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Masters Degrees (Song Writing)

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Our challenging, practice-based course offers you a unique approach to the practice of writing, emphasising innovation and experimentation in your work. Read more
Our challenging, practice-based course offers you a unique approach to the practice of writing, emphasising innovation and experimentation in your work.

On our MA Creative Writing, you deepen your knowledge of literary tradition, exploring different modes and genres in order to develop your own creative and expressive written skills. You expand your use of creative writing techniques and improve your critical judgement of your own work.

Our course encourages you to develop your writing by stepping outside your comfort zone and discovering the different approaches to verbal art that are possible today. This will invigorate your own practice, whether you are writing psychogeography, plays, novels, stories or something else. You will choose from a variety of modules, covering topics such as:
-Development of a novel plan, from research and concept-development, to plotting, character, and structure
-Experimental language play of the Oulipo group across the short story, autobiography, cartoons, cookery and theatre
-Relating magic to writing and creativity, both in theory and in practice
-Psychogeography, writing about walking, place, landscape, history and the psychic environment
-Poetic practice across experimental writing in poetry from the performative to the visual

To help you hone your craft, we also host two Royal Literary Fund Fellows, professional writers on-hand to help you develop your writing on a one-to-one basis, and regularly host talks and readings by visiting writers.

Essex has nurtured a long tradition of distinguished authors whose work has shaped literature as we know it today, from past giants such as the American poets Robert Lowell and Ted Berrigan, to contemporary writers such as mythographer and novelist Dame Marina Warner, and Booker Prize winner Ben Okri.

We are ranked Top 20 in the UK (Guardian University Guide 2015, and three-quarters of our research is rated ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’ (REF 2014).

This course is also available on a part-time basis.

Our expert staff

Our teaching staff are experienced and established writers who have a breadth of experience across literary genres, from novels, prose and plays, to poetry and song.

Our creative writing teaching team has a breadth of experience in the literatures of different cultures and different forms. Our current teaching staff include poet and short story writer Philip Terry, lyric writer and essayist Adrian May, novelist and camper Matthew de Abaitua, poet and performance-writer Holly Pester, poet, fisherman and memoirist Chris McCully, and award-winning playwrights Elizabeth Kuti and Jonathan Lichtenstein.

Our Centre for Creative Writing is part of a unique literary conservatoire that offers students the skills, support and confidence to respond artistically and critically to the study of writing with the guidance of experts.

Specialist facilities

-Write for our student magazine Albert or host a Red Radio show
-View classic films at weekly film screenings in our dedicated 120-seat film theatre
-Hear writers talk about their craft and learn from leading literature specialists at regular talks and readings
-Our on-campus Lakeside Theatre has been established as a major venue for good drama, staging both productions by professional touring companies and a wealth of new work written, produced and directed by our own staff and students
-Improve your playwriting skills at our Lakeside Theatre Writers workshops
-Our Research Laboratory allows you to collaborate with professionals, improvising and experimenting with new work which is being tried and tested

Your future

Many of our students have gone on to successfully publish their work, notable recent alumni including:
-Ida Løkås, who won a literary prize in Norway for The Beauty That Flows Past, securing a book deal
-Alexia Casale, whose novel Bone Dragon was published by Faber & Faber and subsequently featured on both the Young Adult Books of the Year 2013 list for The Financial Times, and The Independent’s Books of the year 2013: Children
-Elaine Ewert, recent graduate from our MA Wild Writing, placed second in the New Welsh Writing Awards 2015
-Patricia Borlenghi, the founder of Patrician Press, which has published works by a number of our alumni
-Petra Mcqueen, who has written for The Guardian and runs creative writing courses

We also offer supervision for PhD, MPhil and MA by Dissertation in different literatures and various approaches to literature, covering most aspects of early modern and modern writing in English, plus a number of other languages.

Our University is one of only 11 AHRC-accredited Doctoral Training Centres in the UK. This means that we offer funded PhD studentships which also provide a range of research and training opportunities.

A number of our Department of Literature, Film, and Theatre Studies graduates have gone on to undertake successful careers as writers, and others are now established as scholars, university lecturers, teachers, publishers, publishers’ editors, journalists, arts administrators, theatre artistic directors, drama advisers, and translators.

We work with our Employability and Careers Centre to help you find out about further work experience, internships, placements, and voluntary opportunities.

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Bath Spa has pioneered the teaching of songwriting, and launched the world's first Songwriting Master’s degree in 2007. Its blend of practical, theoretical and scholarly practice is taught by published, practicing songwriters and academics. Read more
Bath Spa has pioneered the teaching of songwriting, and launched the world's first Songwriting Master’s degree in 2007. Its blend of practical, theoretical and scholarly practice is taught by published, practicing songwriters and academics. The course is aimed at unpublished songwriters wishing to develop their craft to a professional level, or published songwriters wishing to achieve academic accreditation whilst continuing their creative development. Based at our postgraduate centre at Corsham Court, and also offered as a distance learning option, the course maintains strong links with industry through publishers, guest artists and guest lecturers, and offers the chance to consolidate and focus your creative output whilst developing a perspective on your work informed by research. You'll study with us on Mmus Songwriting so that you can:

