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Undergraduate Programme Specification

BA Music and Sound Design

Academic Year 2021/22

A programme specification is required for any programme on which a student may be registered. All programmes of the University are subject to the University's Quality Assurance processes. All degrees are awarded by Queen's University Belfast.

Programme Title BA Music and Sound Design Final Award
(exit route if applicable for Postgraduate Taught Programmes)
Bachelor of Arts
Programme Code MUS-BA-MSD UCAS Code W371 HECoS Code 100221 - Music technology - 50
100842 - Film music and screen music - 50
ATAS Clearance Required No
Mode of Study Full Time
Type of Programme Single Honours Length of Programme 3 Academic Year(s) Total Credits for Programme 360
Exit Awards available

Institute Information

Teaching Institution

Queen's University Belfast

School/Department

Arts, English and Languages

Quality Code
https://www.qaa.ac.uk/quality-code

Higher Education Credit Framework for England
https://www.qaa.ac.uk/quality-code/higher-education-credit-framework-for-england

Level 6

Subject Benchmark Statements
https://www.qaa.ac.uk/quality-code/subject-benchmark-statements

The Frameworks for Higher Education Qualifications of UK Degree-Awarding Bodies
https://www.qaa.ac.uk/docs/qaa/quality-code/qualifications-frameworks.pdf

Music (2008)

Accreditations (PSRB)

Regulation Information

Does the Programme have any approved exemptions from the University General Regulations
(Please see General Regulations)

None

Programme Specific Regulations

Some flexibility for students to take modules outside of this Programme is possible and will be decided on an individual basis. When permissible the following applies:
At Stage 1 a student may substitute up to 20 CATS of optional modules with the equivalent number of CATS from a list of approved modules beyond those listed.
At Stage 2 a student may substitute up to 20 CATS of optional modules with the equivalent number of CATS from a list of approved modules beyond those listed.

Students will be notified each academic year of the optional modules being offered in the following academic year. Students are advised that not all optional modules will necessarily be offered in each academic year. Also, the delivery of a module may be subject to a minimum number of enrolments as well as unforeseen circumstances (eg illness of a member of staff). The range and content of optional modules will change over time as degree programmes develop and students' choice of optional modules may also be limited due to timetabling constraints.

Students with protected characteristics

N/A

Are students subject to Fitness to Practise Regulations

(Please see General Regulations)

No

Educational Aims Of Programme

In accordance with Queen's University's Mission Statement, the new BA Music and Sound Design aspires to be a broadly-based, practice-driven programme designed to appeal to musicians interested in composing music and designing sound for a wide range of contexts but with particular emphasis on film and theatre. Its unique educational benefits come from strong partnerships with the BBC, Ulster Orchestra, Opera NI, Hard Rain SoloistEnsemble, Cathedral Quarter Arts Festival, Moving on Music, Diatribe Records, DTS and Dolby - the Dolby Atmos immersive sound system is installed in SARC's Sonic Lab, the only such available system in a UK HE institution. The BA Music and Sound Design programme will be taught, predominantly, at one of the UK's largest and best-equipped centres in the field of music and sound, the Sonic Arts Research Centre (SARC). Students can expect to obtain the highest standard of instruction from staff with expertise in the fields of music and sonic arts. Within this context, the programme aims to provide students with:

The necessary skills, tools and techniques needed to embark on careers as sound and music designers/composers or undertake research and teaching in music and the sonic arts

Knowledge and understanding of the fundamental principles of sound production, propagation and manipulation

The ability to creatively harness audio technology for the purposes of composing, designing, synthesising, processing and projecting music and audio

Knowledge and understanding of a range of current and emerging developments in the practice of sound design and composition for a range of new media

A broad experience of musical repertoires, their performances and their cultural contexts

The skills and techniques needed to realise highly individualized musical expression and imagination in practical music-making

Awareness and practical experience of the wider commercial environment in which sound designers and composers operate

Exposure to a variety of learning methods and acquisition of advanced critical, analytical and physical skills

An enriched learning experience through regular interdisciplinary collaborations with specifically selected industry partners

High levels of professionalism and the adoption of professional standards: punctuality; reliability; commitment and self-discipline

Strong interpersonal skills, encompassing team-working skills and effective oral, written, presentation and listening skills

The values, attitudes and competencies needed to undertake CPD and self-directed learning throughout their careers

Learning Outcomes

Learning Outcomes: Cognitive Skills

On the completion of this course successful students will be able to:

Demonstrate intellectual curiosity and the potential for continuing artistic and creative development, leadership and innovation.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Developed throughout the programme in lectures, class group-work, seminars, tutorials, workshops, concert attendance. Interpretation and analysis of ideas generated through class discussion and group exercises.

