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Music as a creative art form in the 21st century can combine both tradition and innovation, bringing together instruments (some new, some with centuries of history) and the latest in high technology.

As a composer today, all of these resources are available to you, and the Mixed Composition pathway aims to foster your skills as you navigate this exciting new world. By studying this pathway you can create works which combine electroacoustics and computer technology with more traditional instrumental and vocal composition, or explore each of those elements separately. Works for interactive systems, multimedia, and sound installations are also welcome.

Course details

You will study one core module:

  • Composition Tutorials

You will also choose three optional modules. This must include at least one of:

  • Advanced Studies in Electroacoustic Composition
  • Advanced Studies in Instrumental/Vocal Composition

Your remaining optional module(s) will be chosen from a range which typically includes:

  • Aesthetics and the Philosophy of Art
  • Contemporary Music Studies
  • Laptop Ensemble
  • Music, Place and Identity
  • Sound in Society
  • Special Study in Music

Full descriptions are available below.

Assessment

Modules are assessed by a combination of practical and written assignments. You will also produce a composition portfolio of new musical works.

Learning and teaching

Your learning will be enhanced by our extensive facilities, including the Bramall Music Buildingand the Electroacoustic Music Studios and Birmingham ElectroAcoustic Sound Theatre (BEAST).

Support with academic writing

As a postgraduate student in the College of Arts and Law, you have access to the Academic Writing Advisory Service (AWAS) which aims to help your transition from undergraduate to taught Masters level, or back into academia after time away. The service offers guidance on writing assignments and dissertations for your MA/MSc programme with individual support from an academic writing advisor via tutorials, email and the provision of online materials.

International students can access support for English Language development and skills through the Birmingham International Academy (BIA).

Employability

Your degree will provide excellent preparation for employment and this will be further enhanced by a range of employability support services offered by the University.

The University's Careers Network provides advice and information specifically for postgraduates that will help you to develop an effective career and skills development strategy, and to make the most of your time with us at the University. The College of Arts and Law also has a dedicated careers and employability team to deliver tailored programmes of careers events and local support.

You will have opportunities to: meet employers face-to-face at on-campus recruitment fairs; attend employer presentations and skills workshops; receive individual guidance on your job applications, writing your CV and improving your interview technique; and access to comprehensive listings of hundreds of graduate jobs and work experience opportunities.

You will also be able to access our full range of careers support for up to two years after graduation.

Postgraduate employability: Music

Birmingham's Music postgraduates work in a wide range of careers within and beyond the music world. A postgraduate degree in Music develops a broad base of skills including general skills such as communication, problem solving and research, and also specific skills developed by practice and performance such as self-management, team work and presentation.

Over the past four years, 91% of Music postgraduates were in work and/or further study six months after graduation. Whilst some graduates pursue music-related careers, or go on to teaching and lecturing roles, others choose to use their transferable skills to follow career paths in fields including finance and the public sector.


Visit the Music: Mixed Composition pathway - MA page on the University of Birmingham website for more details!

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Recipient: University of Birmingham

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