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Music Technology Foundation Degree – C0044

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Course Overview

The two-year foundation degree in music technology, in association with De Montfort University, is an industry-facing programme that offers a wide range of relevant music technology themes and subjects. Graduates will have a strong scientific understanding of acoustics and various audio technology applications required by this dynamic sector. Vital industry skill sets will be developed via the unique work-based learning aspect of the programme, reinforcing individual subject specialisms in commercial environments such as live sound, studio recording, music production and programming.

Combining creativity and technology, the programme offers access to modern recording studios, production suites and live music venues. Leicester College is an Apple Pro Training Centre, a Roland Academy, and an Ableton Certified Training Centre. Graduates of the programme can study for a further year at De Montfort University to achieve a full honours degree in music technology following on from this course.

What You'll Learn

Year 1

This modular course will develop your expertise in recording technology, composition, acoustics, electronics, live sound, multimedia, and sound manipulation via a range of industry-standard projects and academic work. You will also work closely with related discipline areas such as dance, acting, performing musician and media in a range of projects that promote professional development as well as subject specialisms.

You will use some of the best professional grade equipment in the Midlands, learn relevant work skills, get taught by industry active professionals, and experience specialist guest lecturers.

Modules:
Essential Business Skills: This module looks at the business and industry requirements placed on the modern music maker to harness their skills and focus them to positively impact their career. The business associated with the music industry and its components rely heavily on individual skills; music makers need to be aware that their own skills in this area are the major driving force behind their success.

Sound Creation Manipulation: This module explores different music software types and the set-up of a modern Digital Audio Workstation (DAW). This module also explores the theoretical and practical issues of recording and gives students a contextual grounding and experience in the historical development of electronic music. The development of technology dependent compositional techniques will be practically and theoretically studied.

Programming: This module explores software design in a practical context. Students will learn how to use object-based programming environments to develop a range of music applications related to music production and performance.

Introduction to Audio Recording: The aim of this module is to develop knowledge and understanding of the processes and techniques of audio recording and production. Students will work in modern recording studios and investigate the factors affecting sound quality in the recording process. Students will learn how to use digital recording systems such as mixing consoles and patch bays and will develop a practical and theoretical knowledge of the production chain investigating theoretical and practical principles of digital formats, multi-track recording and audio mastering.

Audio Electronics: This module develops an understanding of how basic electronic circuits work, practical skills in soldering connectors and building simple circuits, and practical experience of the use of test equipment. Students will develop a logical approach to understanding and testing the types of circuits commonly encountered in the music production industry

Acoustics: This module consolidates a basic knowledge of the physics of sound and applies this qualitatively and quantitatively to environments where music and sound systems are performed, recorded and configured. Acoustic environments are analysed and evaluated, and the basic physiologies of hearing and sound perception are also explored.

Creative Live Technology: This module is designed to enable students to develop knowledge of performance arts and its associated systems and techniques. Students will work in a commercial/public facing venue in the city centre to build their knowledge and develop technical skills through a range of related disciplines. The module will introduce students to sound design in the performing arts and artistic benefits of appropriate mood generation.

Year 2

The focus in year two is on higher-level skills with the emphasis on more independent study, as well as introducing specific modules in multimedia/Foley and research. You will also have a dedicated module in Live Sound for bands, delivered in our city centre venue.

Modules:
Live Sound: Students will work in a commercial music venue analysing the environment, procedures, equipment and techniques involved in the rigging and engineering of live music in venue environments. Through appraisal and practice, it investigates a range of techniques for the amplification and monitoring to a professional standard. The module also provides a practical understanding of necessary equipment. This module is a combination of taught and self-directed study, culminating in a portfolio of evaluations and a reflective journal of the students live work.

Creative Performance Technology: This module develops an awareness of the way in which technology can be creatively integrated into a musical performance. It involves the study of hardware and software currently being used in performance events, as well as examining the way in which contemporary artists employ this technology. It provides an opportunity for the student to combine both these areas of hardware and software knowledge to stage their own performance in which technology plays a central role.

