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Popular Music and Culture
Postgraduate course
MA

Popular Music and Culture

Overview

Be part of a lively popular-music research community that embraces everything from metal music to film scores and work alongside performers, composers and studio producers.

You will join peers with backgrounds in cultural studies, sociology, music and the creative arts to explore today's local live music scene and its connection to the wider industry. From researching gigs and events to composing scores for film and television, you will discover how a variety of communities fuse together to create this vibrant and expanding scene.

Whether developing your songwriting and music editing techniques in our studios or organising events and liaising with artists at Leeds Festival, you will gain the hands-on experience employers are looking for while gathering evidence to carry through into your major research project.

With its combination of research and practice, your course provides the perfect springboard to discover the interconnectivity of popular music and culture and engage with the vibrant and varied music scene in Leeds.

As well as having access to modern, professional music studios, you will benefit from being taught by a highly-skilled and experienced teaching team, including Professor Karl Spracklen who is Secretary of the International Society for Metal Music Studies and the Editor of Metal Music Studies.

You will also have the chance to network with industry professionals during our guest lecture series. Previous speakers have included Leeds Festival boss Melvin Benn and chart-toppers Rudimental. We also have fantastic links with local and national music, arts and festival organisations, which help ensure you get the most from your course.

Artist in Residence Programme

The Artist in Residence programme gives our students an opportunity to work with professional artists and gives them a taste of what is it like to work on a professional music project. So far we have welcomed artists Chris T-T, Ian Prowse, I Monster, Tom Williams and Utah Saints.

Entry Requirements

Requirements:Applicants should either have at least a second class honours degree in the cognate subjects of Popular Music Studies, at least a second class honours degree in a non-cognate subject supported by evidence of an aptitude for the subject applied for, or have equivalent experience or training, normally from within the work environment.

All applications should be supported by a reference, either academic or professional; a template can be accessed at this link.

All applicants should satisfy our University English language requirements, please access further details at this link

IELTS:
IELTS 6.0 with no skills below 5.5, or an equivalent qualification. The University provides excellent support for any applicant who may be required to undertake additional English language courses.
Mature Applicants
Our University welcomes applications from mature applicants who demonstrate academic potential. We usually require some evidence of recent academic study, for example completion of an access course, however recent relevant work experience may also be considered. Please note that for some of our professional courses all applicants will need to meet the specified entry criteria and in these cases work experience cannot be considered in lieu.

If you wish to apply through this route you should refer to our University Recognition of Prior Learning policy that is available on our website.

Please note that all applicants to our University are required to meet our standard English language requirement of GCSE grade C or equivalent, variations to this will be listed on the individual course entry requirements.

Requirements:Applicants should either have at least a second class honours degree in the cognate subjects of Popular Music Studies, at least a second class honours degree in a non-cognate subject supported by evidence of an aptitude for the subject applied for, or have equivalent experience or training, normally from within the work environment.

All applications should be supported by a reference, either academic or professional; a template can be accessed at this link.

All applicants should satisfy our University English language requirements, please access further details at this link

IELTS:
IELTS 6.0 with no skills below 5.5, or an equivalent qualification. The University provides excellent support for any applicant who may be required to undertake additional English language courses.
Verify your qualifications
If you are an international student, we can help you to compare and verify your qualifications. Please contact our International Office on +44 (0)113 812 1111 09.00 to 17.00 Mon-Thurs / 09.00 to 16.30 Fri GMT or email internationaloffice@leedsbeckett.ac.uk.
Need to improve your English Language skills?
Don't worry if you don't have the level of English required for your chosen course. We offer a wide range of courses which have been designed to help you to improve your qualifications and English language ability, most of which are accredited by the British Council. Check your English and find out more about our English courses.


More questions?
No matter what your questions, we are here to answer them, visit our International website to get more information and find out about our online open days.

Careers

Florence Glen

Careers

Florence Glen
Freelance singer / songwriter

MA Music Production

“Throughout my course I've been inspired by guest lecturers and fellow students who have given me insights into areas of the music industry I'd never been exposed to before. I've since become involved in music for a video game thanks to one of my course mates opening my eyes to the possibility of working in that field. I'm also preparing to release an EP which I am working on with another producer.

Modules & learning

Download Course Spec Download

Examine the importance of popular music as a form of leisure and culture. You will explore music subcultures through sociology, cultural geography, cultural studies and leisure theory.

Develop an understanding of the strategies used in the study of popular music and culture, drawing on advanced approaches from sociology, musicology, cultural studies, ethnography, leisure and other relevant areas.

Examine performance, record production, video and reception and the meaning of music for your small scale, individual research project which focuses on the analysis of popular music artefacts.

Engage in debate and discussion of how, where and why certain strands of musical productivity and creativity remain constantly part of the vocabulary of popular music.

Combine your learning into a significant piece of work, the nature of which will be determined by yourself and the course team.

Produce a series of sound design projects and create your own systems for the purpose of manipulating/processing sound which will demonstrate your understanding of the concepts behind the tools used for sound design.

Develop a broad understanding of the creative possibilities of the studio environment by investigating a range of theoretical, technical, and creative approaches to the production process.

Develop a range of theoretical perspectives drawing on contemporary research into the ecology of the music industries and how different stakeholders across the music sector work together.

Investigate a host of contemporary issues affecting the practice of operating in the music industries, focusing on one key area determined by your own interests.

Dr Robert Davis
Dr Robert Davis
Senior Lecturer
Robert studied popular music at the Institute of Popular Music in Liverpool and completed his PhD at the University of Montréal. His research examines the sounds of music and musicological work. He is also interested in the study of sonic signatures in recorded music. Robert teaches on the MA in Music Production and MA Music for Moving Image and supervises a number of PhD students in fields of musical narrative, musical hooks in popular music and music for games.
I'm fascinated by the way music moves and engages us, bringing people together in studios, rehearsal rooms, pubs and venues around the world to create and listen to sound. I often wonder what causes an audience to spontaneously applaud or an individual to cry purely from the sound of a musician making music. It's a wide topic that really goes to the centre of who we are as people.
Play MA Popular Music & Culture - Dr Sue Miller, Senior Lecturer Video
MA Popular Music & Culture - Dr Sue Miller, Senior Lecturer
Play Students working with Tom Williams as part of the Artist in Residence programme Video
Students working with Tom Williams as part of the Artist in Residence programme
Play Postgraduate Study - Invest in yourself Video
Postgraduate Study - Invest in yourself

 

Fees & funding

Fees for this course are not yet confirmed.
Fees for this course are not yet confirmed.

Facilities

  • Headingley Campus
    Headingley Campus

    Our historic Headingley Campus is set in 100 acres of parkland with easy access to Leeds city centre.

  • Library
    Library

    Our Library is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, every day of the year, providing you with access to specialist books and journals, learning spaces, computers, multimedia facilities and media equipment hire. Tens of thousands of our Library's digital resources, including ebooks, ejournals and databases, can be accessed online at a time and place to suit you.

  • Gym and Sports Facilities
    Gym and Sports Facilities

    Keeping fit is easy at Leeds Beckett - our fitness suites are easy to get to, kitted out with all the latest technology and available to all sports members.

Map

Headingley Campus

Home to our first-rate sporting facilities – Headingley Campus has a rich and diverse history having played to visitors such as Winston Churchill and Oscar Wilde. Set in 100 acres of parkland, with easy access to Leeds city centre, many of our buildings look out onto our grassy acre – a perfect place for hanging out, playing games and catching up with friends on long summer days. Headingley Campus has modern sport science laboratories, animation and music studios and the latest computing labs, as well as one of our libraries, open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year.

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