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Do you have a passion for music? Would you like to develop your performance skills alongside an understanding of music history and knowledge of music theory? The Music Foundation Year is a fully integrated programme with the BA (Hons) Music course, and will develop key musical skills in piano playing, theory, harmony and aural.

During your studies, you will develop your performance skills through expert one-to-one tuition with the same specialists who teach on our degree programme.  The course will teach you about interpretation and guide you on how to practice effectively and handle performance anxiety.  You will build your knowledge of music theory, and the study of harmony will be delivered in a fresh, creative way using the guitar. Your creativity will develop through improvisation, taking inspiration from the music you perform.

Our Foundation Year introduces you to music in the everyday environment of the home, asking how music is made and consumed, and its function in society. We explore the most personal side of music – how emotions, sexuality, identity and personality are shaped by music.

Whether you are a complete beginner or a highly accomplished pianist, you will develop piano playing skills needed for a career in music.

Upon successful completion of the Foundation Year, you can automatically continue your studies on the BA (Hons) Music degree where you will build upon the knowledge gained in this initial year. The Foundation Year gives you the space to focus on the one subject, music, developing the skills and knowledge you need within a Humanities environment.

Study Music at Northumbria from Northumbria University on Vimeo.

Do you have a passion for music? Would you like to develop your performance skills alongside an understanding of music history and knowledge of music theory? The Music Foundation Year is a fully integrated programme with the BA (Hons) Music course, and will develop key musical skills in piano playing, theory, harmony and aural.

During your studies, you will develop your performance skills through expert one-to-one tuition with the same specialists who teach on our degree programme.  The course will teach you about interpretation and guide you on how to practice effectively and handle performance anxiety.  You will build your knowledge of music theory, and the study of harmony will be delivered in a fresh, creative way using the guitar. Your creativity will develop through improvisation, taking inspiration from the music you perform.

Our Foundation Year introduces you to music in the everyday environment of the home, asking how music is made and consumed, and its function in society. We explore the most personal side of music – how emotions, sexuality, identity and personality are shaped by music.

Whether you are a complete beginner or a highly accomplished pianist, you will develop piano playing skills needed for a career in music.

Upon successful completion of the Foundation Year, you can automatically continue your studies on the BA (Hons) Music degree where you will build upon the knowledge gained in this initial year. The Foundation Year gives you the space to focus on the one subject, music, developing the skills and knowledge you need within a Humanities environment.

Study Music at Northumbria from Northumbria University on Vimeo.

Course Information

UCAS Code
W310

Level of Study
Undergraduate

Mode of Study
1 year full-time followed by a further 3 years full-time or 4 years with a placement (sandwich)/study abroad

Department
Humanities

Location
Various Locations

City
Newcastle

Start
September 2020

Deparment / Humanities

Our Department of Humanities includes the subject areas of Music, History, English Literature, English Language and Linguistics, Creative Writing and American Studies.

Humanities Video Gallery

Discover more about what you will learn on the course, more about our academics research interests, and hear from current students by watching our videos.

Book an Open Day / Experience Music Foundation Year

Visit an Open Day to get an insight into what it's like to study Music Foundation Year. Speak to staff and students from the course and get a tour of the facilities.

You will work in an environment in which all learning is informed by the academic expertise and research specialisms of our staff.

In performance, you will receive individual instrumental/vocal tuition. This is complemented by seminars covering strategies for practice/performing and performance practice, attendance at concerts and open rehearsals, and participation in masterclasses and workshops. This introduces you to the way performance is taught throughout the Northumbria degree.

In Music in the Home, lectures explore the history of music, supported by independent study. Music history seminars may be based around group discussion of musical texts or broader questions, with seminars often led by students. Music history is brought alive in this module through visits to libraries, archives, houses and other institutions, where you will have the opportunity to engage with the primary source materials of music history, giving you insights into how music research is done.

