Module code: CMT3008

Module Overview

This module is designed to provide you with music programming skills beyond the modular synthesis methods explored in your second year.

Module provider

Music and Media

Module Leader

HALL Thomas (Music & Med)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 6

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Overall student workload

Independent Learning Hours: 128

Lecture Hours: 22

Module Availability

Semester 1

Prerequisites / Co-requisites

CMT2003 (Creating Music with Computers 2B) is a pre-requisite for this module

Module content

The following is indicative of likely topics (these may vary depending upon students’ interests and subject knowledge):

  • Overview of compositional programming (origins, variants,  text vs graphic coding methodologies, current state of affairs)

  • Investigation of the genre of algorithmic composition (historical and contemporary)

  • Programming: visual programming principles, design, coding skills, externals, data flow, control data handling, debugging

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting

Alternative Assessment


Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate artistic and technical knowledge.

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:

  • A 2 or 3 part musical canon performed by a patch, all written by the student (LO 1T5)

  • A fully functional algorithmic music patch that performs a piece of music (LO 1T5)

Formative assessment and feedback 

Students work on weekly technical tasks, elements of which may be used as part of their summative assessment.  These are shared in class and will receive verbal feedback as well as written feedback  through individual tutorials, email, and  online discussion  forums. Tutorials  (individual and group) will be offered both for general guidance and  for assessments. 

Module aims

  • To  introduce  techniques   and  processes  in   designing  and  programming  for composition
  • To understand how to create and customise bespoke user interfaces
  • To develop compositional skills in algorithmic and generative music
  • To explore the aesthetics of computer-generated music
  •  To  provide  tools  to  help  develop  authorial  voice  as  a  creative  musician using technology.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001  Demonstrate good practice in visual programming design KPT
002 Develop effective graphic user interfaces (GUI) KCT
003  Understand the basic principles of working with visual programming software KP
004 Plan for, document and design an algorithmic music program CPT
005 Be familiar with the aesthetics and practice of algorithmic computer composition KC
006 Systems planning and documentation T
007  Programming skills T
008 Problem solving T

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to create a series of lectures and workshops covering technical, aesthetic and creative skills to advance students compositional programming knowledge and abilities

The learning and teaching methods include:

  • One two-hour lecture/workshop per week

  • Guided reading

  • Video tutorials

  • Online/in class tests (not credit-bearing)

  • Coursework and feedback

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list
Upon accessing the reading list, please search for the module using the module code: CMT3008

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Creative Music Technology BMus (Hons) 1 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Music (Conducting) MMus 1 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Music (Performance) MMus 1 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Music (Composition) MMus 1 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2019/0 academic year.