Music degree – BA (Hons) – Bath Spa University Skip to main content

Music

BA (Hons)

Undergraduate degree - single or combined honours

  • UCAS codes: Institution B20, Course W300 or W305 (with professional placement year)

Award
BA (Hons) Music
School/s
Bath School of Music and Performing Arts
Campus or location
Newton Park
Course length
Three years full time, or four years full time with professional placement year. Part time available.
UCAS codes
Institution Code: B20
Course Code: W300 or W305
Campus Code: A,BSU

Entry requirements

We accept a wide range of qualifications for entry to our undergraduate programmes. The main ones are listed under 'Typical offers' in the main column below. For combined courses, please check both subjects. If your qualification is not listed, please email admissions@bathspa.ac.uk with your specific details.

Discover who you are as a musician and develop the skills you need to thrive in your future career.

  • Develop your skills through practical music-making every working day.
  • Learn how to make a difference in the world through your music.
  • Ready yourself for a viable and sustainable career in the wider music sector.

BA Music is a practical and applied degree designed to give you access to a broad range of careers in music through an artist-first approach to study. On the course, you'll consider how music exists in the world around us today, exploring both how music is not only something to do, but something to do things with. You'll learn to use your musical skill and knowledge to make a difference in the world, starting your career as a creator, manager, educator or leader in the community music and wellbeing sectors.

Our Music degree focuses on developing your creative skills as a practitioner in a wide range of musical styles and contexts. You'll have regular music-making opportunities, enhancing your skills as a practical and entrepreneurial musician who understands music as it is made in contemporary society, engaging directly with the music industry and diverse communities. You'll also develop as a music creator, exploring your personal musical identity through making original work.

Your creative and practical musicianship skills will be developed in the context of viable career paths within music. You'll gain the practical training and work experience you need to take music beyond concert venues and into peoples’ everyday lives – into schools, prisons, community organisations, health and social care settings and music societies – in an inclusive and sustainable way. You'll develop a portfolio of tangible experience and materials, ready to kick-start a career in music, such as through public-facing performances, professional placements, websites and online content, or educational materials and workshop plans. You'll work with our external partners across Bath and the wider region, enabling you to acquire the communication, business, entrepreneurial, digital literacy and evaluation skills you'll need to support your artistic and professional activities.


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What you'll learn

Overview

Starting with your own interests as a musician, the course develops your core skills and gives you ways to apply them in practical employment contexts including education, community music, health and wellbeing, and arts management. The course focuses on developing your artistic practice, as well as helping you learn new skills in areas such as:

  • Performance, improvisation and ensemble musicianship
  • Composition, arrangement and music for media
  • Recording, documenting and music production
  • Blogging, podcasting and online media
  • Music teaching, workshop leading and social engagement
  • Event management, marketing and creative entrepreneurship

Develop key professional skills and an impressive CV of evidence and experience that appeals to employers, preparing you for a range of different careers in the music industry.

Course structure

Year one
Focus on developing and refining your core practical musicianship skills. Through this practical work, you’ll learn about current music in relation to societal contexts, exploring the areas in which your practice can make a difference in people’s lives. You'll also develop your ability to make recordings and videos, learning to edit these for online contexts. Across the year, you’ll undertake a series of short projects, working in groups as well as individually.

Year two
Apply your skills within a series of industry contexts, helping you to understand what careers are available to you as a musician. You'll continue to develop your artistic practice, while considering how external factors such as collaborating with others or undertaking research can open up new ideas. This work is also explored through working with communities, in educational settings, and producing events. You'll also develop your ability to communicate ideas about music in different media, such as podcasts, video creation, and social media.

Year three
In your final year, you’ll be supported in transitioning to work as an independent industry professional. You’ll design and deliver projects in areas such as education, community music, health and wellbeing, and arts management. You’ll be able to focus on your individual career aspirations as a professional musician, and build the CV you need to get you there, supported by placement opportunities. You'll work on two large-scale projects of your choice, focusing on your creative practice and applied research. We help you plan and manage these projects, balancing creative, research and entrepreneurial decision-making to reach your goals. You'll also gain valuable industry experience through a work placement, helping you to demonstrate your potential to employers.

How will I be taught?

This is a practical course and its teaching is delivered through a mix of workshops and rehearsals, seminars and lectures, alongside tutorial support. We provide regular sessions with visiting professionals which offer key industry insight. You’ll work with our team of industry professionals, both within music and from other disciplines.

To find out more about how we teach and how you'll learn, please read our Learning and Teaching Delivery Statement.

 

How will I be assessed?

All of our assessments are based in practical and applied music-making. In addition to the creative work you make through performances and compositions, you’ll create outputs such as audio-visual documentation, podcasts, websites, written reports and research papers, teaching materials, project proposals and public events.

As a result, your assessment projects will form a portfolio that can be used to evidence your skills to employers, as part of a showreel or CV.

Professional placement year

Overview

This optional placement year provides you with the opportunity to identify, apply for and secure professional experience, normally comprising one to three placements over a minimum of nine months. Successful completion of this module will demonstrate your ability to secure and sustain graduate-level employment.

By completing the module, you'll be entitled to the addition of 'with Professional Placement Year' to your degree title.

Preparation

Before your Professional Placement Year, you'll work to secure your placement, constructing a development plan with your module leader and your placement coordinator from our Careers and Employability team.