Methods of Assessment

Written examinations, oral examinations, listening tests, essays, projects, learning journals, seminar presentations, concert reviews, book reviews, textual editing, podcasts.

Engage with and evaluate a variety of sources (texts, notated scores, recorded and live performances).

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Developed throughout the programme in lectures, class group-work, seminars, tutorials, workshops, concert attendance. Interpretation and analysis of ideas generated through class discussion and group exercises.

Methods of Assessment

Written examinations, oral examinations, listening tests, essays, projects, learning journals, seminar presentations, concert reviews, book reviews, textual editing, podcasts.

Understand complex issues and arguments and communicate this understanding both orally and in written form.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Developed throughout the programme in lectures, class group-work, seminars, tutorials, workshops.
Current theory is referenced and commented on through both oral and written work.

Methods of Assessment

Written examinations, oral examinations, listening tests, essays, projects, learning journals, seminar presentations, concert reviews, book reviews, textual editing, podcasts.

Contextualise music and its history form a variety of perspectives and contexts.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Developed throughout the programme in lectures, class group-work, seminars, tutorials, workshops.
Independent views are formed on a range of sources (notated, written, performed, recorded) and the effective expression of these views is encouraged through discussion and written work.

Methods of Assessment

Written examinations, oral examinations, listening tests, essays, projects, learning journals, seminar presentations, concert reviews, book reviews, textual editing, podcasts.

Learning Outcomes: Knowledge & Understanding

On the completion of this course successful students will be able to:

Demonstrate a broad knowledge of the history of different types of music styles

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Taught throughout the programme in lectures, tutorials, seminars, platform classes.
These sessions provide a springboard for further enquiry carried out through group work, individual tutorials and feedback sessions, independent study, and concerts by visiting performers and music producers.

Methods of Assessment

Written examinations, essay, learning journals, class presentations, concert reviews.

Understand a wide range of musical histories and of their political, aesthetic, social and cultural contexts.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Taught throughout the programme in lectures, tutorials, seminars, platform classes.
These sessions provide a springboard for further enquiry carried out through group work, individual tutorials and feedback sessions, independent study, and concerts by visiting performers and music producers.

Methods of Assessment

Written examinations, essays, learning journals, class presentations and discussions, concert reviews.

Understand the fundamental properties of sound, the nature of sound propagation, and the methods of representing/synthesising sound.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Taught throughout the programme in lectures, tutorials, seminars, workshops.
Classroom instruction is augmented by the use of video instruction.

Methods of Assessment

Written examinations, coursework assignments, practical projects, class presentations.

Demonstrate knowledge of the loudspeaker configuration formats used for the spatial reproduction of audio for film and music.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Taught at Stage 3 in lectures, tutorials, seminars, workshops.
Specialist facilities such as the Sonic Lab allow for delivery of highly illustrative practical examples.

Methods of Assessment

Written examinations, coursework assignments.

Understand the operational principles of electroacoustic transducers.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Taught throughout the programme in lectures, tutorials, seminars, workshops. Design theory is reinforced through the regular application of microphones and loudspeakers in most practical assignments.

Methods of Assessment

Written examinations, coursework assignments, laboratory experiments.

Learning Outcomes: Subject Specific

On the completion of this course successful students will be able to:

Demonstrate the ability to convey highly individualized musical expression and imagination in practical music-making through employing appropriate technical and interpretative means.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Taught throughout the programme in lectures, tutorials, workshops, performance platforms.
Tutor/peer review of work in progress are used extensively to develop practical composition and performance skills.

Methods of Assessment

Composition portfolios, solo recitals; ensemble recitals, improvisations.

Demonstrate the ability to interpret, augment and propel dramatic narrative through the design of sound or music for accompanying media, employing appropriate technical and interpretative means.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Taught at Stages 2 and 3 in lectures, tutorials, and workshops.
Interdisciplinary collaborations with Film/
drama students are fostered to provide a greater appreciation of the context of music/sound design in a typical production workflow.

Methods of Assessment

Coursework assignments, composition portfolios, continuous assessment.

Demonstrate the ability to collaborate and undertake leadership in music-making, through ensemble performance, co-creation, or improvisatory work.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Taught throughout the programme in lectures, tutorials, workshops, performance platforms.
Collaborative music making is a fundamental requirement of the ensemble performance modules.

Methods of Assessment

Composition portfolios, ensemble recitals, improvisations.

Demonstrate the ability to creatively utilise technology in practical music making activities such as composition, performance, improvisation

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Taught at Stages 2 and 3 in lecturers, tutorials, workshops, seminars, performance platforms.
Technical competence is established at Stage 1 to allow for confident, creative utilisation at Stages 2 and 3.