• Comment critically upon your own and others’ material
• Examine the musicological roots of your craft
• Consider the commercial value of your songs in the marketplace
• Rewrite and collaborate
• Conduct academic research
• Develop technical skills
• Create a professional-standard portfolio of your work
• Establish networks, collaborators and contacts


The course is available on either a full-time (typically one year) or part- time (typically two year) basis. We also offer a low-residency ‘distance learning’ option that will be open to both UK and overseas applicants. The course aims:

• To enable you to write and record songs to a professional level
• To develop critical awareness relating to your own songs and others'
• To develop your ability to perform/present your songs
• To inform you of historical and musicological developments in songwriting
• To enhance your understanding of the market value ((and artistic value) of your own work
• To provide opportunities for you to discuss current developments in songwriting with songwriters, producers and publishers
• To encourage you to develop re-writing and collaborative songwriting skills
• To help you to develop technical skills relevant to songwriting practice
• To develop your academic writing skills at level 7


Songwriting Skills: As an essential component of this module you will engage weekly with a series of preparatory creative writing and compositional exercises designed to supply you with the raw creative material from which to increase your lyrical, harmonic and melodic range. These exercises are technique-based and serve to extend your creative palette and songwriting choices. Tutorial and group-playback support engage real-time with critical feedback and professional advice. Online virtual classroom exercises are supported by instruction videos and examine imagery, metaphor, narrative, rhyme, meter, melody, harmonic construction, narrative perspectives, intertextuality and rhetorical principles.

History of Song: Through this module you will gain a systematic and comprehensive knowledge of strategies and form used in popular songwriting. You will also develop an advanced ability to contextualize your own songs. With reference to popular songs written between 1920 and the present day, a series of lectures examines key developments in the musical, lyrical and structural development of song. The teaching approach is analytical and particular attention is paid to strategies used by songwriters to convey ideas.

Context and Methodology: In this module, visiting professional practitioners deliver master-classes to explore particular ecologies within the songwriting profession. In master-classes and seminars, students explore diverse songwriting contexts such as writing for musical theatre, writing for the charts, writing to pitch-sheets and writing for an original performer. Research methods and postgraduate research methodology skills are then utilised to explore a possible blend of contexts identified by the student as being potential markets for their music. Becoming aware of the modalities and nuances of these cultures is the key to successful songwriting. In preparation for the Major Project portfolio, this module serves to refine your eventual work by investigating the cultural, semiotic, linguistic, musicological, economic and pragmatic structures of your intended song culture. This is a key Level 7 module, with a generic research emphasis designed to prepare the student for further postgraduate and doctoral study.

Collaborative Songwriting: This module aims to develop skills in collaborative songwriting, enabling you to experience a variety of collaborative methods, and to explore the relationship between collaborative process and final song product. Although primarily based around a systematic understanding of the creative process of collaboration, the module also helps students to explore collaborative works in their cultural and economic context, including royalty splits, publishing implications, and issues of shared Intellectual Property between joint creators.

Major Project: This double module represents the culmination of the MMus, and a chance for you to work on a substantial album/portfolio project. The module will be largely student-led, with most of the work centered on individual practice. You will receive tutorial support.


Bath Spa’s approach to the teaching of songwriting combines analysis of existing repertoire with a focus on song crafting technique and students are encouraged to develop by writing new songs throughout the course. Lectures, seminars and tutorials combine to offer a range of expert and peer critique that seeks to enable the student to examine original and known works in a range of critical and technical contexts. Students have access to laptop-based recording equipment and the programme has its own dedicated facilities. The curriculum is supported by a Virtual Learning Environment, so course materials can be accessed from any web link.

Recording Facilities - while our studio facilities are designed to enable the capture of high quality recordings, in keeping with contemporary songwriting industry practice it is anticipated that learners will become self-sufficient in the sense that, following completion of the course, they will be able to repeat the core processes of writing, planning and recording without incurring recording studio expenses. To enable mastery of the home recording process, students have access to laptop based ‘notepad’ setups and industry-standard plug-ins (Stylus, MachFive, BFD, Trilogy, Waves etc) throughout their studies.


Assessment takes the form of individual assignments for each module. Typical assessments include audio CD, presentation, essay, and evaluative account. Assessment is continuous and there are no written exams.

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Become a qualified music therapist to facilitate people’s move towards well-being through specific therapeutic aims using a primarily non-verbal relationship in music. Read more


Become a qualified music therapist to facilitate people’s move towards well-being through specific therapeutic aims using a primarily non-verbal relationship in music. Music Therapy as practised in Great Britain is largely based on improvisation, the music being the shared, and the spontaneous creation of client and therapist.

The Music Therapy programme offers training for competent, practising musicians to become therapists, bringing together their skills, education and other life experiences. On completion of the training, graduates are eligible to apply to the HCPC for registration, with the ability and flexibility to practice within the NHS, Social Services, education or private sector.

Essential to music therapy is the relationship between client and therapist. At Roehampton we have chosen to base our Music Therapy training programme on the use of psychoanalytic ideas to inform our understanding of the therapy process and the ways the client works with the environment, the therapist and the music. Broader theories and ways of working are also studied in order to equip students to meet a range of clinical need. Other styles of music, including song writing, the use of technology and pre-composed music are also used as appropriate to the need of the individual.

