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2023/24 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

MUSS2620 Music Technology Skills and Techniques

20 creditsClass Size: 45

Module manager: Dr Ewan Stefani

Taught: Semesters 1 & 2 (Sep to Jun) View Timetable

Year running 2023/24

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)


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/or digital audio/music (specific topics may vary according to staff and facilities availability). Alongside practical work, students will develop awareness of the work of a range of relevant practitioners and have an awareness of the contexts within which their work is situated.


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.)


A typical syllabus for the module is divided into two semesters. For example:
1. Studio sound recording — practical recording skills; studio-based work; historical context and case studies in sound recording.
2. Digital audio/music: — music software environments; digital and analogue-modelling synthesis; music production skills and techniques.
These examples are indicative and the precise content will change depending on staff and the details of the project and the technology used to realise it.

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Group learning41.004.00
Private study hours170.00
Total Contact hours30.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)200.00

Private study

Private study includes, indicatively:
• 5 hours per week (110 total) 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.
• 2.5 hours per week (55 total) research, reading, peer-discussion and note-taking on current and historic practice relevant to the topic of study
• 7.5 hours per semester (15 total) planning and logistics as required (e.g. organising and scheduling recording sessions, designing and planning, booking and returning equipment, etc.)

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Interim formative assignments set throughout the year allow students to get feedback and improve portfolio work in progress before final submission at the end of module. This also means that workload is spread throughout the year, precluding ‘bunching’ of work around assessment/examinations time.

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Group Project15-20 minute group presentation30.00
PortfolioPortfolio of practical work with documentation70.00
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: 28/04/2023 14:43:21


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