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About the course

BA (Hons) Digital Music is an innovative and unique course that focuses on the production of contemporary dance music such as house, drum’n’bass, trance, techno, bassline, grime, hip-hop, electronica, and DJing. As a student, you’ll learn to take your production skills to a high professional level so that you can release your music through labels, or perform live for audiences at clubs and festivals.

You’ll also learn how to apply these production skills to the film and games industries, thereby widening your employment opportunities.

Under the guidance of practising producers, composers, musicians and DJs you’ll study digital music composition; production; sound design; audio engineering; sound editing; music and sound design for film and games; digital DJing and the live performance of digital music.

Southampton Solent University’s BA (Hons) Digital Music course offers students the chance to develop their digital music production skills and apply them in a range of relevant contexts. Whether they are hoping to build a career creating sound effects for games and animations, producing songs and mixes for live performance or working with directors to score films and TV programmes, this course offers students the broad range of skills required to succeed.

Learners build these skills through regular use of industry-standard hardware. Available hardware includes:

  • 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 able to tailor this course to their own interests through optional projects and units in the second and third years. These units can help to inform future careers and ensure that technical skills are underpinned by a solid understanding of the wider music industry.

Study abroad Foundation year available Professional memberships Built in work experience placement Specialist facilities

Digital music students learn from experienced musicians, DJs and producers with a wealth of first-hand knowledge to share.

What does this course lead to?

Course graduates have gone on to a variety of roles, including trainee assistant sound editor, composer/electronic music producer, mastering engineer and post-production sound editor.

Who is this course for?

This digital music programme is geared towards students who want to perfect their production, composition, and sound design skills. Graduates will learn studio and live production skills, as well as skills that can be used in the production of sounds for film, TV and games.

Facts and figures

UCAS codes icon

UCAS codes

Full Time

  • 4 Years Popular Music Production Foundation Year W301
  • 3 Years Standard Entry WJ39
Fees icon

Fees and costs

Tuition fees

The tuition fees for the 2018/19 academic year are:
UK, EU and Channel Island full-time fees:£9,250 per year
International full-time fees: £12,500 per year

Other costs

While most course costs are covered by your tuition fees, some essential resources and optional extras may need to be paid for separately. These additional costs are listed below. For advice on budgeting and managing your money, please contact student.funding@solent.ac.uk.

Year one:
Optional UK study trip: £275 (plus lunch and dinner expenses)

Year two:
Optional European study trip: £715

Year three:
Optional USA study trip: £1,100

Bursaries and scholarships

Southampton 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.


Key entry requirements icon

Key entry requirements

112 UCAS tariff points from A-levels or equivalent

  • A-levels, a BTEC Extended Diploma at DMM or BTEC Diploma at D*D* or equivalent.
  • Direct entry into the second or third year may be considered for this course.
  • Applicants over the age of 21 may be considered based on relevant experience, without having the required tariff points.
  • Alternative entry to this course is available through the Popular Music Production Foundation Year.

We welcome applicants from a diverse range of backgrounds. Applicants who are not in possession of the minimum entry requirements but are able to demonstrate aptitude, enthusiasm and motivation will be considered on an individual basis and may be admitted subject to satisfactory interview and/or portfolio. Please contact us for further details.

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 minimum 6.0 overall with a minimum of 5.5 in each individual component
  • TOEFL IBT minimum 80 with a minimum of 19 in each individual component
  • 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.


89%

of students overall, are satisfied with the quality of the course

Study location

East Park Terrace

Got a question about this course?

Contact our Ask Solent team:

ask@solent.ac.uk 023 8201 3039

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: www.ucas.com.

Your application should reach UCAS by 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 June. The UCAS Code for the University is S30, code name SOLNT.

