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About the course

Do you have a passion for music that you want to share with the world? Solent University’s music journalism programme can help you to develop the writing, broadcasting and media skills you’ll need to succeed as a professional journalist working in the music business.

Solent University’s Journalism, Publishing and Public Relations subject area was ranked 17th in the Guardian University League Tables 2019.

Students will hone their skills and begin to build a portfolio of published work by writing for Audio Addict, the University’s in-house music magazine. The magazine is professionally printed and distributed, and is enjoyed by an audience of over 40,000 people. Students are also encouraged to set up their own publications. Past students have launched the hugely successful national platform Noise Canon as well as the punk and hardcore digi-mag New Roots.

Past music journalism students have taken a leading role in SMILEfest, interviewing guests, reviewing live shows and putting together event programmes and press releases for the attention of national music publications.

Popular music journalism students have also benefitted from a range of guest speakers including: live events assistant from BBC Radio 1 and 1xtra, Mel Lewis; NME features editor, Laura Snapes; Libertines drummer, Gary Powell; label manager, Wayne Clarke; Mute Records’ head of press, Zoe Miller; tour manager, Tre Stead; Independent columnist, Fiona Sturges; Monkeytown Records recording artist and producer, Alex Banks; Radio 1 DJ, Danny Howard; legendary drum & bass DJ, Fabio; and CEO of The Association for Electronic Music, Mark Lawrence.


You have the opportunity to study abroad in one of our partner universities for a semester on this course.
Study abroad
If you're not quite ready for a full undergraduate degree, there's alternative entry through one of our foundation years.
Foundation year available
As part of your studies you will have the opportunity to undertake a work experience placement.
Built in work experience placement
After successfully completing your studies, there's an opportunity to continue your studies at Solent.
Further studies
You can study this course part-time.
Part time option

Students can expect to learn a range of critical theories alongside magazine design; website and social media management; radio, film and photography production; research techniques and professional copywriting.

What does this course lead to?

Course graduates have found positions in prominent music journalism magazines and websites, including DJ, Drowned in Sound, Art Rocker and Loaded.

Other graduates have found roles such as: junior music campaign officer, radio presenter, music producer or online marketing assistant and content creator at organisations like Sunday Best Records, Wilful Publicity, Reprezent Radio, Vanilla Underground and D&G Media.

Who is this course for?

This BA (Hons) Popular Music Journalism programme is tuned for those who want to pursue a career in journalism with a specific skew towards the music industry. Students study popular music theory as well as a range of essential journalistic skills that could be applied to any area of journalism.

Facts and figures

Fees icon

Fees and costs

Tuition fees

The tuition fees for the 2019/20 academic year are:
UK, EU and Channel Island full-time fees: £9,250 per year
International full-time fees: £12,875 per year
UK and EU part-time fees: £4,625 per year
International part-time fees: Students from outside the EU are usually unable to obtain a visa for part-time study. Please visit our  visas and immigration page for more information.

For further information, please visit our tuition fees page.

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

The 2019/20 other costs are not yet available. For guidance, the 2018/19 other costs were:

Optional costs:
Study trip costs in years one, two and three: £250 (Paris) and £750 (New York) per year.
Year three costs: £250 (Booking bands, guest speakers, printing cost, Wordpress and travel).

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

Graduation is the ceremony to celebrate the achievements of your studies. For graduates in 2018, 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.
Key entry requirements icon

Key entry requirements

96 - 112 UCAS tariff points from A-levels or equivalent

  • A minimum of two completed A-levels, a BTEC Extended Diploma at MMM or BTEC Diploma at DM or equivalent qualification, or a combination of qualifications which comply with the minimum entry requirement of 96 UCAS points.
  • Direct entry into the second or third years 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 Foundation Year.
  • Applicants must attend an interview as part of the application process.
  • 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 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.

Study location

East Park Terrace

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.

Please click the links below to apply through UCAS:

Mode of study
Full-time  3 years  Apply 

Media Foundation Year route:

Mode of study
Full-time  4 years  Apply 

Part-time and distance learning courses

Applications for part-time and distance learning courses are made directly to the University and can be made at any time prior to the start of the course. Please contact admissions for further details.

Applications for 2019 will open soon. For any enquiries, please email admissions.

Email us

What you'll study

Year one

Core units
  • Understanding the Music Industries
  • Popular Music in Context
  • Interactive Music Media Production
  • Popular Music Journalism Practice
  • Popular Music Press: Histories
  • Writing for the Music Industries

Year two

Core units
  • Mediating Music
  • Audio-Visual Music Journalism
  • Music Journalism and Production for the Internet
  • Music Journalism and Production for Print Magazines
  • Music Journalism in Context


  • Noise Annoys: Experiments and Alternatives in Popular Music
  • Pop, Politics and Protest
  • Copyright, Piracy and the Music Industries
  • Fanzines to Facebook
  • Freelancing at Solent Creatives (Communications & Marketing) 2

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

Year three

Core units
  • Individual Project
  • Collaborative Project
  • Creative Entrepreneurship
  • Freelancing and Professional Development


  • Festival Cultures
  • Film Music
  • Consuming Music
  • Copyright, Piracy and the Music Industries
  • Freelancing at Solent Creatives
  • Creative Entrepreneurial Freelance Practice
  • Creative Business Start-up

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


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


Assessment by coursework


Practical exams

Students' work

Meet the course team

Russell White academic profile Russell White Head of Subject View profile
Martin James academic profile Martin James Course Leader View profile
Chris Anderton academic profile Chris Anderton Senior Lecturer View profile
James Hannam academic profile James Hannam Senior Lecturer View profile
Johnny Hopkins academic profile Johnny Hopkins Senior Lecturer View profile
Louise Morrell academic profile Louise Morrell Senior 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.


The University provides excellent learning resources and facilities to its students, from campus-wide wireless to extensive library services and dedicated student working spaces with plenty of laptop points. We also have cutting-edge IT facilities and an industry-standard newsroom.

The course team’s industry links have provided past students with a variety of unique work experience opportunities at magazines, PR companies, conferences and live music events. Recent live events include Blissfields, Bestival and Pulse Festival.

Your future

Studying this course can lead to a career in music journalism as well as a number of other potential fields, such as in magazine production, copywriting, social media management, web designing, music PR and education.

  • Arts
  • Entertainment
  • Celebrity and lifestyle journalism
  • Website design and management
  • Television and radio research
  • Scripting and production
  • Music PR
  • Music biography
  • Academic research. 

Industry links

The teaching staff includes internationally renowned music journalists, authors, magazine editors and designers with unparalleled links with the music and media industries. The course is supported by regular guest speakers from industry, live briefs and industry mentoring. There are regular lectures by visiting teaching fellows, including James McMahon (editor of Kerrang!).


Our students have gained placement and freelance work experience at magazines and websites including NME, Q, Mojo, Kerrang!, Mixmag, Loaded, The Fly, Drowned in Sound, The Quietus and Art Rocker, and newspapers including The Sun and The Independent. They have also found placements at Radio 1 and Radio NRJ (France).

Students with an interest in PR have enjoyed internships at Division PR, Freeman PR and Purple PR, among others. Students on this course have also worked closely with music festivals like Isle of Wight, Sonisphere, Bestival, Blissfields and Pulse, producing magazines, documentaries, blogs and daily news-sheets.

Previous students have run the Twitter feed for Glastonbury, written articles for Glastonbury Press and produced Isla, the official Isle of Wight Festival magazine. Students have also worked on the Bestival Bugle, the daily paper for Bestival, and produced a daily paper for Blissfields festival.

Further study

Enhance your career prospects by continuing your study at Solent.

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