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BSc (Hons) Music & Sound Production Technology

Music Technology degree show 2015 video
  • UCAS Code:
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    Sandwich (Thick) out of college.

Our captivating Music & Sound Production Technology degree will help you to develop your audio creation skills and push the boundaries of the field, by utilising cutting-edge technology and various sound production techniques to generate audio in a range of contexts. Ultimately, our expert lecturers will teach you how to compose, arrange, record, edit, manipulate and produce music and sound to a professional standard, while also helping you to hone your creativity. 100% of our final year students think our staff  are good at explaining things, so why not come along and meet us?

This course shares a first year with BSc (Hons) Music & Audio Technology, allowing you to change courses at the end of the year.

All statistics shown are taken from Unistats, Destination of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE), BU institutional data and Ipsos MORI (National Student Survey) unless otherwise stated.

Key information

Next start date:

September 2017, September 2018


Bournemouth University, Talbot Campus


4 years, with a minimum 30-week placement


Joint Audio Media Education Support

Relevant subjects:

Computing, IT, Maths, Music Technology, Physics,  Science, Technology

Required subjects:

For 2017 entry: All subjects considered. For 2018 entry at least one of: Computing, IT, Maths, Physics, Music Technology, Science, Technology

Entry requirements:

For 2017 entry (we will use the new UCAS tariff) : 104 to 120 tariff points, including 3 A-Levels, or equivalent qualifications. BTEC Extended Diploma: DMM. For more information check out our 2017 entry requirements page.

International entry requirements:

If English is not your first language you'll need IELTS (Academic) 6.0 (with minimum 5.5 in each of the 4 components), or equivalent. For more information check out our international entry requirements page.

Course details

On this course you will usually be taught by a range of staff with relevant expertise and knowledge appropriate to the content of the unit. This will include senior academic staff, qualified professional practitioners, demonstrators, technicians and research students. You will also benefit from regular guest lectures from industry.

Year 1

Core units

  • Synthesis & Effects: Gain an understanding of sound analysis and practical skills in creating sounds. You'll begin building a portfolio of work that you'll add to throughout your course.
  • Composition & Arrangement: Develop your creative skills by crafting musical and audio material. Focusing on critical listening, aural skills and composition basics, you'll learn to work with musicians in a creative context.
  • Production Techniques 1: An introduction to creating music using computer technology. You'll become familiar with production software and learn how to use these creatively.
  • Studio Techniques 1: The principles of studio techniques for recording, covering areas such as signal flow, gain structure and dynamic processors.
  • Software Programming for Digital Media: Acquire the fundamental computer programming skills needed for developing music apps and web based audio solutions.
  • Creative Business Awareness: An overview of the creative technology Industry and how businesses of different sizes work in this sector. You'll take part in business simulations and develop a range of professional skills like working in a team, project management, presentation and information communication.

Year 2

You'll begin to specialise according to your degree title. Some units will be common to BSc (Hons) Music & Audio Technology and BSc (Hons) Music & Sound Production Technology.

Core units

  • Synthesizers & Sequencing Systems: You'll extend skills and understanding of creating audio using a sequencer and MIDI instruments. You'll learn how MIDIs are used and its relationship to sequencing musical compositions. You'll also explore advanced synthesis techniques and create your own synthesizers.
  • Production Techniques 2: Advance production techniques that will help you develop your understanding in a contemporary musical context.
  • Recording and Acoustics: You'll use various various recording practices for the capturing of acoustic and electronic sources, using advanced stereo and multiple microphone recording technique, including the  creation, recording and post-production of audio and video. There will be a focus on current techniques used in the industry.
  • Composing Using Technology: Develop further skills in composition with technology. You'll be introduced to a number of contemporary approaches to improve your confidence and creativity as a composer.
  • Creative Practices: On this unit you will develop and apply a broad range of skills in the context of creating and presenting practice-based projects. This will equip you with the necessary skills for effective communication, the ability to work as part of a team and project management skills.
  • Commercial Business Environment: An opportunity to develop commercial and professional skills for operating a business in the creative Industry. The unit incorporates teamwork on simulated business projects.

Year 3 (Placement)

You will normally complete a 30-week minimum work placement which can be carried out anywhere in the world. You'll get an opportunity to include a period of academic study during this time. The placement year offers a chance to gain experience and make contacts for the future. Previous students have completed placements at Walt Disney and The Royal Shakespeare Company. You can exceptionally take a short 8 week placement, subject to agreement by the Placements Panel. 