How to apply

What you'll study

Year one

Core units
  • Music Theory for Computer Musicians
  • Composition for Computer Musicians
  • Digital Music Production (Audio)
  • Digital Music Production (Synthesis)
  • Electronic Music in Context (Historical)
  • Digital Music Technology

Year two

Core units
  • Concept Album
  • Digital Music Applications
  • Electronic Music in Context (Contemporary)
  • Digital Music Live
  • Music for Film

Options

  • Songwriting Techniques
  • Music for Digital Media
  • Digital Djing
  • Experimental Music Production
  • Music and Audio Post-Production
  • Freelancing at Solent Creatives
  • Model Your Business

Please note: Not all optional units are guaranteed to run each year.

Year three

Core units
  • Digital Music Final Major Project
  • Employability and Entrepreneurship
  • Collaborative Project
  • Music Industry Project

Options

  • Music Industry Portfolio Project
  • Songwriting Portfolio
  • Festival Cultures
  • Film Music
  • Consuming Music
  • Experimental Music
  • Advanced Music Production
  • Music and Audio Post Production
  • Freelancing at Solent Creatives
  • Creative Entrepreneurial Freelance Practice

Please note: Not all optional units are guaranteed to run each year.

Support

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

Key figures

95%

Assessment by coursework

5%

Practical exams

Meet the course team

Jenna Barker academic profile Jenna Barker Senior Lecturer View profile
Simon Fisk academic profile Simon Fisk Senior Lecturer View profile
Paul Rutter academic profile Paul Rutter Associate Professor View profile
Phil Durrant academic profile Phil Durrant Associate Lecturer View profile
Natalia Kulabuchova academic profile Natalia Kulabuchova Associate Lecturer View profile
Christopher Lewis academic profile Christopher Lewis Associate 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.

Facilities

You will work in a Mac-based studio and have access to a wide range of digital music production and DJing software including Logic Pro Studio, Ableton Live, Native Instruments Komplete 10 and Traktor.

You’ll use industry-standard hardware including Korg MIDI keyboards, Korg Electribes and Traktor S4, S2 and X1 controllers. You'll also have access to a dedicated mixing booth attached to the main teaching studio.

Students also have access to nine recording studios, four large rehearsal rooms, digital and analogue workstations, vocal booths and a 200-seat performance space.

Students are encouraged to develop their own personal style, taking part in independent projects or working in collaboration with other creative disciplines. Southampton is a vibrant city with a large and diverse range of night-time entertainment venues. Students also benefit from the city’s convenient transport links with central London.

Your future

As a graduate you will have acquired a wide-ranging skillset suited for a variety of roles in the digital music industry including producing dance music, studio-based third-party production, and creating music for online media, DJing and live performance.

Past graduates have gone on to become producers and DJs in their own right, as well as mastering engineers, sound editors, label management, music promotion, composers for film and media, and sound designers for games.

You will be well placed for music-related roles in the film, TV and games industries, including production sound, post-production sound, sound editing, music editing, Foley artistry, sound design, ADR recording and editing, sound effects editing and film composition.

Suitable roles for graduates include:

  • Composer
  • Working for record labels
  • Performer
  • Music producer in the creation of your own work or for third-party clients
  • Music retail in management or purchasing
  • Publishing.

95%

of students go on to work and/or study

100%

of students feel they received sufficient advice and guidance in relation to the course
  • The staff are friendly and my lecturers are always ready to help and give me advice. The facilities are amazing, we love the latest equipment and I can easily say that this university is really working for the students.

    Aleksandar Astoyanov

  • The teaching staff at Solent are amazing – it’s like learning from friends. I have learned different methods and techniques from the lecturers because they all have their own way of doing things.

    Chris Baker, Graduate

Industry links

You’ll have a chance to pitch for work with our Solent Creatives freelance agency, working on live briefs from real-world clients.

Members of the digital music course team have close links with the leading music producers, label owners, and professional DJs within both the city and the wider industry.

Placements

The digital music team runs a programme of activities designed to encourage and help students to get internships and work placements within industry.

Digital music students are also given the chance 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.

Further study

Enhance your career prospects by continuing your study at Solent.

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