of a specific business idea, development strategy or management proposition to resolve a problem or particular issue, and will result in a placement report, proposal or essay.

For further information about the content of individual course units, see Course Unit Details below.

Aims

This programme aims to:

  • —Build on undergraduate studies of music and society and the cultural study of music, introducing students to a wide range of advanced methodologies, theories, discourses and practices.
  • —Enable students to refine and develop their individual skills, talents and interests.
  • —Prepare students for a career, either inside or outside music, where critical judgement and developed powers of communication are needed.
  • —Foster the skills in critical thinking, argumentation, and effective written and oral communication necessary for further postgraduate study.
  • —Enable students to gain an expert and detailed knowledge of a specialist topic, and to formulate ideas that can later be pursued within further research programmes.

Teaching and learning

Most taught course units are delivered via weekly seminars and/or tutorials. Full-time students take two 30-credit course units per semester; part-time students take one. The dissertation is supported by one-to-one supervision and is submitted at the beginning of September. (Part-time students may submit in either September or December following their second year of study.)

Seminars feature a range of presentation formats and activities, including presentations by course tutors, student presentations, discussion and debate based on prepared reading or coursework tasks, and workshop-style activities. Members of the academic staff are also available for individual consultations during designated office hours.

Alongside their taught units, students have access to a range of non-assessed seminars, workshops and training sessions offered by the Graduate School of the School of Arts, Languages and Cultures. All postgraduate students are expected to undertake their own programme of self-directed learning and skills acquisition. This may also involve wider reading, language work, computer training and attendance at research seminars in other parts of the university.

Coursework and assessment

There are no formal examinations. Taught course units are assessed by coursework essays or other tasks, normally submitted at the end of each semester (January and May). The precise nature of the assessment varies according to what is appropriate to the course unit in question. In most cases, a choice of questions or topics is offered. All taught units must be satisfactorily completed. The dissertation (12,000-15,000 words) is based on independent research into a topic agreed in consultation with the supervisor. A Research Outline needs to be presented and approved (usually in February) before students proceed with their dissertation. All coursework is double-marked internally and moderated by the External Examiner. Recitals are heard by at least two internal examiners.

Career opportunities

Graduates of this programme have pursued successful careers in musical and non-musical fields. Some continue to further study via a PhD before securing an academic position. Some go on to teach in schools or further education, both in the UK and overseas. Other areas of work for which advanced musical training has been directly relevant include arts management and the culture industries, music publishing, music journalism, librarianship, music therapy and performance. Careers outside of music have included accountancy, law, social work and human resources.



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-Join a programme that is sharply tailored to respond to the current demand for creative professionals who are able to provide sound and music content for the film and video game industry. Read more
-Join a programme that is sharply tailored to respond to the current demand for creative professionals who are able to provide sound and music content for the film and video game industry
-Develop a showreel demonstrating your creative talent in composing music and designing sound for a wide range of media (video, film, video games), opening up a 360º horizon of possibilities and opportunities for work
-Collaborate with MA Film students in our School of Creative Arts
-Learn in the university’s top-class facilities, assisted by tutors who are themselves industry professionals

Why choose this course?

This course is conceived to meet the current industry’s demand for creative professionals who are equally versed in music composition as well as sound design, and can work effectively across a range of media – whether it’s video, narrative film or interactive games.

All aspects of the soundtrack are systematically explored in both linear and non-linear environments, leading to a fuller understanding of the discipline, of the industry, and of the production processes.

On this course, you will harness the whole gamut of sonic resources for your creative practice – from acoustic instruments to electroacoustic sound, utilising all the latest studio techniques and technologies.

You’ll study in the University’s top-class studios, supported by tutors who are experienced industry professionals, with potential to collaborate with students from our MA Film course.

With targeted sessions and expert guidance, you’ll develop a showreel demonstrating your creative talent in providing sound and music for a wide range of media (video, film, video games), opening up a 360º horizon of possibilities and opportunities for work.

