COMPOSITIONAL PROGRAMMING B - 2020/1

Module code: CMT3009

Module Overview

This module is designed to further extend the computer programming skills for composition and performance developed in the Composition Programming A module. After a period of revision and consolidation, students are encouraged to develop their own projects with the assistance of the module lecturer.

Module provider

Music and Media

Module Leader

HALL Thomas (Music & Med)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 6

JACs code: W300

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

Module Availability

Semester 2

Prerequisites / Co-requisites

CMT3008 (Compositional Programming A) is a pre-requisite for this module

Module content

The following is indicative of the possible topics, which may vary depending upon staff expertise and students interests:

•     Advanced programming techniques, including software externals, data flow, control data handling, DSP for audio

•     Advanced algorithmic techniques for computer composition

•     Interactive control using external hardware

•     Advanced interfacing with third-party software

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Coursework portfolio comprising an advanced musical system using computer programming accompanied by a commentary 100

Alternative Assessment

N/A

Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate creative and technical musical knowledge in the context of computer programming.

Summative assessment for this module consists of:


  • A portfolio comprising an individual advanced algorithmic and/or interactive musical system using a presentation format appropriate to the type of project chosen by the student with accompanying commentary (LO 1-4)



Formative assessment and feedback

Students are encouraged to work on technical tasks and programming problems given to the who class or tailored the the project chosen by the student. Student work are shared in class and will receive verbal feedback as well as written feedback through individual tutorials, email, and online discussion forums as appropriate. Tutorials (individual and group) will be offered both for general guidance and for assessments.

Module aims

  •  To build on existing programming skills for musical composition
  • To develop knowledge and practice of algorithms for music
  • To enhance techniques for live performance, compositional systems and interfacing with other systems
  • To allow students to develop their own music programming projects
  • To further develop awareness and appreciation of contemporary compositional practice and aesthetics

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001 Create customised patches for algorithmic synthesis, sampling, audio processing/manipulation as appropriate to an individual project KPT
002 Create patches that integrate the control and audio capabilities of visual programming software using appropriate interface design KPT
003  Demonstrate good practice in algorithmic and non–linear compositional techniques KCT
004 Use a custom–built software system for live or algorithmic performance KPT
005 Demonstrate an appropriate level of knowledge of contemporary practices and aesthetics involving compositional programming (fixed media and live performance) KCP
006 Develop independent learning in the context of problem solving for advanced programming skills PT

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Overall student workload

Independent Study Hours: 128

Lecture Hours: 22

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

  • Interactive learning materials

  • 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

Reading list for COMPOSITIONAL PROGRAMMING B : http://aspire.surrey.ac.uk/modules/cmt3009

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Creative Music Technology BMus (Hons) 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Music (Conducting) MMus 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Music MMus 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 50% is required to pass the module
Music (Composition) MMus 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 50% 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 2020/1 academic year.