Year 4 (Final year)

Core units

  • Individual Project: An opportunity to use what you've learnt to develop multimedia, network and business systems. You'll use strategies to help you with research, synthesis, realization and evaluation, and present your project using oral, written and modelling skills.
  • Creative Music Technology: Improve your knowledge of key developments in music technology research and use cutting-edge technologies creatively.
  • Advanced Recording & Production: Learn to balance creative needs with technical limits, and manipulate sound using MIDI sequencers and samplers.
  • Innovation & Business Development: You'll create innovative business ideas, and learn how to manage your own business.

Scheduled learning and teaching activities

Contact hours

The hours below give an indication of how you can expect to spend your time during each year of this course. You will learn through a combination of lectures, seminars, tutorials, workshops and practical sessions. Your independent learning could include reading books and journal articles, working on group projects, preparing presentations, conducting library research and writing your assignments.  In addition to the taught units on this course you will spend time in our dedicated studios on campus as well as commercial studios. You will have access to the latest software and build your own personal portfolio. We have many high-profile guest lectures from industry professionals giving students an insight into the world they will be working in once they've graduated.

Year 1 – 28% of your time will be spent in timetabled learning & teaching activities

  • Learning and teaching: 336 hours
  • Independent learning: 864 hours
  • Non-credit bearing learning and teaching: 21 hours

Year 2 – 29% of your time will be spent in timetabled learning & teaching activities

  • Learning and teaching: 353 hours
  • Independent learning: 847 hours

Year 4 - 17% of your time will be spent in timetabled learning & teaching activities

  • Learning and teaching: 224 hours
  • Independent learning: 976 hours

60% of the course is assessed by coursework

  • Year 1: 51%
  • Year 2: 90%
  • Year 3: 0% (placement)
  • Year 4: 100%

As well as coursework you will mainly be assessed through practical assessment. You will work as part of a group or team on some units, as well as creating your own portfolio of work throughout the course.

Programme specification

Programme specifications provide definitive records of the University's taught degrees in line with Quality Assurance Agency requirements. Every taught course leading to a BU Award has a programme specification which describes its aims, structure, content and learning outcomes, plus the teaching, learning and assessment methods used.

Download the programme specification for BSc (Hons) Music & Sound Production Technology.

Whilst every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of the programme specification, the information is liable to change to take advantage of exciting new approaches to teaching and learning as well as developments in industry. If you have been unable to locate the programme specification for the course you are interested in, it will be available as soon as the latest version is ready. Alternatively please contact us for assistance.

All statistics shown are taken from Unistats, Destination of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE), BU institutional data and Ipsos MORI (National Student Survey) unless otherwise stated.

Placement opportunities

Placements provide an excellent opportunity for you to gain first-hand industry experience which will support you when making decisions about your career, as well as enhancing future employment prospects. Read what our current students think about their placements.

As a BU student you will have access to advice and guidance to improve your interview techniques and support in gaining a placement that is right for you.

How long is my placement?

You will begin your placement after completion of your second year of study and you must complete a minimum of 30 weeks.

Placements abroad

Employment prospects are now truly international and BU encourages students to consider an international work placement or volunteering experience during their degree.

Your application

Background and experience

For this course we are looking for applicants who:

  • Have a strong interest in producing music and sound
  • Are looking to develop a career in music and sound production
  • Looking to use sound more creatively.

Selection methods

We’ll be selecting the candidates for this course by looking at their UCAS applications. For that reason, make sure your application really stands out from the crowd, and leave us in no doubt as to why you should be joining BU. You can find some handy hints about filling in your UCAS form on our how to apply webpages.

Our offer making process

Our offer making will typically be based on your three main graded qualifications, including any required subjects. Additional study may be valuable for breadth of study, and we will look at a range of qualifications and subjects, including the Extended Project Qualification and General Studies, although these may not be part of our offer.

If you do not meet the criteria of your original offer, we may still offer you a place. We will review your whole application and consider all academic qualifications (including those not in the offer) and the rest of the application to see if you have the academic potential to succeed on the course. If we feel the answer is yes, we will still confirm your place.

How we'll assess your application

We look at individual applications and make a tailored offer based on your potential to succeed on the course considering a range of factors, including your academic achievements, work and other experience, predicted grades, reference and personal statement, and in some cases, your performance at an interview/selection test.

If you meet one or more of our contextual data indicators for educational disadvantage (such as being in care, living in a low participation neighbourhood or in an area with less advantaged socio-economic characteristics), your offer could be between 6-20 points below the published tariff.

Unconditional offer scheme

Our Unconditional Offer Scheme seeks to reward exceptional applicants who are predicted to achieve top academic results. The scheme is offered to applicants on all courses who are predicted AAA at A-level/triple Distinction in BTEC Extended Diploma, or above, or equivalent, subject to any course selection measures and meeting other entry criteria (i.e. required qualifications). What’s more we’ll recognise your achievement if you meet these grades with an Academic Excellence Scholarship from £1,500 when you arrive*.

