Current 2016/17 Module Catalogue

Module Details

Module Code:
Module Provider:
Music and Media
Number of Credits:
Module Title:
Module Co-ordinator:
MERMIKIDES MJ Dr (Music & Med)
ECTS Credits

Module Availability

Semester 2

Assessment Pattern

Assessment TypeUnit of AssessmentWeighting %
Coursework Coursework - Portfolio And Commentary100

Alternative Assessment


Qualifying Condition(s)

A mark of 40% is required to pass the module.

Module Overview

This module seeks to advance individual compositional practice.


None for Music and Tonmeister students, otherwise by approval from relevant departmental heads

Module Aims

The aims of this module are to:

  • Develop research and analysis in support of creative practice.
  • Develop musicianship skills in support of creative practice.
  • Develop skills in writing about creative practice.
  • Develop individual compositional practice.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module the student should be able to:

  • Carry out research and analysis in support of creative practice. C K T
  • Have an improved understanding of theoretical concepts relating to compositional practice. C K P
  • Compose strongly idiomatic music. P
  • Have an improved set of instrumental, technological and production skills. P
  • Improve your listening skills, and the understanding and appreciation of a wide range of musical styles. T
  • Develop a critical attitude towards the sources of knowledge you draw on during your studies and learn how to manage the information they contain in order to meet the demands of your assignments. C T

Key: C-Cognitive/Analytical; K-Subject Knowledge; T-Transferable Skills; P- Professional/ Practical skills

Module Content

The following is an indication of the likely topics to be covered:

  • Idiomatic composition for solo instruments, ensemble and/or electronics
  • Notation for contemporary music.
  • Compositional methodology.
  • Content related to student work.
  • Presentation and discussion of student work.
  • Module content addressing broadly applicable compositional techniques informed by a range of sources.

Theoretical areas may include (indicative content)

  • Scale construction
  • Modes
  • Process and compositional systems
  • Electro-acoustic composition
  • Cryptograms and Sonification
  • Improvisation, Indeterminancy and Chance

Methods of Teaching/Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to:

Encourage an active engagement with compositional practice through concept-led research and listening in a wide range of styles, and practical experience in writing for a range of idioms (using instrumental, electronic and mixed media).

The learning and teaching methods include:

  • Lectures.
  • Seminars.
  • Tutorials.
  • Workshops.
  • Guided reading and listening.
  • Responding to questions in class.
  • Preparing and giving class presentations.
  • Producing a portfolio of research material and an accompanying composition.
  • Producing a portfolio of individual compositional work.

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 for this module consists of:

  • Weekly compositional exercises exploring particular techniques
  • Feedback during workshops and/or Surreylearn
  • An unassessed presentation in week 10 on the students’ developing portfolios and research.

Summative assessment

Student learning is assessed through a compositional portfolio (worth 100% of the final grade) which includes

  • A suggested number of 3 notated works with a total duration of up to 15 minutes.
  • A commentary of up to 2000 words analysing the works and providing critical reflection and contextualisation of creative practice.
  • An audio realisation of the works.
  • A score or relevant notation of the works

This will gauge the strength and weaknesses of various areas including

  1. theoretical understanding of module concepts
  2. Initiative and rigour of research skills
  3. Idiomatic and impact of musical application
  4. Presentation of commentary and scores
  5. Creativity and ambition of projects
  6. Critical reflection and evidence of awarness of, and contextualisation with, relevant compositional practice.
  7. Quality of audio realisations of works.


Feedback is given throughout the module, through compositional exercises, workshops and tutorials. Detailed feedback on the portfolio is given (with a breakdown of strengths and weaknesses) in order to enhance continuing compositional practice.

Module Hours

Lecture Hours:22

Reading List


Last Updated

03 October 2016 by GODFREY L Miss (Qual. Enh. & S)