What our students say

“The course is well structured, giving opportunities to explore the field of composition in a very broad way and also focus on particular areas of interest. I have genuinely found it exciting and inspiring to participate and I found the atmosphere just as I hoped: creative, relevant, stimulating, professional and fun.”
Nicola Hutchison, teacher at Hertfordshire College of Music and active multidisciplinary artist

"The MSc Composition course was a real eye-opener as to the many applications of composition, allowing me to produce work far beyond the realms of what I thought possible."
Chris Moorhead, freelance composer for media, and session player

"It has been a life changing experience for me, and that is no overstatement. Your particularly vigorous and passionate dedication to cracking open our own personal artistic consciousness underpinned a revelatory roller coaster ride from which I learned and will continue to learn a great deal."
Alex Simler, instrumental teacher at Hertfordshire Music Services

Careers

Graduates from this programme will be ideally positioned to pursue a career in the thriving field of acoustic/electroacoustic composition and sound design for film, television, and interactive games. You may, in addition, consider positions in music publishing, music journalism and criticism, teaching or you may continue your higher education at doctoral level.

Graduate successes

Sebastien Crossley graduated in 2010, and is currently composing for a new Channel 4 sitcom.

Nichola Hutchison graduated in 2011 and teaches composition at Hertfordshire College of Music. She is also active as a multidisciplinary artist creating A/V installations for galleries.

Chris Barn graduated in 2012 and is composing for the Channel 4 Random Acts series with renowned poet Benjamin Zephaniah.

Edward Abela graduated in 2013, and has composed for several short films for SABB productions, SMMusic Library, and Candie & Bell, amongst others.

2014 graduate Jamie Stonehouse is now working as an assistant composer and audio engineer at media company Urban Soul Orchestra, and has just been awarded a 3-year studentship for doctoral studies at Kent University.

Callum Judd graduated in 2015 and is working as a free lance composer for a variety of commercial projects, including a documentary on Japan.

Teaching methods

Lecture, seminars and tutorials are typically scheduled over two consecutive days a week, plus some extra sessions for particular workshops, performance, recording, as necessary. In addition to scheduled sessions, students are expected to engage in continuous self-directed study and studio practice.

Structure

Core Modules
-Creative Economies
-Major Study:Music Projects
-Music, Media and Production (Discourse/Reflection)
-Practice 1:Soundtrack and the Cinematic
-Practice 2: Soundtrack in Digital and Interactive Media
-Research and Enquiry

Optional
-Creative Economies (Online)
-Research and Enquiry (Online)

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This flexible pathway provides a solid masters-level foundation in musicology. With a strong focus on theory, methodology and current debates in the discipline, together with appropriate research techniques and presentational styles, it offers excellent preparation for doctoral study and also for applied work. Read more

This flexible pathway provides a solid masters-level foundation in musicology. With a strong focus on theory, methodology and current debates in the discipline, together with appropriate research techniques and presentational styles, it offers excellent preparation for doctoral study and also for applied work. The programme of study consists of four taught course units (each 30 credits) plus a dissertation or critical edition (60 credits). The combination of core and optional course units allows each student to plot a path that best matches his or her special interests and aspirations. Together, the taught units encompass a wide range of topics and approaches - from musicology as cultural history, through musicology and the body, source studies and performance practice, to postcolonial theory and postmodernism. Seminars allow for close collaboration between lecturers and students, with ample opportunity for students to present their own work and receive individual feedback. Discussion and debate forms an important part of most course units.

All students on the MusM Music programme take Advanced Music Studies: Skills and Methodologies as their core unit. Students on the Musicology pathway also take Case Studies in Musicology: Texts and Histories . Optional course units normally include Contemporary Music Studies ; Historical and Editorial Skills ; Studying World Music Cultures: Themes and Debates  Historical or Contemporary Performance(subject to audition); Advanced Orchestration ; and Ethno/Musicology in Action: Fieldwork and Ethnography . A maximum of 30 credits may be chosen from another MA programme in the arts or social sciences (subject to availability and approval by the course tutor): possible options include From Papyrus to Print: The History of the Book; Perspectives on Medieval and Renaissance Studies ; andGender, Sexuality and the Bod y.

