Course information

Entry requirements

UCAS code

W302

Entry requirements

A-level: BBB
BTEC: DDM
IB: 33 points overall with Three HL subjects at 655

Length

3 years full-time, or up to 6 years part-time

Department

Music

Course overview

This degree reflects the diversity and excitement of music in the 21st century, taking in everything from classical music to contemporary jazz and electronic practices, and gives you the opportunity to mix performance, composition and research.

Why study BMus Music at Goldsmiths

  • In the first year you’ll explore different musical styles and approaches to study - through a range of compulsory practical and critical modules

  • Later, you'll be able to choose from our wide range of jazz, sonic art, popular and fringe music modules as well as our practical, skills-based workshop and teaching modules

  • You’ll have lots of opportunities to perform, including in professional and student-led ensembles and groups such as Gamelan Ensemble, Sinfonia and Creative Jazz Ensemble, and at our annual music festival PureGold, which celebrates the music created and performed at Goldsmiths.

  • We're within easy reach of central London’s many venues, concert halls, opera houses and research libraries, providing a great international focus

  • You’ll be very well set-up for the world of work. Employers look for initiative-driven graduates who think critically about their actions, work well with others and adapt quickly to new ideas. This degree will help you develop these skills.

  • We attract instrumental and vocal teachers of the highest quality, with many of our staff also teaching at the major music conservatoires. Our performance modules are supplemented with ensemble classes and masterclasses given by top professional musicians. First-year BMus Music students are currently entitled to 12 hours of one-to-one tuition per year.

Contact the department

If you have specific questions about the degree, contact Corey Mwamba.

What you'll study

Year 1 (credit level 4)

All BMus Music students take the following modules:

Module title Credits
Discovering Music 30 credits
Performance: Techniques and Repertoire 30 credits
Composition 30 credits
Materials, Signs and Symbols 15 credits
Critical Approaches to Contemporary Music 15 credits

Year 2 (credit level 5)

In your second year, you'll take at least one and up to three of the following compulsory modules:

Module title Credits
Sounding the 19th Century 15 credits
Aesthetics, Meaning and Culture 15 credits
Music and Identity 15 credits

You'll then use your remaining credits (up to 105 depending on your compulsory modules choices) to select from the below list of optional modules:

Module title Credits
Performance: Styles and Contexts 30 credits
Techniques of Contemporary Composition 15 credits
Composition: Creative Strategies 15 credits
Electroacoustic Composition 15 credits
Making Experimental Sound 15 credits
Techniques in Jazz and Popular Music 15 credits
Arranging and Composing for the Jazz Ensemble 15 credits
Contemporary Jazz Performance the UK Scene 15 credits
Media Composition 15 credits
Music/Modernities 15 credits
Soviet Music and Politics 15 credits
Music Practice and the Black Atlantic: Britain’s Celebrity Culture 15 credits
Music in Film 15 credits
What is Jazz? 15 credits
Sound as Art 15 Credits
Musics of East Asia: Politics, Industry, Creativity 15 credits
Music of Africa and Asia 15 credits
Pitching Creative Businesses: Models, Markets and Meaning 15 credits
Goldsmiths’ Social Change Module 15 credits
The Goldsmiths Elective 15 credits

Year 3 (credit level 6)

In your final year, you'll take at least one, and up to two of the following compulsory modules:

Module title Credits
Performance: Creative Practice 15 credits
Composition portfolio 30 credits
Research Project 30 credits

 

You'll then use your remaining credits (up to 90 depending on your compulsory modules selection) to choose from the following optional modules:

Module title Credits
Contemporary Jazz Performance the UK Scene 15 credits
Acoustic Ecology and Field Recording 15 credits
Performing South-East Asian Music 15 credits
Improvisation 15 credits
Creative Orchestration and Arrangement 15 credits
Introduction to Audiovisual Composition 15 credits
Music/Modernities 15 credits
Soviet Music and Politics 15 credits
Music Practice and the Black Atlantic: Britain’s Celebrity Culture 15 credits
Music and Screen Media 15 credits
Advanced Popular Music Studies 15 credits
Fringe and Underground Musics 15 credits
Music in Educational, Community and Therapeutic Contexts 15 Credits
Music Workshop Skills 15 credits
Music Teaching Skills 15 credits
DIY Practice and Alternative Sites for Music 15 credits
Live Electronics 15 credits
Work placement 15 credits
You as Your Future: Developing Creative Careers 15 Credits
Psychological Approaches to Music 15 credits

Teaching style

This programme is taught through a mixture of scheduled teaching, including seminars, one-to-one tutorials and performance lessons, practical workshops and music studio sessions. You’ll also be expected to undertake a significant amount of independent study. This includes carrying out required and additional reading, preparing topics for discussion, and producing essays or project work.

The following information gives an indication of the typical proportions of learning and teaching for each year of this programme*:

  • Year 1 - 13% scheduled learning, 87% independent learning
  • Year 2 - 11% scheduled learning, 89% independent learning
  • Year 3 - 12% scheduled learning, 88% independent learning

How you’ll be assessed

You’ll be assessed by a variety of methods, depending on your module choices. These include coursework, examinations, group work, solo recitals, improvisation and group performances.