The course emphasises your emotional development as a practitioner, together with clinical exploration through critical enquiry. In addition to this, students must be prepared to enter mandatory individual personal therapy for one year of the training.

Music Therapists work within a wide range of clinical settings, individual and group work. They work with people of all ages; from infants and young children through to elderly adults. Music therapy can benefit people with a wide range of difficulties or challenges, including mental health problems, learning disabilities and autism, dementia and neurology, as well as people experiencing serious illness such as cancer or those who have experienced trauma.


The programme aims to encourage a critical and evaluative approach to both theory and practice in music therapy. It is designed to prepare students for work with children and adults with a range of disabilities and illnesses, and placements usually include work with children and adults with learning disabilities, autism and Asperger’s syndrome and mental health problems.

After visits to a variety of workplaces which offer music therapy, you will undertake individual and group work in two contrasting settings over six months, January to June (first placement) and September to February/March (second placement).These clinical placements will provide you with music therapy work experience alongside qualified Music Therapists. You will also participate in an experiential group, which gives you an opportunity to develop your own self-awareness and examine personal and group dynamics through verbal and musical processes. In addition, it is a requirement for you to find and fund personal individual therapy outside the course.

Key areas of study include human development and growth and the clinical context for music therapy, clinical improvisation, observational studies, music therapy theory, clinical case work and supervision, introduction to research and your dissertation. Personal development and reflection on this is central throughout the programme.

We also offer introductory courses that provide a useful background to those working in related professions or anyone simply wishing to find out more about the work. No particular level of musical competence is required.

For detailed information about Roehampton's MA Music Therapy, please download and read the information pack by clicking on the 'specific entry requirements' link on the course page.

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Be part of a lively popular music research community that embraces everything from metal music to film scores with the opportunity to work alongside performers… Read more
Be part of a lively popular music research community that embraces everything from metal music to film scores with the opportunity to work alongside performers, composers and studio experts.This course is about the here and now - you will study everything from folk to jazz, right through to rock, hip-hop and dance, developing your knowledge of contemporary popular music.You'll join peers from backgrounds in cultural studies, sociology, music and the creative arts to explore today's local live music scene and its connection to the wider national and international industry. From getting out into the Leeds area and conducting ethnographic research into local gigs and events, to composing scores for film and television, you'll discover how a wide variety of communities fuse together to create what is recognised as a vibrant and expanding scene.Whether it's developing your music editing techniques in our studios, or organising events and liaising with artists at Leeds Festival, you'll gain the hands-on experience employers are looking for, gathering evidence for your major research project.This course is the perfect springboard to make contacts, help you discover the interconnectivity of popular music and culture, and really engage with a vibrant and varied scene which covers everything from metal right through to country.

Visit the website http://courses.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/popularmusicandculture_ma

Mature Applicants

Our University welcomes applications from mature applicants who demonstrate academic potential. We usually require some evidence of recent academic study, for example completion of an access course, however recent relevant work experience may also be considered. Please note that for some of our professional courses all applicants will need to meet the specified entry criteria and in these cases work experience cannot be considered in lieu.

If you wish to apply through this route you should refer to our University Recognition of Prior Learning policy that is available on our website (http://www.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/studenthub/recognition-of-prior-learning.htm).

Please note that all applicants to our University are required to meet our standard English language requirement of GCSE grade C or equivalent, variations to this will be listed on the individual course entry requirements.


With more festivals and independent producers and artists than ever before, the need for live music and industry professionals has soared.

Employment opportunities could be open to you in sound engineering, performance, teaching, song writing, production, music for film and television, music journalism, marketing and PR, and events organisation.

Alternatively you may wish to further your research by studying for a PhD.

- Performer
- Songwriter
- Sound Technician
- Events Organiser

Careers advice: The dedicated Jobs and Careers team offers expert advice and a host of resources to help you choose and gain employment. Whether you're in your first or final year, you can speak to members of staff from our Careers Office who can offer you advice from writing a CV to searching for jobs.

Visit the careers site - https://www.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/employability/jobs-careers-support.htm

Course Benefits

As well as having access to modern, professional music studios, you'll 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'll 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.

Core Modules

Popular Music as Leisure & Culture
Examine the importance of popular music as a form of leisure and culture. You will explore music subcultures through sociology, cultural geography, cultural studies and leisure theory.

Researching Popular Music & Culture
Develop an understanding of the strategies used in the study of popular music and culture, drawing on advanced approaches from sociology, musicology, cultural studies, ethnography, leisure and other relevant areas.

Popular Music Analysis
Examine performance, record production, video and reception and the meaning of music for your small scale, individual research project which focuses on the analysis of popular music artefacts.

Popular Music in Contemporary Culture
Engage in debate and discussion of how, where and why certain strands of musical productivity and creativity remain constantly part of the vocabulary of popular music.

Final Individual Project
Combine your learning into a significant piece of work, the nature of which will be determined by yourself and the course team.

Option Modules

Studio Production Skills
Produce a series of sound design projects and create your own systems for the purpose of manipulating/processing sound which will demonstrate your understanding of the concepts behind the tools used for sound design.

Creative Music Production
Develop a broad understanding of the creative possibilities of the studio environment by investigating a range of theoretical, technical, and creative approaches to the production process.