How will I be assessed?

On your return to University for your final year, you'll submit your Placement Portfolio, detailing your development on your placement.

Facilities and resources

Where the subject is taught

The course is taught at our Newton Park campus, based in the Michael Tippett Centre, which houses a purpose-built concert hall, performance spaces, practice rooms, and recording studios.

Music students also have access to the campus’s wider arts facilities, including numerous electronic music studios, university theatre, and industry-spec TV studio.

Resources
  • A purpose-built concert hall with Steinway D grand piano
  • Seventeen practice rooms, including a drum room and four with electronically-variable acoustics
  • Five recording studios
  • Two multi-computer Mac labs with industry-standard software including Sibelius, Logic Audio Pro, Ableton Live, ProTools, and Max/MSP
  • University Asset Store offering free access to industry-spec audio-visual equipment for use on and off-campus
  • A large collection of acoustic and electric instruments, including five grand pianos, orchestral percussion instruments, early music instruments and a full Javanese gamelan
  • A substantial music library of scores and recordings, and a wide range of online music resources.

Opportunities

Study abroad

As part of your degree, you could study abroad on a placement at one of Bath Spa’s partner universities.

Global Citizenship

If you’re a full-time undergraduate student starting your first year at Bath Spa University, you can apply for the Certificate in Global Citizenship, which you’ll study alongside your degree.

You’ll gain global awareness and add an international dimension to your student experience, and funding is available. On successful completion of the programme, you’ll be awarded a Certificate in Global Citizenship. This is in addition to your degree; it doesn’t change your degree title or results.

Fees

Please note: Students from the EU, EEA and Switzerland are not generally eligible for the UK (Home) fee status. Please refer to the international student rate. Irish citizens and those granted Settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme are eligible for UK (Home) fee status. There are also other circumstances where this may apply: See UKCISA for more information.

UK students full time

2023/24 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £9,250
Year 2 Published Jan 2024
Year 3 Published Jan 2025

2024/25 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2024
Year 2 Published Jan 2025
Year 3 Published Jan 2026

2026/27 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2025
Year 2 Published Jan 2026
Year 3 Published Jan 2027
UK students part time

2023/24 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £4,625
Year 2 Published Jan 2024
Year 3 Published Jan 2025

2024/25 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2024
Year 2 Published Jan 2025
Year 3 Published Jan 2026

2026/27 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2025
Year 2 Published Jan 2026
Year 3 Published Jan 2027
International students full time

2023/24 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £16,150
Year 2 Published Jan 2024
Year 3 Published Jan 2025

2024/25 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2024
Year 2 Published Jan 2025
Year 3 Published Jan 2026

2026/27 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2025
Year 2 Published Jan 2026
Year 3 Published Jan 2027
All students full time - with professional placement year

During the placement year, the fee is reduced to 20% of the full time fee. Otherwise, fees are the same as for full time study. This applies to UK, EU and International students.

Interested in applying?

What we look for in potential students

Our BA Music degree is for those who want to do things with their music. You’ll have an energy and passion for music, whatever its style or genre. You’ll be interested in using music as a force for change – in industry, education, wider communities and everyday life.

We’re looking for creativity and potential over specific qualifications and grades. You'll have an opportunity to show us your talent and skills through interviews and portfolios.

Typical offers

We don’t ask for Music or Music Technology as pre-requisite qualifications for this course but we do ask all applicants for evidence of their experience in music via an application portfolio (see below).

  • A Level – grades BBB-BCC preferred
  • BTEC – Extended Diploma grades from Distinction Distinction Merit (DDM) to Distinction Merit Merit (DMM) accepted in a related subject.
  • T Levels – grade Merit preferred in a relevant subject.
  • International Baccalaureate – a minimum of 28 points are required
  • Access to HE courses – typical offers for applicants with Access to HE will be the Access to HE Diploma or Access to HE Certificate (60 credits, 45 of which must be Level 3, at Merit or higher) together with evidence of a high level of experience in music, composing, music technology or music performance. 

English Language Requirements for International and EU Applicants

IELTS 6.0 - for visa nationals, with a minimum score of IELTS 5.5 in each element.

Course enquiries

For further information about the programme or entry requirements, please email us at admissions@bathspa.ac.uk.

How do I apply?

Ready to apply? Click the 'apply now' button in the centre of this page.

Need more guidance? Head to our how to apply pages.

Interview and portfolio guidance

Before your interview, we’ll ask you to prepare a portfolio of your work as a musician, reflecting your individual interests and strengths. The portfolio should give us a sense of who you are and what you want to explore during the course. After we receive your UCAS application, we’ll send you a short form to complete which will ask for links to evidence of your musical activity online. Evidence might include a performance on YouTube, a composition on Soundcloud, a score on Dropbox, or something else.

Further guidance on compiling your portfolio will be provided when we send you the form. In advance of this, we recommend that you gather any work you already have in a format that can be shared online (e.g. in a folder and/or playlist). Your portfolio helps us get to know you and will help start our conversation at the interview.

Interview and portfolio guidance for international students

Just like our domestic applicants, international students are asked to submit an application portfolio (see above). While we would really like to invite you to campus to enjoy an applicant day, we accept that this may not always be possible and instead interviews can be held online. Further information will be provided on application.

Application contact: Professor James Saunders
Email: j.saunders@bathspa.ac.uk 

Three year course
With placement year

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