Music and History (BA)
This joint honours degree programme enables students to combine the study of the popular subjects of Music and History
Many students find joint honours both stimulating and rewarding for the similarities and differences they encounter between the two subjects. Often there are complementary issues and perspectives as well as skills that link the subjects, be they critical analysis, historical contexts or the ability to experience and contribute to cutting–edge of research.
You will spend a similar amount of time on each subject, developing your music understanding and skills and pursuing a range of enquiries in different historical periods and topics.
The School of Music and the School of History, Archaeology and Religion offer challenging and fascinating suites of modules in their respective subject areas. The flexibility of the course allows you to specialise and develop your own interests, while acquiring a solid, broad-based education and developing transferable skills.
Home to the arts, Cardiff is a great location for the study of music and history in the UK. The city has a professional opera company, Welsh National Opera, and a professional symphony orchestra, the BBC National Orchestra of Wales. The School of Music enjoys a fruitful relationship with both organisations that allows, for instance, students to attend dress rehearsals and buy cut-price tickets for concerts.
The University has a superb historical research collection and historical sites in the city include Cardiff Castle and the resources of the National Museum.
You are expected to have gained or shown evidence of working towards Grade 8 in one or more instruments or voice at the time of your application. You may be considered if you are not taking A-level Music but have (or are working towards) Grade 7/8 Theory and are studying appropriate Humanities subjects at A-level.
- This course is especially suited to those interested in seeing music within a broad cultural context, embracing the literary, the social, the historical and the political
- There are no compulsory modules in either discipline
- Your optional third year dissertation may draw on both disciplines
- Instrumental tuition is fully funded by the School of Music on your principal study instrument if you are taking a Practical Musicianship module
- Business of Music modules offer a short work placement
- Composition workshops, performance masterclasses, the University concert series, the John Bird lectures presented by visiting academics and the careers talks provides many opportunities for contact with active music professionals
|Next intake||September 2018|
|Typical places available||The School of Music typically has 70 places available, the School of History, Archaeology and Religion typically has 320 places available.|
|Typical applications received||The School of Music typically receives 350 applications, the School of History, Archaeology and Religion typically receives 1800 applications.|
|Typical A level offer||ABB including History and Music. Please note, General Studies will not be accepted. Please also see ‘Other requirements’ below.|
|Typical Welsh Baccalaureate offer||The Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate will be accepted in lieu of one A-Level (at the grades listed above), excluding any specified subjects. Please also see ‘Other requirements’ below.|
|Typical International Baccalaureate offer||34 points, to include 6 in HL Music and 6 in HL History. Please also see ‘Other requirements’ below.|
|Alternative qualifications||Alternative qualifications may be accepted. For further information on entry requirements, see the School of Music and School of History, Archaeology & Religion admissions criteria pages.|
|English Language requirements||If you are an overseas applicant and your first language is not English, please visit our English Language requirements page for more information on our accepted qualifications.|
|Other requirements||You will be required to have GCSE Maths at grade C or grade 4 and GCSE English or Welsh Language at grade C or grade 4. You will also need to have obtained or be working towards Grade 8 Music Practical in an instrument/voice.|
This is a three-year full-time degree, consisting of 120 credits a year, split between the two Schools. Most modules in Music are worth 10 or 20 credits; those in Years 2 & 3 History are weighted at 30 credits.
The modules shown are an example of the typical curriculum and will be reviewed prior to the 2018/19 academic year. The final modules will be published by September 2018.
You will take 60 credits in Music and 60 credits in History.
In Music, year one provides the foundations for you to take advantage of the creative and intellectual benefits of higher education. You will receive instruction in analysis, harmony and counterpoint, history of music, composition and practical musicianship. The History side of your degree will comprise three survey modules designed to introduce you to broad periods and historical subjects, from the medieval world to the modern Far East.
Note that some Music modules are ‘prerequisites’, providing essential preparation for more advanced modules if you wish to pursue them in later years.
To complement your academic study, you are actively encouraged to join the University Choir or Orchestra and other ensembles.
|Module title||Module code||Credits|
|History in Practice Part 1: Questions, Frameworks and Audiences.||HS1119||20 credits|
|Module title||Module code||Credits|
|The Making of The Modern World, 1750-1970||HS1105||20 credits|
|Early Modern England and Wales, 1500-1700||HS1106||20 credits|
|Making Global Histories: Asia and the West||HS1108||20 credits|
|Inventing a Nation: Politics, Culture and Heritage||HS1109||20 credits|
|Medieval Worlds, AD 500 -1500||HS1112||20 credits|
|Composition 1A||MU1107||10 credits|
|Ethnomusicology 1: Music in Human Life||MU1124||10 credits|
|Elements of Tonal Music 1||MU1125||20 credits|
|The Full Works||MU1127||10 credits|
|Composition 1B||MU1208||10 credits|
|A History of Popular Music||MU1226||10 credits|
|Elements of Tonal Music 2||MU1227||20 credits|
|From Page to Stage: Dramaturgy in Musical Theatre||MU1230||10 credits|
|Composing the Landscape||MU1231||10 credits|
|Practical Musicianship 1||MU1314||10 credits|
|Repertoire Studies||MU1317||20 credits|
You will take 60 credits in Music and 60 credits in History.