Music Industries in Context
Develop a range of theoretical perspectives drawing on contemporary research into the ecology of the music industries and how different stakeholders across the music sector work together.

Music Industries in Practice
Investigate a host of contemporary issues affecting the practice of operating in the music industries, focusing on one key area determined by your own interests.


- Library
Our libraries are two of the only university libraries in the UK open 24/7 every day of the year. However you like to study, the libraries have got you covered with group study, silent study, extensive e-learning resources and PC suites.

- Broadcasting Place
Broadcasting Place provides students with creative and contemporary learning environments, is packed with the latest technology and is a focal point for new and innovative thinking in the city.

Find out how to apply here - http://www.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/postgraduate/how-to-apply/

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A rigorously demanding course, the MMus degree offers an opportunity to develop your musicianship and academic skills to a very high level in a range of subject areas. Read more
A rigorously demanding course, the MMus degree offers an opportunity to develop your musicianship and academic skills to a very high level in a range of subject areas.

The course allows students to study a broad range of topics and disciplines in music and musicology, including practical disciplines in Performance, Composition, and Conducting, and research in areas such as Music Psychology, Music Education, Music Arts and Health, Historical Musicology and Contemporary Musicology. Whether you are hoping to enhance your understanding of music for a future research or professional career, the modules offered in this course will equip you for further study and professional life.

Visit the website: https://www.canterbury.ac.uk/study-here/courses/postgraduate/master-of-music.aspx

Course detail

The programme offers you the opportunity to enhance your musical, compositional, performance, analytical, critical and research skills. In addition, you will apply these skills to your individual areas of interest in specific optional modules in written and practical disciplines. The choices of independent study modules mean that you will develop your performance, composition, conducting or research to MMus level whilst enhancing your knowledge of the wider field and contextualising your work within your chosen discipline.

The School of Music and Performing Arts is a community of more than 600 students from foundation to doctorate level, dedicated to creating and recreating music, dance and drama; all contributing to the musical and performing arts life of the University, the city of Canterbury and the wider community in the south east of England. This vibrant community offers exciting opportunities for interdisciplinary collaboration as well as more specialised subject­specific work. The degree is offered either as a one year full­time, or two year part­time course.

The taught sessions usually take place on one day of the week (usually Thursday), allowing you to continue with part-time work alongside your studies if you wish.


The Master of Music programme aims to produce graduates who are accomplished and confident musicians and/or musicologists, who are able to work at a professional level within their specialist fields of study and who are prepared for further study at PhD level. The programme will develop your technical, conceptual and critical skills which will allow you to engage with music and musicology in a sophisticated and insightful way. The curriculum is designed to allow you to pursue specialist fields of study to an advanced level, including undertaking an extensive independent project or dissertation of your choosing, while developing a keen sense of context for those fields within the broader discipline of music.

Because the majority of teaching happens on just one day of the week (usually Thursday), the course is ideal for students who wish to continue working alongside their studies.


Within the course, you'll take modules to a total of 180 credits.

You'll choose from one of the following individual study areas (60 credits each):
• Performance (solo instrumental or vocal performance)
• Conducting
• Composition/Creative Audio (e.g., acoustic composition, electroacoustic composition, popular song writing, sound art)
• Research Project in a chosen area of musicology (e.g., music psychology, music education, music and health, historical musicology, contemporary musicology)

You have four core modules to complete (4 x 20 credits):
• Research Methods
• Analysis
• Contextual Studies
• Criticism

And then you choose one each from the following pairs of optional modules (2 x 20 credits):
• Aesthetics OR Music Psychology and Health
• Performance Project OR Creative Project


Your specialist field of study will be tackled primarily through independent learning, supported by either tutorials or instrumental or conducting lessons as appropriate. Students undertaking independent study in similar disciplines will meet for workshops and seminars during the year as they develop their work.

Supporting this, critical and contextual awareness will be explicitly developed through core modules, which are delivered through seminars that may be student-led. The option modules allow students to explore highly specific areas of music and musicology, through lecture- and seminar-based teaching, and to undertake projects within their own interests through seminars and workshop-based learning.


You will be assessed through a wide range of assignments throughout the programme. These include musical performance, composition portfolios, written work, research posters, presentations and learning journals, and will be specific to the disciplines and modules that you choose to study.

The independent study modules will be assessed through a major project in each, with performance and conducting assessed through a recital, composition through a portfolio, and research project through a dissertation.

What can I do next?

Graduates of the MMus course typically go on to a range of careers which have included portfolio careers in music, performance and composition, working in a professional studio, music education and music research at PhD level.

How to apply

For information on how to apply, please follow this link: https://www.canterbury.ac.uk/study-here/how-to-apply/how-to-apply.aspx


-Masters Loans-

From 2016/17 government loans of up to £10,000 are available for postgraduate Masters study. The loans will be paid directly to students by the Student Loans Company and will be subject to both personal and course eligibility criteria.

