Module code: MUSM042

Module Overview

This module seeks to advance individual compositional technique and creativity beyond the scope of undergraduate study, informed by a range of global and historical practice. 

Module provider

Music and Media

Module Leader

MERMIKIDES Milton (Music & Med)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 7

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

Overall student workload

Independent Learning Hours: 96

Lecture Hours: 22

Seminar Hours: 6

Tutorial Hours: 2

Guided Learning: 12

Captured Content: 12

Module Availability

Semester 1

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module content

The following is an indication of the likely content of the module:

·         A series of seminars covering a wide range of musical practices.

·         Presentation of a number of compositional/practice-based challenges (e.g. commissions, applied contexts, etc. from which you will be required to select three).

·         Content related to student work.

·         Presentation and discussion of student work.

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Coursework 1500 WORD COMMENTARY 25

Alternative Assessment


Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to develop their compositional skills through engagement with contemporary compositional techniques, theories and awareness of relevant creative practice.

The formative assessment and feedback for this module consists of:

  • Compositional exercises exploring particular techniques

  • Feedback from performers 

Summative assessment for this module includes

  • A compositional exercise, exploring particular compositional concepts, showing specific theoretical understanding and creative application. (Learning outcomes 1, 2, 4. 5)

  • An essay, no longer than 1500, detailing the student’s compositional approach, critical reflection and contextual awareness of relevant contemporary practice. (Learning outcomes 2-5)

  • A composition for small ensemble, with a total duration 4-10 minutes), with scores and audio realisation. The composition is assessed on the idiomatic, imaginative and effective musical application of module concepts, score presentation and idiomatic realization of the works (Learning outcomes 1-5). The composition is worth 50% of the final grade.

Detailed feedback on the compositional exercise, ensemble composition and essay are given (with a breakdown of strengths and weaknesses) in order to enhance continuing compositional practice. 

Module aims

  • The aims of this module are to develop compositional practice to a postgraduate and professional level through improved technical, idiomatic, theoretical creative and research skills.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001 Gain the practical skills to create compositions of a professional standard, informed by a range of global and historical practices. P
002 Show awareness of relevant and diverse compositional practice and techniques, and contextualize your work accordingly. KP
003 Carry out research and analysis beyond lecture materials in support of individual creative practice. KCT
004 Demonstrate a proficiency in contemporary instrumental, technological and production skills. KPT
005 Improve and broaden your listening skills, and the understanding and appreciation of a wide range of global and historical musical styles KP

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Methods of Teaching / Learning

·         Composition seminars.

·         Tutorials.

·         Guided reading and listening.

·         Responding to questions in class.

·         Preparing and giving class presentations.

·         Producing two items of individual compositional work (one with formative assessment, one summative assessment).

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: MUSM042

Other information

The Department of Music and Media is committed to developing graduates with attributes encompassing employability, digital skills, global and culture awareness, sustainability as it relates to music and the wider arts and, finally, resourcefulness and resilience. 

Resourcefulness and Resilience: This module builds a student’s confidence and ability to work independently as a composer. It involves dealing with a range of styles, techniques, media and managing complex projects with minimal assistance. These demands help to develop both resourcefulness and resilience in the field of composition.

Employability: This ability to work with efficiency and professionalism as a composer is a highly employable skill, broadening opportunities for professional practice and collaboration in a wide range of musical fields. This module motivates students to engage directly and develop such skills.

Global and cultural capabilities: Students on the module are required to engage with a wide range of repertoire from a range of compositional cultures and practices, with a sense of open listening and appreciation. These include a range of notational, stylistic and cultural approaches.

Digital capabilities: This module invites engagement with a range of contemporary digital technologies, including music sequencing, music notation, live electronics, recording and production. 

Sustainability: This module allows the production of music with minimal physical and energy resources, travel impact and other consumables. The ability to create, collaborate and publish outputs with such digital approaches has a direct and significant impact on sustainability.

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Music MMus 1 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 2025/6 academic year.