In Music, courses are more advanced and you will focus on more specialist topics, choosing from four groups: Composition and Electroacoustic Studies, Written and Practical Musicianship, Analytical and Critical Skills, and Historical Studies.
Our year two modules on the Business of Music I/II are designed to help you better understand different branches of the music profession and give an opportunity for a short placement in an area related to music or the arts, either in one block or as a series of regular workplace visits.
In History your courses become more chronologically focused with particular subject areas that build on the survey modules of Year 1.
You will take 60 credits in History and 60 credits in Music.
In Music, you choose again from the four subject groups, and can pursue one of the three major academic projects: Dissertation, Project in Ethnomusicology, or Project in Music Analysis.
You may complete a short composition portfolio (Composition IV) and/or an ‘open’ recital in front of examiners and an invited audience (Practical Musicianship IV).
History modules in the final year place considerable emphasis on working with primary documents. These are often unique materials uncovered during your lecturers’ researches. From these foundations students are encouraged to build complex historical interpretations, and to challenge received ideas and accounts in their chosen field of study.
The option in both subjects to write a dissertation lets you choose a topic that draws on both disciplines, if you wish.
How will I be taught?
In Music, you will be taught by academic staff with expertise across composition, performance, musicology, ethnomusicology, and popular music.
Instrumental tuition is fully funded by the School on your principal study instrument if you are taking a Practical Musicianship module. This includes accompaniment at your final recital. You will receive 24 half-hour lessons over the course of the year.
We use a range of teaching and learning styles, including lectures, small-group seminars and workshops, individual tutorials, ensemble instrumental tuition, rehearsals and independent study.
History modules are delivered through a mixture of lectures, seminars, classes, document workshops and individual tutorials. Students also undertake independent study and research, under the guidance of a supervisor.
How will I be supported?
For both subjects at the start of each year you will be given a guide to module aims, learning outcomes, methods of assessment, module syllabuses, and reading and listening lists. Your allocated personal tutor will be able to provide advice and guidance on module choices and you will have regular meetings with them.
You will have a personal tutor in both the School of Music and the School of History, Archaeology and Religion.
For the final-year projects you will have a supervisor to monitor progress and provide individual consultations by arrangement.
You will have access through the Learning Central website to relevant multimedia material, presentations, lecture handouts, bibliographies, further links, electronic exercises and discussion circles.
The University offers a range of services including the Careers Service, the Counselling Service, the Disability and Dyslexia Service, the Student Support Service, and excellent libraries and resource centres.
How will I be assessed?
Methods of assessment vary from module to module and may include essay assignments, presentations, extended projects, performances, and written exams.
What skills will I practise and develop?
You will acquire and develop a range of valuable skills, both discipline specific and more generic ‘employability skills’, such as:
- asking the right questions of complex texts
- identifying and applying relevant data
- critical skills (reasoning, evaluating evidence, problem-solving, relating theory to practice)
- oral and written communication skills
- coping with uncertainty/complexity
- creativity and innovative thinking
- computer literacy
- leadership, teamwork and self-management
- identifying, recording and communicating your relevant career attainments
School of Music
In 2015/16, 95% of the School of Music’s graduates who were available for work reported they were in employment and/or further study within six months of graduation.
The skills developed within a music degree help our students to progress to a wide range of careers, both within and beyond the music profession. Employability skills are embedded in modules at the School of Music so that you will learn both music-specific and academic skills that are transferable to other domains, especially the workplace. Our annual series of talks on Careers in Music offer a great chance to meet professionals active in a range of fields such as performance, music education, music journalism, arts and artist management, production and licensing, and composing for media.
School of History, Archaeology and Religion
In 2013/14, 94% of the School's graduates who were available for work reported they were in employment and/or further study within six months of graduation.
We believe in giving its graduates the best opportunities to find employment. We organise interactive workshops with the Careers Service to help students identify their skills and attributes and have our own, in-School Workplace Placements and employability officer. Some of our graduates enter professions which make direct use of their academic expertise. The majority however compete very successfully in a wide range of other fields
UK and EU students (2018/19)
The University reserves the right to increase tuition fees in the second and subsequent years of a course as permitted by law or Welsh Government policy. Where applicable we will notify you of any change in tuition fee by the end of June in the academic year before the one in which the fee will increase.
Visit our tuition fee pages for the latest information.
Financial support may be available to individuals who meet certain criteria. For more information visit our funding section. Please note that these sources of financial support are limited and therefore not everyone who meets the criteria are guaranteed to receive the support.
Students from outside the EU (2018/19)
Tuition fees for international students are fixed for the majority of three year undergraduate courses. This means the price you pay in year one will be the same in years two and three. Some courses are exempt, including four and five year programmes and Medical and Dental courses. Visit our tuition fee pages for the latest information.
Will I need any specific equipment to study this course/programme?
Other than your principal study instrument, you will not need any specific equipment.
We have a range of residences to suit your needs and budget. Find out more on our accommodation pages.
Year two modules on the Business of Music I/II give an opportunity for a short placement, either in one block or as a series of regular workplace visits.