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2024/25 Taught Postgraduate Module Catalogue

MUS5331M Short Dissertation

30 creditsClass Size: 30

Module manager: Dr Simon Baines

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

Year running 2024/25

Pre-requisite qualifications

Place on a taught postgraduate programme in Music; first degree in music or appropriate professional experience; demonstrable knowledge of music, and understanding of appropriate terminology.

This module is not approved as an Elective

Module summary

The dissertation module provides you with the opportunity to investigate a musical subject of your choice (subject to the approval of the module leader), and to present your findings in an extended essay of 6,000-8,000 words. Your Dissertation supervisor will help you to define the scope and topic of your Dissertation, but it should be one which enables you to demonstrate a range of skills, including assimilating scholarly literature, expressing concepts and hypotheses in a critical fashion, and working confidently as an independent learner.


This module aims to:
Provide students with an opportunity to develop their abilities to use and distinguish between primary and secondary sources of information in order to identify areas warranting further research.
Provide students with an opportunity to develop and refine their abilities to use appropriate research techniques.
Provide students with an opportunity to conduct an independent study under supervision.

Learning outcomes
On successful completion of the module students will have demonstrated the following learning outcomes relevant to the subject:

1. devise, plan, execute and report on an extended research project in music;

2. identify and make effective use of appropriate methodologies, theoretical frameworks, and source materials;

3. construct a coherent extended argument, supported with appropriate evidence, displaying a comprehensive and detailed knowledge of that subject;

4. display an understanding of the relationship between enquiry, evidence and interpretation;

Skills Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of the module students will have demonstrated the following skills learning outcomes:

5. demonstrate a degree of intellectual confidence and independence of thought

6. present work to a high standard of accuracy and consistency, in clear English and following established scholarly style.


Supported by tutorials with an approved supervisor, students will undertake a highly focused and detailed investigation that is appropriate to their programme of study, and present their findings in the form of an extended essay. The content of the dissertation will be developed in consultation with the supervisor.

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Private study hours295.00
Total Contact hours5.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)300.00

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Students will receive formative feedback on an initial topic proposal, ethical dimensions (as appropriate), and Interim Report, feedback on draft chapterand Draft Chapter (hence 4 points of formative feedback).

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Essay or Dissertation6,000-8,000 words100.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

Normally resits will be assessed by the same methodology as the first attempt, unless otherwise stated

Reading list

There is no reading list for this module

Last updated: 29/01/2024


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