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About the course

Got a passion for music production? Hoping to pursue a music degree here at Solent University? This year-long popular music production foundation programme is structured to equip you with the broad range of production skills you’ll need to progress onto a full degree.

Students will spend the year building production skills and industry awareness, working alongside our experienced course team on a range of different equipment. Available facilities include:

  • five recording studios and four mix workstations, all equipped with Pro|Tools HD and NI Komplete,
  • three ICON DCommand worksurfaces,
  • an analog studio with Audient ASP8024,
  • outboards by Neve, Lexicon and Universal Audio,
  • microphones by Neumann, AKG, Coles, Rode,
  • plug-ins by Waves, McDSP, Sonnox,
  • Yamaha M7 and LS9 digital live mixers,
  • and a Music Technology Lab with 25 Apple Macs, Pro Tools, Logic and Sibelius.

Students are encouraged to pursue industry work experience throughout the course, and Solent University is ideally located for students to take advantage of the city’s thriving music scene.

In the second semester, students will have the opportunity to tailor the course to their own career ambitions, undertaking an assessed live sound production, studio recording project or music production project.

This course has access to Solent's specialist facilities.
Specialist facilities
After successfully completing your studies, there's an opportunity to continue your studies at Solent.
Further studies

Students build a broad knowledge of music production, studio recording and live sound engineering.

What does this course lead to?

On completion of the foundation year you choose to progress onto one of our undergraduate 3-year degrees: 
BA (Hons) Digital Music 
BA (Hons) Popular Music Performance and Production
BSc (Hons) Popular Music Production

Who is this course for?

Students who are new to music production or those who do not yet meet the entry requirements for an undergraduate music production degree will benefit most from the foundation programme.

Upon completion, students will be able to progress directly into the first year of a relevant undergraduate course.

Facts and figures

Fees icon

Fees and costs

Tuition fees

The tuition fees for the 2020/21 academic year are:
UK and EU full-time fees: £9,250 per year
International full-time fees: £11,660 per year

For further information, please visit our tuition fees page.

Bursaries and scholarships

Solent University offers a range of bursaries and scholarships that provide financial assistance or waive fees for tuition or accommodation. Each bursary or scholarship has specific eligibility criteria. Check out our  bursaries and  scholarships pages to find out more.

Graduation costs

For graduates in 2020, there is no charge to attend graduation, but you will be required to pay for the rental of your academic gown (approximately £45 per graduate, depending on your award). You may also wish to purchase official photography packages, which range in price from £15 to £200+. Graduation is not compulsory, so if you prefer to have your award sent to you, there is no cost. Extra guest tickets will go on sale after results publication and will be sold on a first-come-first-served basis. The cost per ticket was £15 in 2019, but this fee is subject to change for future years. Please note, we do not guarantee there will be any extra tickets available to purchase.
Key entry requirements icon

Key entry requirements

48 UCAS tariff points from A-levels or equivalent

  • A-levels, a BTEC Extended Diploma at PPP or BTEC Diploma at MP or equivalent.
  • Applicants over the age of 21 may be considered based on relevant experience, without having the required tariff points.
  • If you are applying from outside the UK, find information about entry requirements, visas and agents for your country here.

English language requirements

Applicants who do not have English as their first language will be required to demonstrate an approved level of proficiency in the use of the English language. The agreed minimum requirements for this course are:

  • IELTS 5.5 overall with a minimum of 5.0 in each individual component
  • TOEFL IBT 71 with a minimum of 19 in in each individual component- TOEFL is only valid for EU students
  • or equivalent.

Qualifications are checked before enrolment, and international students must bring their original certificates or certified copies when coming to study at the University.

The University also offers a pre-sessional English programme for international students who wish to improve their level of English before starting a degree course.

Got a question about this course?

Contact our Ask Solent team: 023 8201 5066

How to apply

Any student applying for the first year of a full-time/sandwich undergraduate course must apply through UCAS (University and Colleges Admissions Service). This includes mature, overseas and EU students.

Nearly all schools and colleges offer their students the facility of applying electronically through the UCAS website using 'Apply'; it may also be used by those applying independently in the UK and overseas. This facility and all course information can be found on the UCAS website:

Your application should reach UCAS by 15 January if you hope to enter a course the following autumn. Early application is advised for the most popular subject areas. Late applications may be made until the end of June. The UCAS code for the University is S30, code name SOLNT.

How to apply

What you'll study

Year one

Core modules
  • Introduction to Popular Music
  • Introduction to Digital Music
  • Introduction to Popular Music Performance
  • Music Industry Pathway Project
  • Major Project (Degree Related)


Web-based learning

Solent's virtual learning environment provides quick online access to assignments, lecture notes, suggested reading and other course information.

The Student Hub

The Student Hub is a central space where you can access all of the information and support you need during your time at University.

Professional and experienced staff can help resolve any query, and if they cannot answer the question themselves they will find the person who can.

Career support

Meet the course team

Frankie Murdoch academic profile Frankie Murdoch Lecturer View profile

The university cannot guarantee any particular members of staff will teach specific aspects of the course in the future, but will endeavour to ensure the teaching team maintains their balance of experience and qualifications.


You will be able to use industry-standard software such as Logic Pro X™ and Pro Tools™, building essential knowledge for work in the music production industry.

You will also have access to the latest studio and production equipment, including five top-of-the-range multitrack music recording studios, four radio studios, a 5.1 surround sound video dubbing studio, a 5.1 post-production suite, ProTools™ and Pyramix™ workstations, two multi-camera TV green-screen studios and a wide range of location equipment for recording at live events. Solent University is home to a range of high-end production equipment including nine recording studios, four large rehearsal rooms, digital and analogue workstations, vocal booths, a 200-seat performance space and the latest Apple hardware.

Students are able to get involved with SMILEFest, the University’s annual music industry conference.

Past speakers include Zoe Ball; The Blackout; Gallows; Steve Strange; Download booking executive and Livenation promoter, Andy Copping; Kerrang editor, James McMahon; and Bloc Party/Franz Ferdinand PR guru, Janine Warren.

Your future

At the end of the course you’ll have a solid foundation of technical and academic skills ideal for progress onto five related degrees at Solent; BA (Hons) Popular Music Journalism, BA (Hons) Popular Music Production, BA (Hons) Popular Music Performance, BA (Hons) Popular Music Performance and Production or BA (Hons) Digital Music.

Suitable roles for graduates include:

  • Performer
  • Music producer
  • Music retail or management
  • Session player
  • Band member
  • Tour support
  • Live sound technician.

Industry links

Solent’s close links with the music industry enables live briefs to be incorporated into coursework. This way you can be assessed on real-world outcomes, either producing work for an external client or working entrepreneurially.

The course team are actively involved in the contemporary music scene, bringing guest lectures from industry professionals, including James Zabella (DJ), Colin Lester (artist management), Rob Da Bank (DJ, producer, Bestival organiser) and Wez Saunders (producer).


You will be encouraged to get involved in the local music scene and supported in finding valuable work experience during the course. Past placements have included independent Southampton venues such as The Joiners, Talking Heads, Avondale House and Unit, giving students fantastic opportunities to perform and engage with the local industry. Southampton is a fantastic city for live music, and has many venues to get involved in.

Further support is offered through our Solent Music organisation, providing work experience opportunities at summer festivals, local venues and with local music organisations. You’ll also have a chance to join our Solent Creatives freelance agency, working on real-world briefs from commercial clients.

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