The following information gives an indication of how you can typically expect to be assessed on each year of this programme*:

  • Year 1 - 68% coursework, 13% written exam, 20% practical
  • Year 2 - 81% coursework, 19% practical
  • Year 3 - 78% coursework, 23% practical

*Please note that these are averages are based on enrolments for 2020/21. Each student’s time in teaching, learning and assessment activities will differ based on individual module choices. Percentages can equal up to anywhere between 99% and 101%, this is due to the numerical rounding process. Find out more about how this information is calculated.

Credits and levels of learning

An undergraduate honours degree is made up of 360 credits – 120 at Level 4, 120 at Level 5 and 120 at Level 6. If you are a full-time student, you will usually take Level 4 modules in the first year, Level 5 in the second, and Level 6 modules in your final year. A standard module is worth 30 credits. Some programmes also contain 15-credit half modules or can be made up of higher-value parts, such as a dissertation or a Major Project.

Download the programme specification. If you would like an earlier version of the programme specification, please contact the Quality Office.

Please note that due to staff research commitments not all of these modules may be available every year.

For 2021-22 and 2020–21, we have made some changes to how the teaching and assessment of certain programmes are delivered. To check what changes affect this programme, please visit the programme changes page.

Entry requirements

We accept the following qualifications:

A-level: BBB
BTEC: DDM
International Baccalaureate: 33 points overall with Three HL subjects at 655
Access: Pass with 45 Level 3 credits including 30 Distinctions and a number of merits/passes in subject-specific modules
Scottish qualifications: BBBBC (Higher) or BBC (Advanced Higher)
European Baccalaureate: 75%
Irish Leaving Certificate: H2 H2 H2 H2

Additional requirements

You should have an A-level or BTEC in Music, experience of music performance (evidenced by graded examinations from any exam board or a video of yourself performing), and the ability to read and write musical notation equivalent to ABRSM grade 5 (this can be evidenced by an exam certificate or by your notated work in composition or music theory).

Exceptions

Other academic qualifications are accepted if you can demonstrate other strengths. For example, if you have no formal performance grades, but can nevertheless demonstrate substantial experience in music performance or composition, we will still be able to consider your application.

International qualifications

We also accept a wide range of international qualifications. Find out more about the qualifications we accept from around the world.

If English isn’t your first language, you will need an IELTS score (or equivalent English language qualification) of 6.0 with a 6.0 in writing and no element lower than 5.5 to study this programme. If you need assistance with your English language, we offer a range of courses that can help prepare you for degree-level study.

Selection process

Candidates who have evidenced their academic, performance, and music theory qualifications in their UCAS applications may be made an offer at application stage. We may also invite you to submit further evidence of your musical skills and abilities via a portfolio of work. We may also invite you to a short interview with a member of the music department. We're looking for students who have the right blend of practical, creative and critical skills.

All offer holders will also be invited to an applicant day. This allows us to meet potential students and find out more about their interests and abilities.

Fees & funding

Annual tuition fees

These are the fees for students starting their programme in the 2023/2024 academic year.

From August 2021 EU/EEA/Swiss nationals will no longer be eligible for 'Home' fee status. EU/EEA/Swiss nationals will be classified as 'International' for fee purposes, more information can be found on our fees page.

  • Home - full-time: £9250
  • Home - part-time: £4625
  • International - full-time: £18930

If your fees are not listed here, please check our undergraduate fees guidance or contact the Fees Office, who can also advise you about how to pay your fees.

It’s not currently possible for international students to study part-time under a student visa. If you think you might be eligible to study part-time while being on another visa type, please contact our Admissions Team for more information.

If you are looking to pay your fees please see our guide to making a payment.

Additional costs

In addition to your tuition fees, you'll be responsible for any additional costs associated with your course, such as buying stationery and paying for photocopying. You can find out more about what you need to budget for on our study costs page.

There may also be specific additional costs associated with your programme. This can include things like paying for field trips or specialist materials for your assignments. Please check the programme specification for more information.

Funding opportunities

Joe Brown Memorial Award
Second-year students are eligible to apply for an award of £1,000 towards final-year Creative Projects with an electronic component.

Music Performance Scholarship
BMus Music students are eligible for our Music Performance Scholarship worth £9,000.

We offer a wide range of scholarships and bursaries, and our careers service can also offer advice on finding work during your studies. Find out more about funding your studies with us.

Careers

What skills will I gain from a Music degree?

Graduates also develop specific musical skills including:

  • performance
  • composition
  • use of music technology
  • knowledge of a range of historical, contemporary, popular and world styles of music, and the debates and practices surrounding them
  • critical listening and score analysis

You'll develop a wide range of key skills through both the practical and academic content of their degree, including:

  • communication (including public speaking, developing and presenting an argument, note taking, report writing)
  • analytical thinking
  • awareness of social, political and cultural processes
  • awareness of social and cultural difference
  • ability to take creative approaches
  • attention to detail
  • team work and collaborative practice
  • the ability to undertake detailed research

Many of our graduates choose careers in fields related to their musical knowledge, such as:

  • Teaching
  • Performing
  • Arts administration
  • Music librarianship
  • Publishing and retailing
  • Record companies and production
  • Technical work in radio or television

Statistically, music graduates demonstrate very good employment rates, because they are often highly trained in the kinds of transferable skills employers are seeking, such as individual motivation, team working and effective communication.

Find out more about employability at Goldsmiths