For more information available here: https://www.canterbury.ac.uk/study-here/funding-your-degree/funding-your-postgraduate-degree.aspx

-2017/18 Entry Financial Support-

Information on alternative funding sources is available here: https://www.canterbury.ac.uk/study-here/funding-your-degree/2017-18-entry-financial-support.aspx

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The MA Songwriting and Production course is delivered in the context of a dynamic contemporary music and cultural scene in Wales. Read more
The MA Songwriting and Production course is delivered in the context of a dynamic contemporary music and cultural scene in Wales. You will study close to a range of music venues, recording, radio, TV and film studios, as well as many music organisations, and with access to high profile, successful musicians and other industry professionals.

This innovative degree will enable you to make connections and collaborations within the world of both professional songwriting, and the wider music culture. Designed for those interested in lyrics, music and studio production, you’ll learn a range of creative techniques, as well as the history of popular song and the world of music publishing. For your final project, you will create an original portfolio of work to be showcased at the state-of-the art ATRiuM Building, situated in Cardiff – the vibrant capital city of Wales, a thriving international hub for music and the creative industries.

On completion, graduates will have the expertise and experience to work professionally within a range of different contexts. Taught by practising songwriters, producers, and published academics, the course is also delivered through a series of master classes from industry professionals.

If you choose to study on a creative postgraduate course at the University of South Wales, you will also benefit from being part of a vibrant international student community.

See the website http://courses.southwales.ac.uk/courses/1558-ma-songwriting-and-production

What you will study

Selection of Modules include:
- Songwriting 1: Skills and Strategies
- Digital Music Production
- History, Analysis, Repertoire and Theory
- Research Paradigms
- Creative and Cultural Entrepreneurship
- Research and Practice in the Creative and Cultural Industries
- Songwriting 2: Creative Co-writing
- Recording
- Performance: Practice and Presentation
- Major Project Portfolio OR Research Project (Learning Through Employment)

Research methods, business practice, publishing and promotion are embedded in all modules.

Common Modules:
The Faculty understands the importance of a strong grounding in research knowledge and skills, enterprise and innovation as part of a balanced postgraduate education.

We also recognise that each student has different requirements of their postgraduate experience.

You can choose to study one of the following three, 20 credit common modules. Each of these has a different focus, enabling you to select the module that will be most beneficial to you.

- Creative and Cultural Entrepreneurship
This module aims to develop your knowledge of the methods to identify, develop and manage enterprise and innovation in the creative sector. It will then help you apply this to your own entrepreneurial project.

- Research and Practice in the Creative and Cultural Industries
The focus of this module is on the development of research knowledge and skills, while also encouraging critical engagement with approaches to creative practice. You will also explore ideas, debates and issues in the creative and cultural industries.

- Research Paradigms
This module focuses on research paradigms and their theoretical underpinnings. It also looks at key conceptual tools drawn from a wide range of subject areas relevant to postgraduate research in the creative industries.

PLEASE NOTE: Modules are subject to change.

Learning and teaching methods

The course incorporates desktop and studio-based production processes, with key business skills such as publishing, promotion, distribution and session planning.

Emphasis is on practical activities and encouraging you to find your own voice when developing material. Teaching sessions take place in a supportive environment, where students provide feedback on each others work. Practical sessions are underpinned by skills development and an understanding of theories about best practice in songwriting and production.

The course embraces singer/performer songwriters, as well as those who do not wish to perform their own material; solo and group outputs; creative collaboration; and material produced in studio/digital environments. The degree can also be studied by distance learning; UK and international students may choose to study using their own studio base and equipment.

“In an ever-changing industry where listening formats, recording processes and budgets are constantly evolving, songwriting and production are still a good way for a musician to have a long, fulfilling and successful career. It is hugely encouraging to see the University of South Wales offering [songwriting and production] to masters degree level. Creative areas can often be solitary places, so the opportunity to learn from others and share ideas in a creative environment such as the ATRiuM should prove an invaluable experience.”
Greg Haver, Record Producer – The Manic Street Preachers

Work Experience and Employment Prospects

In addition to working professionally as a songwriter or in song production, potential careers for graduates of this course could include working as facilitators in community and arts outreach activities, as educators in formal teaching settings, and as practitioners
such as performers, producers and writers.

There are also opportunities as researchers, administrators/managers of organisations, festivals and music events, or within music journalism and publishing, A & R, radio, freelance production, music promotion, or as part of other media production teams such as advertising, event management and games.

Assessment methods

Learning activities focus on the needs of individual students and are designed to accommodate students with a range of ambitions in relation to different kinds of approaches to songwriting and song production. Emphasis is placed on practical activities and on encouraging students to find their own voice when developing their material.

Teaching sessions take place in a supportive environment, where students provide feedback on each others work. Practical sessions are underpinned by skills development and an understanding of theories about/best practices in songwriting and song production.

‘I’d like to support the MA Songwriting course. It being the only course of its kind in Wales it will be a hugely valuable addition to the ATRiuM choice of courses. The teaching staff’s experience with writing and the music industry will also be a valuable asset to the course … I often meet students who study at the Atrium and the breadth of courses, and the skills they are developing and injecting back into Welsh music should be applauded. I look forward to hearing more output from this course, and the songwriters of the future coming from it onto our airwaves.’
Bethan Elfyn, DJ BBC Radio Wales

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At least 55 million people world wide claim Scots descent. Read more
At least 55 million people world wide claim Scots descent. This exciting and unique postgraduate course allows the culture of the Highlands and Islands to be explored wherever you are, whether you are part of the Scots diaspora keen to find out about your heritage or just want to find out more about the Highlands and Islands of Scotland.