Work Based Learning: In this module, students will work off-campus in negotiated industry placements to create their work-based portfolio. Students will be encouraged to pursue a pathway that is relevant to both the course and their own career ambitions.

Multimedia: As the need for music and sound alongside other media continually increases, developing the skills to work in flexible ways with different media opens many opportunities within the industry. In this module, students will be introduced to the theoretical and practical elements of producing music and sound for a variety of media applications. This module explores the production of audio for a website, multimedia and synchronised visual works.

Advanced Programming: This module further develops principles and practices of application design covered in year one, and encourages students to experiment further by developing new and innovative applications. Students will learn advanced programming techniques in a range of industry-standard platforms to create a professional product.

Studio Production: The aim of this module is to analyse the environment, procedures, equipment and techniques involved in the production of music in the multi-track recording studio. Through appraisal and practice it investigates a range of advanced techniques, both musical and technical, for the production of recordings to a professional standard — incorporating both pre-production and post-production processes.

Research: In the ever-changing world of music and sound, the need for self-directive development plays an integral part in the progression of successful individuals. This module will provide students with a broad range of research skills that will be used to develop and support a variety of practical and theoretical applications. It will allow students to develop research skills in an academic context and to facilitate the completion of a piece of independent research.

Entry Requirements

Standard entry to this course requires a minimum of 32 UCAS points from a recognised level 3 qualification in a related subject (i.e. two A2s at grade D, extended diploma PPP, or an Access to HE). You are expected to hold GCSE English and maths at grade 4 or equivalent. We welcome applicants who do not match standard entry requirements but who can demonstrate the ability to study this subject at university level and who can evidence relevant experience.

How you will be assessed

Formative assessment is used to engage students in a range of activities within each module providing ongoing supportive feedback. At this stage, no formal grading takes place that counts towards either a mark for the module or the overall programme. Feedback given to students in relation to their progress will highlight their strengths, weaknesses and potential attainment in relation to the learning outcomes identified.

Summative assessment typically involves students submitting a piece of course work that is graded and counts towards their final mark for the module and overall programme. Each module may contain one or two summative assessment components. For each assessment activity, there will be a clear brief that as a minimum will indicate the following:

• the task(s) you are required to complete
• context – the relationship between the module and the aims of the assignment
• learning outcomes for the assignment – what you should have learnt as a result of successfully completing the task(s)
• assessment/Grading criteria, i.e. how your work will be graded names of members of staff involved with the assignment
• references and source material – to help you complete your assignments
• date set, submission deadline and grade/feedback turnaround time.
• what, how and to whom you have to submit your work.

The final grade on your DMU certificate at the end of this course follows the standard university foundation degree classification system of distinction, merit and pass.

Course Fees

Tuition fees

Total Fees: £6165.00

Additional Costs

Depending on availability, there may be trips that you will need to pay for costing between £5 – £50. Students on the programme are advised to purchase a pair of good quality headphones in the region of £30 – £50. Access to a suitable computer for running music production applications is also recommended.

Disclaimer

If the course is longer than one year the total fees are for the first year only and further fees may apply in future years. All fees are based on a ‘home’ learner status. Please contact us for information on overseas fees.

For more information, please see our course fee disclaimers page.

Learn more about fees

Course and Career progression

You can join the final year of the BSc (Hons) Degree Music Technology at DMU on successful completion of this course. You may also apply to other universities to complete related degrees. You will be able to work in music, sound technology, and associated industries, typically in a portfolio career. Graduates of the course have gone on to work as pro audio manufacturers such as Bang and Olufsen; sound designers for games companies such as Sony PlayStation; or as live sound engineers for local music venues and national tours. The work-based learning element of the course has been particularly successful in providing graduates with the opportunity to secure work in various aspects of the music industries.

What Happens Next

Applications must be made through the website using the course code W372, institution code L36. Due to the nature of this programme, you may also be asked to attend an interview to ensure this is the right course for you. Where necessary, other means of interview/audition (telephone, web-based, Skype) can be arranged.

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