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Music

BA (Hons)

Undergraduate degree - single honours

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.

  • Learn through making music every day: perform, workshop, improvise, devise, write, play, and discuss with your fellow students and your tutors.
  • Make a difference: use music as a force for personal and social change in wellbeing, community, and education settings.
  • Build a viable, sustainable, career: connect your musical skills with broad areas of the industry.

Starting with your own interests as a musician, our Music degree develops your core skills as an artist (singer, songwriter, performer or composer), and explores the many ways you can build a sustainable career in music.   

This is a broad and hands-on course. Throughout your studies, you'll delve deeper into your own musical interests and explore various genres and styles. Our experienced staff will help you develop your own sound and become a confident performer.  

Most of what you produce for assessment could be used beyond your studies in support of your future career. In other words, what you make for us you also make for you. You’ll 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 and coaching, including leading workshops  
  • Event management, marketing, freelancing and the business of music. 

All this develops your key professional skills and experience and enables you to build an impressive CV of evidence that appeals to employers, preparing you for a range of careers in the music industry. 


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What you'll learn

Overview

On this course, you’ll have regular music-making opportunities and be able to explore your personal musical identity through making original work. You’ll develop your creative skills as a practitioner in a wide range of musical styles and contexts.  

BA Music aims to provide you with access to a broad range of careers in music. You’ll undertake practical training and work experience and take music beyond concert venues and into schools, community organisations, health and social care settings and musical societies.  

You'll also develop a portfolio of tangible experience and materials that you can use to demonstrate your skills to employers, such as:

  • public-facing performances
  • websites and digital content
  • educational materials such as workshop plans.
Course structure

Year one
In your first year, our focus is almost exclusively on developing your musical skills: singing or playing on stage, creating your own music, and understanding the wider musical world.

During practical musicianship workshops, you’ll try new instruments, sing in choirs or join ensembles. Through this practical work, you’ll learn about music in relation to what’s going on in society and explore the ways your music can make a difference in people’s lives.

You’ll create a portfolio of your performances that showcases your skills as an artist. In the process, you’ll develop your ability to make recordings and videos and edit these for online contexts.

Year two
In your second year, you’ll continue to develop your practical music-making skills while considering how external factors such as collaborating with others or undertaking research can generate new ideas for your music.

Core modules focus on making music accessible to all and using it as a means of communication. Optional modules allow you to enhance your research or event planning abilities.

You'll also develop your ability to communicate ideas about music using different media, such as podcasts, video and social media.

Year three
This year is all about you, your musical interests and who you are as a musical entrepreneur.

You’ll get the chance to run a range of large-scale projects in areas that you choose, such as education, community music, wellbeing, and arts management. 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 short, observational work placement, helping you to transition to the professional world and demonstrate your skills to potential employers.

How will I be taught?

Workshops are instruments-out: you’ll make music, experiment with unfamiliar instruments, solve problems and complete creative tasks.

Regular rehearsals and tutorials with our teaching staff help you develop specific passages of music that you’re working on and take your music in different directions.

We provide regular sessions with visiting professionals, who offer key industry insights.

You’ll also explore current issues in music through seminar discussions, some of which operate in a flipped classroom model, where you and your fellow students lead the discussion with support and moderation from your tutors.

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?

Practical music-making forms the basis of most assessments. You may create compositions, performances, audio-visual documentation, podcasts, websites, written reports, research papers, teaching materials, project proposals, and events.

As a result, you'll form a portfolio of assessments that can demonstrate your skills to employers, as part of a showreel or CV.

Course modules

This course offers or includes the following modules. The modules you take will depend on your pathway or course combination (if applicable) as well as any optional or open modules chosen. Please check the programme document for more information.

Year one (Level 4) modules
  • Practical Music Skills
  • Playing, Performing and Recording
  • Listening and Hearing
  • Music in Society
  • Improvising and Devising
  • Creative Sandbox
Year two (Level 5) modules
  • Practice and Research
  • Music for All
  • Music for Learners
  • Communicating Music
  • Interdisciplinary Collaboration
  • Music as an Event 
Year three (Level 6) modules
  • Wellbeing, Inclusivity, and Sustainability
  • Professional Placement
  • Creative Project
  • Research Contexts
  • Research Project 

Facilities and resources

Where the subject is taught

We’ll teach you at our Newton Park campus, in the Michael Tippett Centre, which contains 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
  • 17 practice rooms, including a drum room and four with electronically variable acoustics
  • Five recording studios
  • Two multi-computer Mac labs with industry-standard software
  • 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.

Careers

This degree in Music prepares you for various careers. You could become a performer, manager, educator or leader in the community music and wellbeing sectors.

Our Music graduates have gone on to work in film and TV and music management. Others have set up community arts organisations. Some have (after additional study and qualification) set up music therapy practices and taught at primary and secondary level.

Adobe Creative Campus

Develop a wealth of indispensable digital skills that you can take into your future career. One of only three Adobe Creative Campuses in the UK, we provide all Bath Spa students with access to the full Adobe Creative Suite, giving you the tools to communicate creatively, whatever your course or chosen professional field.   

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.

Fees

2024 entry
Student Annual tuition fee
UK full time £9,250
UK part time £4,625
International full time £16,905

Professional Placement Year

During the placement year, the fee is reduced to 20% of the full time fee. This applies to UK and EU/International students.

  • UK: £1,850
  • International: £3,381

Interested in applying?

What we look for in potential students

Our Music course 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 get the chance 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 32 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. 

If you don’t meet the entry requirements above, we may be able to accept your prior learning or experience from outside of formal education. See our Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL) page to learn more.

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 gather a collection of your work. This collection should showcase your unique interests and talents and give us a sense of who you are and what you want to explore during the course.

Once we receive your UCAS application, we'll send you a brief form where you can submit links to your musical activity online. Evidence might include a performance on YouTube, a composition on SoundCloud, a score on Dropbox, or something else.

We'll provide further guidance on compiling your portfolio when we send you the form. To prepare, we suggest that you collect your work in a format that you can share online, such as a folder or playlist. Your portfolio helps us get to know you and will inform our conversation at the interview.

Interview and portfolio guidance for international students

Just like our domestic applicants, international students should submit a portfolio (see above). While we'd like to invite you to campus for an applicant day, if that's not possible, we can conduct interviews online instead. We'll provide further information after you apply.

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

Three year course
With placement year

Website feedback to web@bathspa.ac.uk