Students will be studying folklore, customs, belief systems, music, song, literary heritage and much, much more. Come and immerse yourself in the lived experience of Highlands and islands communities!

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.
• Unique course content not available anywhere else
• You are taught by international experts in the field, including the team at the Centre for Nordic Studies
• We use video conferencing and a virtual learning environment to deliver the course so you can study from anywhere in the world
• Small class sizes
• You can also choose unique options in palaeography, creative writing and the North Atlantic World
• You can study individual modules for personal or professional development, or work towards the PgCert, PgDip, or full Masters degree



Core modules are:

The Gaelic Legacy
The Highlands and Islands Story
Traditional Customs and Beliefs of the Highlands and Islands


The core module is:

Highlands and Islands Voices

You will also choose two option modules which may include:

The North Atlantic World
Early Scottish and Norse Literature
The Orkney and Shetland Tongues
Orkney and Shetland Literature
Introduction to Screenwriting
Exploring Creative Writing
Celts and Vikings in the North Atlantic
Picts: Revealing the painted past


To achieve the award of MLitt Highlands and Islands Culture you must complete a research dissertation.


This course is available at:
Orkney College UHI, East Road, Kirkwall, KW15 1LX
Lews Castle College UHI, Stornoway, Isle of Lewis, HS2 0XR

Study Options

You will study this course through a combination of video conferenced seminars and learning via the university's virtual learning environment (VLE), with support from your tutors and student advisor.
International students requiring a Tier 4 visa to study with us must be based at Orkney College UHI during their studies. International students undertaking the course from their home country can study online and by video conference, in real-time or recordings.
All other students can choose to study at Orkney College UHI or Lews Castle College UHI in Stornoway, or from their own location studying online and by video conference in real-time or recordings.
An online induction will be offered at the start of your course.

Access routes

Students can access the programme from a range of UHI undergraduate programmes including:

BA (Hons) Culture and Heritage
BA (Hons) Scottish History
BA (Hons) Scottish History and Archaeology
BA (Hons) Scottish History and Literature
BA (Hons) Social Sciences
BA (Hons) Literature
BA (Hons) Archaeology
And externally from humanities degrees generally


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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Our MMus programme is distinctive in its range of musicological, compositional and performance-based elements. Read more
Our MMus programme is distinctive in its range of musicological, compositional and performance-based elements.

You will benefit from the diversity of our research strengths, numerous ensemble performance opportunities and expertise in a range of musical fields, including contemporary music for the concert hall, popular music, film music, opera, acoustic, electronic and computer-generated music.


The Musicology pathway of the MMus Music programme is designed to accommodate a flexible approach that reflects staff research expertise, students’ own specialisations and the increasingly polyglot nature of the discipline.

Art and popular music are both catered for within the pathway, drawing on the expertise of staff across these areas.

You will take two compulsory research training modules followed by a combination of compulsory specialism-related modules and optional modules. You may then choose to undertake a dissertation of either 60 or 90 credits.

The programme provides ideal preparation for future research work at PhD level.


This programme is studied full-time over one academic year and part-time students must study at least two taught technical modules per academic year. The following modules are indicative, reflecting the information available at the time of publication. Please note that not all modules described are compulsory and may be subject to teaching availability and/or student demand.
-Research Training A
-Research Training B
-Readings in Musicology A
-Readings in Musicology B
-Case Studies A
-Case Studies B
-Studio Techniques
-Screen Music Studies
-Rock Track Poetics
-African American Music
-Historical Performance Practice
-English Music from Elgar to Britten
-Performance A
-Anglo Celtic Song Traditions
-Jazz Studies 2
-Opera Studies
-Baroque Fugue in Practice
-Musical Theatre


Potential applicants may make an appointment for an informal interview with the Programme Director if practicable. All applicants will be asked either to submit a sample of written work, a DVD of their performance, or samples of their compositional work, or to sit an audition depending on their chosen specialism.


Our work achieves wide international circulation, both through established scholarly channels and, distinctively, through broadcast media (such as BBC TV, Channel 4, BBC Radio 3 and Radio 4, and National Public Radio in the USA). School staff are much in demand for pre-concert talks at venues such as London’s South Bank and Barbican centres.

The research environment at Surrey is sustained by open discussion and debate, and through the regular airing of work-in- progress. Our work is strengthened by the ready input of our peers and research students at various stages allowing collective engagement to foster innovation.


The MMus (Musicology) programme aims to provide students with a high quality education in the wide range of theoretical perspectives on and methodological approaches to present day musical study.

It aims to provide students with the necessary skills, techniques and methodologies to work at an advanced level with a critical awareness of the discipline.

The programme aims to reflect current developments within the theory and practice of musicology and, in so doing, to educate students so that they may work confidently and constructively within the musicological culture of the present. The programme aims to offer the necessary preparation for students wishing to undertake doctoral level study in practice-based areas.