We believe that unconditional offers will reduce pressure on applicants who will continue to strive to achieve the best grades possible. Excellent grades will become a part of applicants’ CVs and are also required for BU’s scholarships. International qualifications are considered in the scheme; however applicants must satisfy the English language requirements. *Our scholarships are subject to terms, conditions and eligibility criteria, detailed on our scholarships pages.

2017 entry requirements

The new UCAS Tariff will be used for September 2017 entry

The entry requirements for this course are 104 to 120 tariff points, including 3 A-Levels, or equivalent qualifications. BTEC Extended Diploma: DMM.

UCAS have created a helpful calculator so you can calculate points to use for courses starting from September 2017 onwards.

Excluded subjects: This course does not accept General Studies

GCSEs: A minimum of 4 GCSEs grades A* - C (or grade 4 or above in the newly reformed GCSE grading) including a Maths and English or equivalent qualifications

Numeracy and Literacy: We need to be sure that you can express yourself in written English and have basic numeracy skills. We look at Level 2 of the National Qualifications Framework, which includes, but is not limited to, GCSEs, iGCSEs, Key Skills and Functional Skills Level 2.If you do not have formal qualifications to this level or have alternatives, we may still be able to consider your application – please contact the askBU Enquiry Service to find out more.

Other qualifications

We have outlined below other qualifications that we consider for this course. If you are studying a qualification that is not listed, please contact the askBU Enquiry Service. It may be that we can still consider it.

Access Courses: We welcome Access to HE Diploma applicants. This course requires applicants to Pass the Access to HE Diploma in ICT/Science/Business (with 60 Credits - at least 45 at level 3, remainder at level 2 or equivalent). Any combination of grades to meet the overall tariff is acceptable.

BTEC Qualifications

  • Extended Diploma: This course requires a Distinction, Merit, Merit.
  • Diploma: This course requires at least Distinction, Merit in addition to an A-Level or equivalent to achieve the overall tariff.
  • 90-credit Diploma: The 90-credit Diploma will be accepted as part of your overall tariff but it must be accompanied by A-Levels or equivalent qualifications.
  • Subsidiary Diploma: This course requires at least a Distinction in addition to two A-Levels or equivalent to achieve the overall tariff.   

A combination of BTEC qualifications to meet the overall course tariff is also acceptable.

Cambridge Pre-U Diploma: We welcome applicants studying the Cambridge Pre-U Diploma or a combination of Pre-U subjects and A-Levels.

European Baccalaureate: Applicants are required to achieve a minimum score of 71 - 75% overall.

International Baccalaureate (Diploma): The International Diploma is welcomed as part of the International Baccalaureate. This course requires 28 - 31 points including 5 points from each of the 3 Higher Level subjects.

Scottish Qualifications: Scottish Advanced Highers, Scottish Highers and other Scottish qualifications are all welcomed providing that your results meet the overall course tariff.

Welsh Baccalaureate: The Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced Diploma is welcomed alongside A-Levels or equivalent, to meet the overall course tariff.

OCR Level 3 Cambridge Technical Qualification: The OCR Extended Diploma or a combination of one Diploma plus one Introductory Diploma is acceptable for entry to this course.

  • Extended Diploma: This course requires Distinction, Merit, Merit.

Other combinations of OCR Level 3 Cambridge Technical qualifications to meet the overall course tariff may be acceptable.

Extended Project Qualification: The grade achieved for the Extended Project may be taken into account when considering whether or not to accept a candidate who has marginally failed to meet the conditions of their offer.

Deferred Entry: We are happy to consider applicants for deferred entry.

International entry requirements

English language requirements

If English is not your first language, you will need to provide evidence that you can understand English to a satisfactory level. English language requirements for this course are normally:

  • IELTS (Academic) 6.0 with minimum 5.5 in each of the 4 components, or equivalent.

View further information about our English language requirements.

If you do not meet the English language requirement for your degree then why not join our Pre-Sessional English course. Successful completion of our Pre-Sessional English course will meet your English language requirement, without the need to re-take IELTS.

Academic entry requirements

You can find details of the international qualifications we accept, and what level of study they apply to, on our entry requirements for non-UK students' page.

We offer a number of preparatory programmes through the Bournemouth University International College. These courses offer you progression from High School in your home country to a Bachelor’s degree at BU.

Options include:


This new course is designed to give you all the technical skills and theoretical knowledge you need to succeed in the music and sound production industry. There is growing demand for skilled graduates in this area within the music and entertainment sector, particularly given the expansion of the multimedia environment.

