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2019/20 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

MUSS2620 Music Technology Skills and Techniques

20 creditsClass Size: 45

Module manager: Dr Ewan Stefani
Email: e.j.stefani@leeds.ac.uk

Taught: Semesters 1 & 2 View Timetable

Year running 2019/20

Pre-requisite qualifications

The following are beneficial, though not essential:
• Previous experience with digital audio software
• Previous experience with studio hardware (microphones, mixing desks, etc.)
• A qualification in A-Level Music Technology (or equivalent)

Pre-requisites

MUSS1620Sound, Technology, and Music

This module is not approved as a discovery module

Module summary

This module introduces students to a range of techniques in order to develop skills in sound recording and electronic/computer music. Alongside practical work, students will develop awareness of the contexts within which their work is situated.

Objectives

1) Introduce students to a range of fundamental techniques and concepts in order to apply knowledge and develop skills in one or more of the following areas:
a. Computer music
b. Sound recording;
2) To develop students’ initiative and skill in independent creative problem solving in the use of music technology;
3) To ensure that the skills and techniques are developed alongside an awareness of the relevant contextual praxes and discourses (which might include current or historic, critical, aesthetic, theoretical, or philosophical discourse / practice).

Learning outcomes
On completing the module students will:
1) know how to apply a range of practical techniques relevant to one or more of the distinct areas:
a. Computer music
b. Sound recording;
2) know how to apply knowledge and develop these skills through initiative and independent creative problem solving (to the extent that an independent project in a related area could be developed in a subsequent year of study, for example);
3) be familiar with the work of a range of relevant practitioners and have an awareness of the contexts within which their work is situated. (This might include awareness of a range of current or historic practice and/or critical, aesthetic, theoretical, or philosophical discourse.)


Syllabus

A typical syllabus for Computer Music may take the following format. In this case building a modular analogue-modelling synth is used as an example; obviously the precise content would change depending on the details of the project and the software package being used to realise it.
Week 1: Lecture demonstration: Max/MSP 1 (Multimedia Cluster)
Week 2: Lecture demonstration: Max/MSP 2 (Multimedia Cluster)
Week 3: Lecture demonstration: Max/MSP 3 (Multimedia Cluster)
Week 4: Group seminars in computer cluster
Week 5: Group seminars in computer cluster (repeat)
Week 6: Reading week / independent study
Week 7: Lecture demonstration: Max/MSP 4 (Multimedia Cluster)
Week 8: Group seminars in computer cluster
Week 9: Group seminars in computer cluster (repeat)
Week 10: Group seminars in computer cluster
Week 11: Group seminars in computer cluster (repeat)

A typical syllabus for Sound Recording may take the following format:
Week 1: Lecture on history of sound recording topic
Week 2: Studio recording skills 1
Week 3: Lecture on history of sound recording topic
Week 4: Studio recording skills 2
Week 5: Studio recording skills 3
Week 6: Reading week / independent study
Week 7: Lecture on history of sound recording topic
Week 8: Studio recording skills 4
Week 9: Lecture on history of sound recording topic
Week 10: Studio recording skills 5
Week 11: Studio recording skills 6

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Practical Demonstration41.004.00
seminars31.504.50
Lecture42.008.00
Practical62.0012.00
Private study hours171.50
Total Contact hours28.50
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)200.00

Private study

Private study includes, indicatively:
• 106.5 hours independent development and application of the relevant techniques, i.e. practical work with the technology itself (with software; in the studio; etc. as appropriate to the topic), including reading, peer-discussion and note-taking on the technical theory relevant to the topic of study (e.g. analog & digital audio; acoustics; signal processing and computational concepts etc.), consultation of documentation/manuals etc.
• 50 hours research, reading, peer-discussion and note-taking on current and historic practice relevant to the topic of study
• 15 hours planning and logistics as required (e.g. organising and scheduling recording sessions, designing and planning, booking and returning equipment, etc.)

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Student progress, as appropriate to topic, may be monitored through any combination of the following:
• practical help and problem solving in seminars;
• formative assessment tasks;
• in-class tasks under the supervision of a tutor;
• online fora, discussion boards, email;
• online virtual classroom sessions.

Methods of assessment


Coursework
Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Portfoliofolio of exercises75.00
Presentationgroup presentation of c.10mins25.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

In some cases, due to the time and access to facilities/equipment required, it may be necessary to offer resits of practical work (i.e. for the Portfolio assignments) during the following academic session rather than over the summer period. If appropriate to the topic, certain Portfolio tasks may be completed in timed, supervised sessions. Others may be completed unsupervised and submitted by a given deadline.

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 30/04/2019

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