The programme provides opportunities for students to develop and demonstrate knowledge and understanding, skills, qualities and other attributes in the following areas:

Knowledge and understanding
-Key questions in contemporary musicology
-Disciplinary overlaps in musicology
-The broad range of approaches to present day musicology

Intellectual / cognitive skills
-Frame research questions
-Critically assess, respond to and operate in current areas of musicology
-Understand what constitutes musicological evidence
-Undertake an advanced research project to an appropriate depth

Professional practical skills
-Writing and delivering conference papers
-Summarising musicological arguments and debates
-Choosing appropriate methodologies
-Accessing appropriate resources
-Communicating understanding clearly in writing
-Structuring a large scale piece of written work

Key / transferable skills
-Communicate and present ideas effectively
-Reason critically
-Organise and plan own work
-Adopt a proactive approach to problem-solving
-Make decisions in complex situations


We often give our students the opportunity to acquire international experience during their degrees by taking advantage of our exchange agreements with overseas universities.

In addition to the hugely enjoyable and satisfying experience, time spent abroad adds a distinctive element to your CV.

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With one of the largest postgraduate communities in the UK (typically around 50-60 research students and over 20 Masters students each year), we have established ourselves as one of the country's premier institutions for postgraduate education in Music. Read more
With one of the largest postgraduate communities in the UK (typically around 50-60 research students and over 20 Masters students each year), we have established ourselves as one of the country's premier institutions for postgraduate education in Music. Our research profile is of international standing and is reflected in our commitment to excellence in all aspects of our postgraduate provision.

The MMus in Advanced Musical Studies is designed to meet the needs of those who wish to specialise in one particular area of advanced musical study, as well as those who want to take a more varied set of options.

The aim of the course is to develop your intellectual and creative abilities within the field of advanced musical study to a professional level. You will be well versed and well practised in your chosen discipline, fluent both verbally and technically, and able to present your ideas within coherent frameworks orally, in writing, and through performance and composition. You will be able to take the initiative in constructing your study programme and will be fully conversant with a broad range of issues of concern in current musical and musicological endeavour.

See the website https://www.royalholloway.ac.uk/music/coursefinder/mmusadvancedmusicalstudies.aspx

Why choose this course?

- Our nationally and internationally-renowned Music Department is one of the UK's largest.

- Our teaching at postgraduate level has been consistently at the forefront of the discipline and we were the top-rated department in the UK in the 2008 Research Assessment Exercise (RAE).

- You will benefit from in-house research training, provided by our world-class academics and also from training programmes available at the Institute of Musical Research.

- You will have various opportunities for performance, incluing the Symphony Orchestra which presents an annual concert at St John's, Smith Square in London, the Chamber Orchestra, the Sinfonietta (for new music) an Andean Band, and a Gamelan Orchestra (Gamelan Puloganti).

Department research and industry highlights

Recent externally funded research includes:
- AHRC Research Centre for Musical Performance as Creative Practice (CMPCP)

- ‘Beyond Paris: music in regional France from the July Monarchy to the First World War’

- ‘El Sistema: music as social action in Venezuela’

- ‘Film fitting in Britain 1913–1926’

- ‘Medieval Song Network’

- ‘Modernism’s Quilting Points: Heidegger, Žižek, Walton’

- ‘Music in the Balkans’

Course content and structure

You will take a core course plus five elective courses in the first two terms before concentrating on your Special Study in the third term. The Special Study may be a Composition Portfolio (up to two pieces with a total performance time of 18-20 minutes), a Dissertation (12,000-15,000 words) or a Recital (lasting no more than 60 minutes). The core course and each elective count for 12.5% of the MMus degree, while the Special Study is worth 25%.

On completion of the course graduates will have:

- a critical understanding of the nature of professional musical, musicological and/or compositional activity at the highest national and international levels

- familiarity with the most important and sophisticated issues, techniques and literature relevant to the chosen area of musical enquiry/expertise

- an awareness of and ability to critically engage with new thinking in music, musicology and/or compositional practice

- a critical understanding of the complex linkages between the many aspects of a period, problem or theme

- enhanced understanding of the contingency of musical assumptions and judgements

- an advanced knowledge of a variety of critical and new technology approaches applicable to the specific field.


Assessment is carried out by a variety of methods including coursework, recital, portfolios, and a dissertation as applicable.

Employability & career opportunities

Our graduates are highly employable and, in recent years, have entered many different music-related areas, including careers as music teachers. composers and musicians. This course also equips you with a solid foundation for continued PhD studies.

How to apply

Applications for entry to all our full-time postgraduate degrees can be made online - https://www.royalholloway.ac.uk/studyhere/postgraduate/applying/howtoapply.aspx .

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The Department of Music offers graduate studies leading to the master of music degree. Students may specialize in composition, music history or performance (instrumental, vocal, opera, conducting). Read more
The Department of Music offers graduate studies leading to the master of music degree. Students may specialize in composition, music history or performance (instrumental, vocal, opera, conducting).

The graduate music program is small, and students receive personal attention from faculty, as well as quality performance opportunities.

Our opera program boasts a professional affiliation with the Tri-Cities Opera (TCO). Opera students are members of the TCO Resident Artist Training Program, where they gain professional experience while completing their studies. Our graduates have gone on to perform in major opera houses around the world.