Workshops allow you to develop practical skills and provide a means of putting theory into practice. For example, your theoretical knowledge of harmony will be developed through practical workshops involving the guitar and improvisation on your instrument; you will learn to play the piano in small groups.

In preparation for your future career, the Foundation Year has a module introducing you to the music profession in which you will interact with musicians pursuing various career paths, and will take you out into the wider city and community, taking advantage of our partnerships with various musical and arts organisations.

Book an Open Day / Experience Music Foundation Year

Visit an Open Day to get an insight into what it's like to study Music Foundation Year. Speak to staff and students from the course and get a tour of the facilities.

Our staff are internationally renowned specialists in their fields and, having previously held positions in various universities across the UK, are highly experienced teachers. With their areas of expertise ranging from 16th-century music and performance practice to the history of instruments and American popular music, you will benefit from learning from outstanding scholars. You will also meet external professionals working in various areas of music and the arts, and will have tuition with highly accomplished and experienced instrumental and vocal specialists who also teach on our degree programme.

A personal tutor will be assigned to you during induction week who will help you manage the transition to university smoothly and successfully. They will continue to support you throughout the course of your studies, and can provide support for both your personal and academic development.

The programme leader and module tutors also play active roles in guiding you through your course with specific time allocated to students to allow for private feedback and consultation, giving you a great deal of individual support.

Book an Open Day / Experience Music Foundation Year

Visit an Open Day to get an insight into what it's like to study Music Foundation Year. Speak to staff and students from the course and get a tour of the facilities.

Your learning environment will be both colourful and dynamic. You will study within an interdisciplinary Humanities environment, which is part of a faculty containing performing arts.

There are specialist, dedicated music spaces for teaching and learning, including soundproofed facilities to allow you to practise, alongside a range of instruments available to support your performance skills. Other teaching spaces are shared with performing arts students. You will have access to software such as Sibelius on computers equipped with midi keyboards, as well as use of computer suites across campus for the completion of written work.

Concerts take place on campus in the Great Hall, which is ideal for smaller scale performances, and elsewhere in the City, making good use of our partnerships with various organisations. For example, concerts often take place in Newcastle Cathedral, a venue well suited for larger-scale performances involving orchestras, bands and choirs.

The University library, including books, reference works and a range of digital resources, will be available to you throughout the entirety of your study. You will benefit from our state-of-the-art electronic reading lists, which allow you to access resources for each module directly, and our electronic learning platform, Blackboard, will help you make the most of your independent study time.

Book an Open Day / Experience Music Foundation Year

Visit an Open Day to get an insight into what it's like to study Music Foundation Year. Speak to staff and students from the course and get a tour of the facilities.

All music staff at Northumbria are engaged with producing research in their respective fields at an international level, and the team contains active professional performers. Their research is embedded into the Foundation Year, which greatly enriches the study of music. As a student, you will be taught by everyone on the academic staff.

From the onset, you will have opportunities to develop an understanding of how to research music through visits to libraries, archives and other institutions containing original source materials, which brings music history to life.

Throughout the duration of this course, you will experience research- and practice-informed teaching, which is both contemporary and innovative and will allow you to develop your musical skills and academic knowledge.

Book an Open Day / Experience Music Foundation Year

Visit an Open Day to get an insight into what it's like to study Music Foundation Year. Speak to staff and students from the course and get a tour of the facilities.

The Foundation Year develops key musical skills in piano playing, theory, harmony and aural, all of which are necessary for an advanced study of Music, and for careers in performance, musicology and music teaching. It helps you to develop as a performer, and gives you the intellectual skills needed for degree-level study. Above all, you will develop confidence in all areas of study to proceed to the next level.

Book an Open Day / Experience Music Foundation Year

Visit an Open Day to get an insight into what it's like to study Music Foundation Year. Speak to staff and students from the course and get a tour of the facilities.

Successful completion of this course guarantees you a place on our BA honours Music degree. The Foundation Year and the Music degree are fully integrated, and have been developed together to allow a seamless transition from one to the other.