Methods of Assessment

Composition portfolios, solo recitals, ensemble recitals, improvisations, coursework assignments.

Demonstrate the ability to apply practical software, hardware and design skills to the construction of new musical instruments and interfaces.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Taught at Stages 2 and 3 in lecturers, labs and workshops.
The application of hardware and software skills in creative design is developed gradually through practical labs and problem solving exercises.

Methods of Assessment

Coursework assignments, project reports, solo recitals, ensemble recitals.

Demonstrate the ability to record music and/or speech to a broadcast standard using appropriate microphone selection and placement and to critically evaluate the microphone technique(s) employed.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Taught throughout the programme in lectures, tutorials, workshops and critical listening labs.
Provision of extensive audio examples and tutor/peer review of work in progress are used extensively to develop critical listening skills.

Methods of Assessment

Continuous assessment, coursework assignments, listening assessments, computer based assessments.

Demonstrate the ability to operate sound studio hardware and software (mixing consoles, digital audio workstations, outboard processors) to facilitate the editing, mixing and mastering of recorded music and/or speech and to critically evaluate the mixing technique(s) employed.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Taught throughout the programme in lectures, tutorials, workshops, practical labs. Small group tutorials, individual personal study in studio facilities, video instruction and tutor/peer review of work in progress are used extensively to develop practical audio engineering skills

Methods of Assessment

Continuous assessment, coursework assignments, practical examinations, listening assessments, computer based assessment.

Critically evaluate a variety of differently notated, improvised and performed music styles.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Taught throughout the programme in lectures, tutorials, seminars, concerts, performance platforms.

Methods of Assessment

Practical examinations, learning journals, concert reviews, class presentations, listening exercises, podcasts.

Demonstrate practical experience of developing work in the professional domain, including the production and online dissemination of AV media-based works and/or artistic documentation.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Taught at Stage 3 through individual and ensemble tutorials, performance classes. Complimented by independent inquiry into appropriate external venues, event promotion, and the design of external funding bids.

Methods of Assessment

Written and online documentation, screening/exhibition.

Learning Outcomes: Transferable Skills

On the completion of this course successful students will be able to:

Demonstrate the ability to produce high quality work independently, and to show self-motivation and critical self awareness.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Taught throughout the programme in lectures, tutorials, workshops, performance platforms.

Methods of Assessment

Coursework assignments, project reports, composition portfolios, solo recitals, ensemble recitals, improvisation.

Demonstrate the ability to work in combination with others on collaborative activities and to show teamwork, negotiation, organisation and decision making.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Taught throughout the programme in tutorials, workshops, performance platforms.

Methods of Assessment

Coursework assignments, project reports, composition portfolios, ensemble recitals, improvisations.

Demonstrate an awareness of different professional and cultural environments and an ability to adapt and respond creatively to the relevant environment.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Taught throughout the programme but particularly at Stage 3 within the core 'Professional Practice' module.

Methods of Assessment

Project reports, coursework assignments.

Demonstrate the ability to present work articulately in written and oral form, intelligible to both expert and non-expert audiences.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Taught throughout the programme in lectures, tutorials, workshops, performance platforms.

Methods of Assessment

Examinations, essays, class presentations, coursework assignments, project reports.

Demonstrate advanced knowledge of ICT and innovative approaches to the application of ICT skills.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Taught throughout the programme in lectures, tutorials, workshops, seminars, performance platforms.

Methods of Assessment

Coursework assignments, composition portfolios, solo recitals, ensemble recitals, improvisations.