85% of our graduates are in work or further study within six months of completing their degree. Students from BSc (Hons) Music & Audio Technology have gone on to work for organisations such as Absolute Music, BBC, Allen and Heath, It's Done Technology, Sound Tree Music and Focusrite.

Among the roles you can take on with this degree are:

  • Music hardware developer
  • Music technology software developer
  • Music and audio consultant
  • Sound assistant
  • Sound engineer.

Industries worked in

  • Entertainment
  • Music
  • Audio
  • Media
  • Multimedia.

All statistics shown are taken from Unistats, Destination of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE), BU institutional data and Ipsos MORI (National Student Survey) unless otherwise stated.

Further study

Once you have completed an undergraduate honours degree, you can develop your education by studying for a postgraduate degree. Please visit our Postgraduate section for further details about our range of Master's degrees.

No hidden extras

As a student at BU we will provide many things to support you and there will also be additional costs you may encounter whilst studying at BU. The information below will help you understand our provision and what you need to budget for.

What you can expect from us

All of your teaching and assessments are included in your tuition fees including lectures/guest lectures and tutorials, seminars, laboratory sessions and specialist teaching facilities. You will also have access to a wide range of support and services. You will receive more details about these if you are offered a place on the course.

  • One set of study-related consumables such as a memory stick/ DVD
  • Materials for laboratory and field-based teaching activity
  • Support for placements (UK or abroad) and fieldwork
  • A range of student services – advisors, help desks, counsellors, placement support and careers service
  • The Library – access to a wide range of electronic resources (databases, e-journals and e-books), print and multimedia collections, subject librarians and study spaces
  • IT labs (some open 24/7), wireless network, AV equipment to borrow
  • Peer Assisted Learning (PAL) scheme
  • Disability and additional learning support
  • The BU Language Centre to help you develop/improve foreign or English language skills
  • 24 hours a day, 365 days a year security team.

Costs of living and other expenses you need to consider

  • Accommodation and living costs: view our price guide
  • Text books: remember that our award-winning library is stocked with a large range of text books for all courses, as well as online resources such as industry journals, free of charge
  • General stationery and other supplies such as print and presentation materials: the Students’ Union shops stock a wide range of stationery supplies on both campuses
  • Travel to, from and between BU campuses: our bus service operates in the local areas offering a subsided travel rate; we also have a large number of secure bike storage compounds
  • SportBU membership: check out our student membership packages, sports events, varsity teams, information about our new facilities and more on the SportBU webpages
  • Fieldwork travel, outdoor wear and footwear (where applicable)
  • Telephone and travel costs incurred when undertaking interviews for coursework/securing placements.
  • A fee will be payable towards the cost of an Educational Psychology Assessment if this is required in connection with additional learning support. BU pays for approximately two-thirds of the cost of this assessment for UK students. For more details and current pricing please visit the Student section of the website

Repeat Units

If you need to repeat one or more units during the course of your studies, you may be required to pay an additional fee of £1,500 per 20 credit unit.  

Financial help available from BU

We offer a range of scholarships and bursaries to students who are beginning their studies at BU. Our website also provides details on living costs, budgeting and paying your tuition fees.

Course changes

The table below indicates any changes to the course content.

Date Changes to this course Where the change was made Previous text
5/2/2016 Change of title to Year 2 unit:

the unit previously called Studio Techniques 2 has been renamed Recording and Acoustics

Course details content

Year 2 Group Project unit replaced by new unit called Creative Practices

Course details content

Group Project: Working as part of a team, you'll develop transferable skills such as time and project management, and learn how to review. You'll create effective online and offline communication materials.

What our students say

Asha Blatherwick

We get to combine creative technology with audio content and make cool stuff.

Hear from our staff

Tom Davis

Our practice and theory based output involves the creation of technology led environments for interaction and new musical instrument design.

Hear from our alumni

Tom Clarke

I’m working for Sonnox in Oxford with Ant Nicholls (a 2013 graduate) as a graduate software developer – really happy and loving it!

Facilities & opportunities

Absolute Music

Absolute Music

Discover the facilities at Absolute Music, where you can access recording studios and live rooms.

Music studio

Music facilities

Read about our on-campus music facilities and find out how you can make use of them during your course.

Additional information

Fees and funding

Fees and funding

Find out about fees and funding, including scholarships and bursaries.

applicant open days

Open Days

We give a warm welcome to anyone who comes to meet us and we love showing off our campuses and Bournemouth to prospective students and their families. 

International students

International students

We have a strong international student community. Find all the practical advice and information you need here.