Music in the Home will furnish you with the intellectual skills you need, fostering critical enquiry and encouraging your curiosity. The dedicated performance strand gets you ready for high-level study in the degree, where your individual lessons will be supported by seminars relating to the act of performance as well as interpretation and performance practice (how repertoire was performed in its time).

The Foundation Year introduces the skills required to manage a freelance, portfolio career and work in arts administration, which are later developed upon in the BA (Hons) Music degree. It will allow you to interact with musicians pursuing various career paths, and will take you out into the wider city, taking advantage of our partnerships with various musical and arts organisations.

Book an Open Day / Experience Music Foundation Year

Visit an Open Day to get an insight into what it's like to study Music Foundation Year. Speak to staff and students from the course and get a tour of the facilities.

Entry Requirements 2020/21

Standard Entry

80 UCAS Tariff points
From a combination of acceptable Level 3 qualifications which may include: A level, BTEC Diplomas/Extended Diplomas, Scottish and Irish Highers, Access to HE Diplomas or the International Baccalaureate

Find out how many points your qualifications are worth using the UCAS Tariff calculator: www.ucas.com/ucas/tariff-calculator

Subject Requirements:
Grade 6 in Music Performance, or a recognised equivalent.

GCSE Requirements:
Students will need Maths and English Language at minimum grade 4 or C, or the equivalent.

Additional Requirements:
Applicants may be required to attend an audition.

International Qualifications:
We welcome applicants with a range of qualifications from the UK and worldwide which may not exactly match those shown above. If you have taken qualifications outside the UK you can find out how your qualifications compare by visiting our country page www.northumbria.ac.uk/yourcountry

English Language Requirements:
International applicants are required to have a minimum overall IELTS (Academic) score of 6.0 with 5.5 in each component (or approved equivalent*).

*The university accepts a large number of UK and International Qualifications in place of IELTS. You can find details of acceptable tests and the required grades you will need in our English Language section. Visit www.northumbria.ac.uk/englishqualifications

Fees and Funding 2020/21 Entry

UK/EU Fee in Year 1**: TBC

Undergraduate fees are set by Government and are subject to annual review. Once these have been approved we will update fees/funding information for UK and EU students.


International Fee in Year 1: TBC

Scholarships for 2020/2021 entry have not been announced. Please visit the 2019/2020 international scholarship page for the 2019/2020 scholarship offer.


ADDITIONAL COSTS

TBC


FUNDING INFORMATION

20/21 fees and funding information has not been confirmed. 19/20 information is listed below.

Click here for UK and EU undergraduate funding and scholarships information.

Click here for International undergraduate funding and scholarships information.

Click here for UK/EU undergraduate tuition fee information**.

Click here for International undergraduate tuition fee information.

Click here for additional costs which may be involved while studying.

Click here for information on fee liability.

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* By submitting your information you are consenting to your data being processed by Northumbria University (as Data Controller) and Campus Management Corp. (acting as Data Processor). To see the University's privacy policy please click here

Modules Overview

Modules

Module information is indicative and is reviewed annually therefore may be subject to change. Applicants will be informed if there are any changes.

AD3014 -

Humanities Portfolio: Skills for University (Core,20 Credits)

On this module you will develop a 1500-word essay and an accompanying 500-word commentary demonstrating and evidencing the broad range of academic, professional and transferable employability skills you have developed throughout the Foundation year. These will include demonstrations of cogent academic prose, accurate academic citation, research skills, independent learning, oral presentation, and team work. You will develop these assignments throughout semester one, drawing on the content of the module’s lectures, workshops and seminars.