Module Information

Stages and Modules

Module Title Module Code Level/ stage Credits

Availability

Duration Pre-requisite

Assessment

S1 S2 Core Option Coursework % Practical % Examination %
Sound Recording and Production 1 MUS1038 1 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 60% 40% 0%
Being Creative: Music Media and the Arts ESA1001 1 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Work-based Learning AEL3001 3 20 YES YES 24 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Bach and Mozart MUS3033 3 20 YES YES 24 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Special Project MUS3076 3 20 YES YES 24 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Composition II MUS2011 2 20 YES YES 24 weeks Y YES 100% 0% 0%
Classical Analysis MUS2015 2 20 YES 12 weeks Y YES 100% 0% 0%
Composition 1b (Sonic Arts) MUS1012 1 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Introduction to Music MUS1002 1 20 YES YES 24 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Professional Practice MUS3004 3 20 YES YES 24 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Songwriting MUS2055 2 20 YES YES 24 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Sonic Arts MUS2004 2 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 80% 20% 0%
Composing for Screen MUS3014 3 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Single Performance 3 MUS3072 3 20 YES YES 24 weeks Y YES 35% 65% 0%
Fame MUS2043 2 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 70% 30% 0%
Dissertation MUS3084 3 40 YES YES 24 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Immersive Media MUS3007 3 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Directed Study MUS3099 3 20 YES YES 24 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Interactive Sensing Systems MUS2013 2 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Film and Music: Theory and Criticism FLM3024 3 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Radio and Podcast Production BCP2002 2 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Gender, Culture, and Representation – Backwards & in Heels AEL2001 2 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 60% 40% 0%
Audio Mixing I MUS1030 1 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 70% 30% 0%
Sound Recording and Production 3 MUS3038 3 20 YES 12 weeks Y YES 100% 0% 0%
Interactive Media and Future Broadcasting BCP2005 2 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Politics in Popular Song from the French Revolution to Punk MUS3055 3 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Single Performance 2 MUS2017 2 20 YES YES 24 weeks Y YES 20% 80% 0%
Improvisation MUS2050 2 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 30% 70% 0%
Scoring and Arranging MUS2053 2 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 80% 0% 20%
Experimental Popular Musics MUS2033 2 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Adaptation as Interdisciplinary Practice AEL2002 2 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Film and Sound: History and Theory FLM2014 2 20 YES 12 weeks Y YES 100% 0% 0%
Double Performance 3 MUS3082 3 40 YES YES 24 weeks Y YES 20% 80% 0%
Introduction to Film Studies 1 FLM1001 1 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 40% 0% 60%
Traditional Irish Music: Form, Style and Development MUS3069 3 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 40% 10% 50%
Audio Programming MUS2080 2 20 YES 12 weeks Y YES 0% 100% 0%
Introduction to Composition MUS1005 1 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 50% 50% 0%
Music Psychology MUS2052 2 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Sonic Arts 2 MUS3003 3 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Sound Recording and Production 2 MUS2038 2 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Live Production Systems MUS2048 2 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Composition 1a (Acoustic Composition) MUS1011 1 20 YES 12 weeks Y YES 65% 0% 35%
Music in History MUS1041 1 20 YES YES 24 weeks Y YES 100% 0% 0%
Music and Identity in the Mediterranean ESA3012 3 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 40% 0% 60%
Radical Musics: Understanding Sounds of Defiance across Disciplines HAP2000 2 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Notation and Transcription MUS2066 2 20 YES 12 weeks Y YES 100% 0% 0%
Fundamental Harmony MUS1013 1 20 YES YES 24 weeks Y YES 100% 0% 0%
Single Performance 1 MUS1017 1 20 YES YES 24 weeks Y YES 20% 80% 0%
Instrument and Installation Design MUS2034 2 20 YES 12 weeks Y YES 100% 0% 0%
Sound Design for Screen MUS2036 2 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Orchestration MUS3020 3 20 YES 12 weeks Y YES 100% 0% 0%
The Politics of Performance: From Negotiation to Display ESA3002 3 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 90% 10% 0%
Fundamentals of Sound MUS1010 1 20 YES YES 24 weeks N YES 50% 0% 50%
Composition 3b MUS3012 3 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Composition 3a MUS3011 3 20 YES 12 weeks Y YES 100% 0% 0%
Music and Medicine MUS3008 3 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Auditory Perception MUS3010 3 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%

Notes

Stage 1 Students must take 120 CATS. Necessary pre requisites: MUS1011 - pre-requisite is GCSE Music or Grade 6 Theory MUS1013 - pre-requisite is entrance test MUS1017 - pre-requisite is successful audition MUS1041 - pre-requisite is GCSE Music or Grade 6 Theory

Stage 2 Students must take 120 CATS. Students are not allowed to enrol on more than two non MUS modules. Necessary pre-requisites: MUS2011 - pre-requisite is MUS1011 MUS2015 - pre-requisite is MUS1013 MUS2017 - pre-requisite is MUS1017 or audition MUS2034 - pre-requisite is MUS2013 MUS2066 - pre-requisite is A-Level Music Grade C or Grade 8 Theory MUS2080 - pre-requisite is ELE1053 or equivalent computer programming experience FLM2014 - pre-requisite is FLM1001

Stage 3 Students must take 120 CATS points. Necessary pre requisites: MUS3011 - pre-requisite is 58% or above in MUS2011 MUS3012 - pre-requisite is 58% or above in MUS3011 MUS3020 - pre-requisite is MUS2053 MUS3038 - pre-requisite is MUS2038 MUS3072 - pre-requisite is 60% in MUS2017 or MUS2018 or successful audition MUS3082 - pre-requisite is 64% in MUS2017 or MUS2018 or successful audition