TOPIC STUDY 2B - 2022/3

Module code: MUS2062

Module Overview

The purpose of this module is to build on the knowledge and skills you have acquired in FHEQ 4 in research methods, discussion, and writing about music of the Western classical tradition or popular repertoires through the study of a single work or a small group of works the study of a single album or group of tracks and its/their various contexts. The module provides further foundation for historically based study at FHEQ 6.

This topic will change throughout the course of the degree and topics may include Popular Music and New Media, Popular Music and Culture, Musical Theatre, Jazz Studies, Opera Studies, Historical Performance Practice, Studying Music as Performance, and English Music from Elgar to Britten (this is not an exhaustive list). The module title identifies the topic in any given year.

Module provider

Music and Media

Module Leader

VOLIOTI Georgia (Music & Med)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 5

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

Overall student workload

Independent Learning Hours: 106

Lecture Hours: 22

Captured Content: 22

Module Availability

Semester 2

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module content

Indicative content includes:

  • What it might mean to understand music.

  • The roles and limits of contextual enquiry and close reading.

  • Reciprocal relationships between contextual enquiry and close reading.

  • Ways in which understanding popular music might be different from understanding music from the Western Classical tradition.

  • The relationship between lyrics and music in popular genres.

  • Selection of appropriate approaches for the study of popular music tracks.

  • Selection of appropriate approaches for the study of particular works.

  • Examination of a selected work or small group of works using a variety of approaches.

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Coursework ESSAY (3000 WORDS) 100

Alternative Assessment


Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide you with the opportunity to demonstrate your knowledge and understanding of the issues surrounding academic study of music through engagement with selected work(s) and their contexts.

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:

  1. A coursework essay with a maximum length of 3000 words (100%), to be submitted by the Monday of week 12. (Addresses learning outcomes 1–6.)

Formative assessment

An essay plan and bibliography, to be submitted by the Monday of week 7.


Detailed written feedback will be provided within three weeks of both the submission of the formative and summative assessment.

Verbal feedback will be given to contributions during class discussions as well as individual tutorials on coursework essay plans.

Module aims

  • Develop your knowledge of approaches to the historical, cultural, and technical understanding of music from the Western classical tradition or popular repertoires.
  • Further develop your skills and confidence in discussing Western classical music or popular repertoires in oral and written form to a level suitable for study at FHEQ level 5.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
1 Discuss a range of historical and technical issues identified regarding the work or works or album of tracks examined in the module KCT
2 Undertake the research and thinking required to formulate a suitable coursework essay topic. CT
3 Construct a cogent argument in written form KCT
4 Demonstrate the ability to access physical and online research resources in the library and through the library webpage. T
5 Cite and reference the work of others correctly. T
6 Compile a bibliography following departmental guidelines. 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:

Develop awareness of some of the intellectual means by which understanding of music is sought and achieved, and to develop the ability to employ some of these means to inform discussion of the selected work(s). This will involve directed reading and listening, class discussion, and the formation of critical responses to secondary literature in the coursework essay. The strategy will also reinforce techniques and styles of academic writing and analysis introduced in the FHEQ 4 modules Encountering Music History, Music Project 1A, and Topic Studies 1A and B that are critical to success in FHEQ levels 5 and 6.

The learning and teaching methods include:

  • Lectures, incorporating class discussions as appropriate (2 hours per week x 11 weeks)

  • Tutorials, during which you will formulate, under guidance, your coursework essay topic.

  • Guided reading and listening.

  • Use of SurreyLearn.

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: MUS2062

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Music BMus (Hons) 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Music and Sound Recording (Tonmeister) BSc (Hons) 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Music and Sound Recording (Tonmeister) BMus (Hons) 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Creative Music Technology BMus (Hons) 2 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 2022/3 academic year.