More information

MU3001 -

Music in the Home (Core,20 Credits)

This module introduces you to music in the most intimate environment – the home. Topics vary from year to year, but range from the keyboard music of the seventeenth-century home or domestic music-making in the Tudor household to the family relationships of the Mendelssohns and Schumanns in the nineteenth century, and from the music-making of American soul artists to the partnership of Britten and Pears at the Red House in Aldeburgh. We open up three questions that are fundamental to the history and performance programme in our undergraduate degree as a whole: how music is made; how music is consumed; and how music shapes cultural change. As we do so, we explore the most personal side of music – how people express their experience of life through music-making, understanding how emotions, gender, sexuality, identity and social class can all be shaped by music.

More information

MU3002 -

Performance (Core,20 Credits)

This module is focused on your individual, one-to-one instrumental or vocal tuition. Working with a specialist on your instrument/voice, you will consolidate your technique while developing skills in performing music which will enable you to communicate effectively with an audience. The course will cover areas such as effective practising, dealing with performance anxiety, the importance of good posture both to music making and your health. You will expand your repertoire, and engage critically with musical performance through attendance at concerts, recitals and open rehearsals.

More information

MU3003 -

Theory, Harmony and Improvisation (Core,20 Credits)

In this module, essential knowledge of harmony will be delivered in a fresh, innovative and creative way. You will focus on absorbing a sense of harmonic progression through learning to play guitar chords. You will gain the facility for harmonising a range of melodic material, identifying similar progressions of chords in disparate genres. You will also experiment with improvising on your instrument over chord progressions you have learned, and use repertoire on your instrument as inspiration for your own creativity. This experiential learning is at the heart of the course, but as well as learning through doing, you will also study music theory and aural to help you relate your experience to written music. Although the guitar is used as a tool to teach harmony, you will also acquire some basic guitar playing skills that may be of use to you in a career in Music.

More information

MU3004 -

Essential Skills in Piano-Playing (Core,20 Credits)

An ability to play the piano reinforces knowledge of harmony and music theory, and is essential for further study, when you will go on to develop keyboard skills necessary for high-level work and research. Piano playing is also essential for players and singers of other instruments, especially those whose performances involve an accompanist. An ability to play the piano is absolutely essential for all music teachers.

This module assumes no prior experience of piano playing, and aims to bring you to the level of competency needed to progress further in your academic and musical career. Those who are beginners can expect to have developed a degree of technical competence at about ABRSM Grade V by the end of the year. More experienced players, especially those whose main instrument is piano, organ or harpsichord, will work on the art of accompaniment.

More information

MU3005 -

The Music Profession (Core,20 Credits)

This module encourages you to think about different possible career paths in the music profession, and how they may be combined. It involves going out into the wider community to meet musicians working in differing contexts and environments. At the heart of the module is your engagement with musicians, usually in the places where they work. You will meet performers, scholars, teachers of various kinds, and music administrators. Many will be active in more than one of these areas; some will be employed, others working on a freelance basis.

This module is intended to get you thinking about the musical and generic skills you will need for various kinds of work in the music business. It will also encourage you to think about how the skills you acquire when studying music may be useful in other contexts, and the many and varied careers open to music graduates.

More information

Any Questions?

Our admissions team will be happy to help. They can be contacted on 0191 406 0901.

Contact Details for Applicants:

bc.applicantservices@northumbria.ac.uk

Current, Relevant and Inspiring

We continuously review and improve course content in consultation with our students and employers. To make sure we can inform you of any changes to your course register for updates on the course page.

Your Learning Experience find out about our distinctive approach at 
www.northumbria.ac.uk/exp

Admissions Terms and Conditions - northumbria.ac.uk/terms
Fees and Funding - northumbria.ac.uk/fees
Admissions Policy - northumbria.ac.uk/adpolicy
Admissions Complaints Policy - northumbria.ac.uk/complaints

Order your prospectus

If you're a UK/EU student and would like to know more about our courses, you can order a copy of our prospectus here.

Get a downloadable PDF of this course and updates from Humanities

Enter your details to receive an email with a link to a downloadable PDF of this course and to receive the latest news and information from Northumbria University

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