SALC Placement offers students the opportunity to spend a minimum of 20 days over a period of up to 12 weeks with an arts and cultural organisation, business or service provider. Placements will be established in Semester 1 to take place early in semester 2; they will be supervised by a work-based mentor and overseen by an academic staff member. The placement may take the form of an investigation of a specific business idea, development strategy or management proposition to resolve a problem or particular issue, and will result in a placement report, proposal or essay.

Aims

This programme aims to:

  • —Build on undergraduate studies of music and society and the cultural study of music, introducing students to a wide range of advanced methodologies, theories, discourses and practices.
  • —Enable students to refine and develop their individual skills, talents and interests.
  • —Prepare students for a career, either inside or outside music, where critical judgement and developed powers of communication are needed.
  • —Foster the skills in critical thinking, argumentation, and effective written and oral communication necessary for further postgraduate study.
  • —Enable students to gain an expert and detailed knowledge of a specialist topic, and to formulate ideas that can later be pursued within further research programmes.

Teaching and learning

Most taught course units are delivered via weekly seminars and/or tutorials. Full-time students take two 30-credit course units per semester; part-time students take one. The dissertation or critical edition is supported by one-to-one supervision and is submitted at the beginning of September. (Part-time students may submit in either September or December following their second year of study.)

Seminars feature a range of presentation formats and activities, including presentations by course tutors, student presentations, discussion and debate based on prepared reading or coursework tasks, and workshop-style activities. Members of the academic staff are also available for individual consultations during designated office hours.

Alongside their taught units, students have access to a range of non-assessed seminars, workshops and training sessions offered by the Graduate School of the School of Arts, Languages and Cultures. All postgraduate students are expected to undertake their own programme of self-directed learning and skills acquisition. This may also involve wider reading, language work, computer training and attendance at research seminars in other parts of the university.

Coursework and assessment

There are no formal examinations. Taught course units are assessed by coursework essays or other tasks, normally submitted at the end of each semester (January and May). The precise nature of the assessment varies according to what is appropriate to the course unit in question. In most cases, a choice of questions or topics is offered. All taught units must be satisfactorily completed. The dissertation or critical edition (12,000-15,000 words or equivalent) is based on independent research into a topic agreed in consultation with the supervisor. A Research Outline needs to be presented and approved (usually in February) before students proceed with their dissertation. All coursework is double-marked internally and moderated by the External Examiner. Recitals are heard by at least two internal examiners.

Career opportunities

Graduates of this programme have pursued successful careers in musical and non-musical fields. Some continue to further study via a PhD before securing an academic position. Some go on to teach in schools or further education, both in the UK and overseas. Other areas of work for which advanced musical training has been directly relevant include arts management and the culture industries, music publishing, music journalism, librarianship, music therapy and performance. Careers outside of music have included accountancy, law, social work and human resources.  One of our graduates writes of how the skills she honed at Manchester helped prepare her for her first job as an Editorial Assistant at Oxford University Press: `I use my written/essay skills in text editing (prefaces, composer notes, biographies etc.) and in preparing sales copy; analytical skills are continually employed during the editing process; the discipline of editing and proofing your own work is as important in my job as it was in my studies; the research skills that I developed during my time at Manchester have been useful in source research and in checking the factual accuracy of texts; and general skills such as planning and time management have been helpful preparation for the world of work.'



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The MA in Music offers advanced training in either musicology or composition. The modular structure allows students to pursue a broad generalist programme or to specialise in a particular area of their choice. Read more
The MA in Music offers advanced training in either musicology or composition. The modular structure allows students to pursue a broad generalist programme or to specialise in a particular area of their choice. Within the field of musicology, students can slant their studies towards one or several of the following: music in nineteenth-century culture, opera studies, popular music studies or film music. The composition pathway, meanwhile, provides a practice-based contemporary composition curriculum that encourages students to push the boundaries of their practice and develop a voice as an engaged and creative composer.