Graduate Degrees Offered

*MM with track in Opera (associated with the Tri-Cities Opera Company)
* MM with emphasis in one of the following:
- Composition
- Conducting
- History and Literature
- Instrumental performance
- Vocal performance

All applicants must submit the following:

- Online graduate degree application and application fee
- Transcripts from each college/university you have attended
- Two letters of recommendation
- Personal statement (2-3 pages) describing your reasons for pursuing graduate study, your career aspirations, your special interests within your field, and any unusual features of your background that might need explanation or be of interest to your program's admissions committee.
- Resume or Curriculum Vitae detailing educational and professional experience
- The GRE is only required for applicants pursuing Music History and Literature emphasis.
- A live audition/interview is also required. For international applicants, the department will consider online audition/interviews via SKYPE or similar technology (contact the graduate director for details).

And, for international applicants:
- International Student Financial Statement form
- Official bank statement/proof of support
- Official TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE Academic scores

Depending on your desired track or emphasis, you must also submit the following:
- Composition applicants:
*Minimum of two manuscripts and/or recordings of compositions, preferably for differing performing genres. Electronic scores prepared with Finale or Sibelius preferred; hard copies accepted
*Recorded sample of compositions (if possible); live performance recordings preferred

- Conducting applicants:
*Preliminary screening DVD of rehearsal and/or performance conducting an instrumental or vocal ensemble (10-30 minutes)
*A (recent) recording sample, highlighting either:
*the candidate's major instrument
*voice; including a minimum of two composition(s) in contrasting styles

- History and Literature applicants:
*Minimum one writing sample (a research paper in music); two (or more) desirable

- Instrumental Performance applicants:
*Preliminary screening CD or DVD, including a minimum of two compositions in contrasting styles

- Opera and Vocal Performance applicants:
*Preliminary screening CD or DVD, including a minimum of four compositions in contrasting styles (one each in English, French, German and Italian)
*Opera/oratorio and song literature should be included

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We’re recognised as one of the leading institutions in the country for teacher training. Enjoying a strong national and international reputation, we have a long and distinguished record of training teachers dating back to 1839. Read more
We’re recognised as one of the leading institutions in the country for teacher training. Enjoying a strong national and international reputation, we have a long and distinguished record of training teachers dating back to 1839. Our PGCE Secondary programme, with recommendation for Qualified Teacher Status (QTS), offers high-quality training for those wishing to teach in the secondary age range.

The Modern Foreign Languages route is designed to equip students to teach National Curriculum MFL across Key Stages 3 and 4 and to A Level.

Visit the website: http://www.chi.ac.uk/pgce-secondary-modern-foreign-languages

Course detail

Students appreciate the creative and modern approach to language teaching provided by the Modern Languages course. Content includes thorough coverage of National Curriculum and assessment requirements combined with a focus on creativity in lesson planning and delivery.

Students will develop their understanding of how children acquire additional languages and how to best support their learning in listening, speaking, reading and writing. Particular attention is paid to the effective teaching of grammar to young learners and to the development of independent learners.

Students will develop a range of strategies to motivate young learners effectively, including through the use of song, drama and ICT. As part of the course students spend some time observing in Key Stage 2 and benefit from joint training with students on the Primary PGCE MFL specialism. There are opportunities for students to continue to improve their second foreign language.

Sessions are delivered at the Bognor Regis campus but also include a number of off-site visits to local partnership schools; there are also opportunities to benefit from the expertise of visiting speakers.

Our course includes a well-respected summer conference to which prospective, current and past students are invited along with local teachers, and which provides the opportunity to hear a number of national speakers present on a variety of engaging and thought-provoking topics.

The Modern Foreign Languages modules are complemented by a Professional Studies programme, which is also based at Bognor Regis. There is also the option to gain some experience at Key Stage 2. The subject specific element of the course is delivered at our Bognor Regis Campus.

Format and assessment

In addition to your subject specialism, you’ll study a Professional Studies element of the course, which includes:

- Professionalism in Education
- Identity, Equality and Inclusion
- Closing the gap in access and achievement
- Reflective practice
- Positive behaviour management
- Working with learning support assistants
- English as an additional language
- Child protection and Prevent
- Pastoral care in schools
- Literacy and numeracy across the curriculum
- Research skills
- The relationship between theory and practice
- Special Educational Needs
- Vocal skills
- Applying for teaching posts
- Personal, Social and Health Education
- Building rapport and resilience

The course is assessed through observation during teaching placements and written assignments.

Career prospects

This programme prepares you for a career as a secondary school teacher. At the end of the year you will be recommended for Qualified Teacher Status and will be ready for the next stage of your development as a Newly Qualified Teacher in school. Our students are highly successful in gaining teaching posts, many in our partner schools.

How to apply:


Funding for postgraduate students:

For information on funding and scholarships, please visit: http://www.chi.ac.uk/study-us/fees-finance/funding-and-money-advice-0/funding-postgraduate-students

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The course will develop a broad-based understanding of how Ethnology and Folklore evolved, and of their approaches to the major genres of study. Read more
The course will develop a broad-based understanding of how Ethnology and Folklore evolved, and of their approaches to the major genres of study: material culture, custom and belief, oral narrative, song, childlore and games, sports and pastimes.

First Semester
History and Core Genes of Ethnology and Folklore
Intellectual Backgrounds and Methodologies

Second Semester
Oral Traditions
Scottish Context and Practical Field Work

Third Semester
Dissertation in Ethnology and Folklore

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