This course is unusual in combining a rigorous academic education with the opportunity to acquire vocational skills through our innovative Professional Experience module. Students take up work placements with a wide range of external arts organisations or undertake a project with one of our specialist research units. The course therefore offers rich opportunities for career development and can pave the way for further study at PhD level if so required.

Why choose this course?

-The flexible structure of the MA Music allows you to tailor the course to your particular interests. The course is one of very few Music MAs in the UK to offer professional experience as part of the course; you can undertake a work placement with an external organisation such as a radio station, opera house, museum, music publisher, magazine, concert promoter or school. Alternatively, you can undertake a project with one of our specialist research units. Recent students, for example, worked at the Handel-Hendrix House Museum, the Royal Shakespeare Company and the Audiograft festival.

The course is taught by experts who are internationally renowned in their fields. Our research informs the content and methodology of our modules, ensuring that teaching is at the cutting edge of the discipline. Following REF 2014 Music has been singled out as an area of particular research strength within the University.Our staff disseminate their research to wider audiences via appearances on BBC Radio 3, articles in the national press and talks for major performing organisations. The activities of our research units in opera (OBERTO), popular music (PMRU), or sonic art (SARU) complement the programme of formal study. MA students can contribute to the research units' activities, for instance by participating in listening groups and helping to organise study days and conferences. Student composers have an opportunity to showcase their work through the annual Audiograft festival. Opera students go on a field trip to hear a live opera, usually in London.

Oxford is a fabulous city in which to study music, with a very lively concert scene and excellent research facilities. You will have access to the world-famous Bodleian Library and the new Brookes library also offers substantial collections centring on the specialist areas of the MA.

The course provides an excellent foundation for doctoral study for those who wish to continue into a career in academia.

This course in detail

Students studying for the MA/PG Dip in Music are required to complete the following compulsory modules* (30 credits):
-Research Skills and Applied Research
-Professional Experience

MA students are also required to complete the following (60 credits):
-Dissertation / Major Project

You will then take two of the following modules depending on your chosen specialism (30 credits each):
Composition Pathway
-Approaches to Experimental Composition and Sound Arts
-Electroacoustic and Live Electronic Composition

Musicology pathway
-Advanced Musicology 1: 19th-Century Music Studies
-Advanced Musicology 1: Film Music Studies
-Advanced Musicology 2: Popular Music Studies
-Advanced Musicology 2:Opera Studies

*As our courses are reviewed regularly for quality assurance purposes, course content and module choices may change from the details given here.

Teaching and learning

The MA in Music is taught through a combination of seminars, tutorials and skills-based workshops. Those taking a work placement will also receive mentoring and formative feedback from an individual at the placement organisation.

During your time here you will engage in lively discussions and original research. We aim to give you an in-depth understanding of recent critical debates, scholarship and practice in your chosen field, as well as to broaden your knowledge of musical repertoire.

Our pathways are original, exciting and flexible and one of the most striking features of the Music Department is its breadth of subject expertise. All staff members in Music are actively engaged in research and we have published our work in top journals and with the most highly respected publishers: our research in popular music, opera and sonic art was identified as 'world-leading' in the 2014 REF.

You will have an opportunity to work closely with staff members not only through the course modules but also through our specialist research units in popular music, opera and sonic art. Membership of these units allows you to attend conferences, workshops and talks by visiting speakers that will complement your formal studies.

Careers and professional development

Having an MA will make you stand out from the crowd, whether you are joining the course straight after graduating from undergraduate study or returning to study after a break of several years.

Our MA will provide you with the skills and knowledge to embark upon a career in music or to improve your current position. The transferable skills you acquire through studying for an MA in Music can also lead to careers in many other sectors, including management, law, journalism, media and the heritage industry.

Career destinations of our recent graduates include:
-Professional composition
-Performance
-Sound engineering
-Arts administration
-HE administration
-Teaching (secondary and FE)
-Retail management
-Youth work

Our programme provides the necessary research training for doctoral work and many MA students continue on into further research and pursue careers in academia. Our students have an excellent success rate in securing funded PhD places.

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