Develop and establish yourself as a music technician through our accredited Music Technology degree. This course is aimed toward the technical music producer, skilfully training you in the use of technology to create, record and distribute music. We will challenge you, providing you with industry connections, live projects and a wide, in-depth knowledge of the field.
You’ll leave with a valuable blend of creative ability and practical skills in music production, alongside solid business awareness and a strong understanding of technology.
Our BSc (Hons) Music Technology was set up in order to meet the growing demand for people within the music and audio industries who are able to use technology to assist in the creation, performance and distribution of music.
We will train you to become the next generation of musically-informed engineers, with a strong understanding of underlying technical principles in order to make informed decisions about appropriate technologies.
You will analyse and critically evaluate live musical events and sound recordings, as well as music technology products, systems, processes and designs.
We will challenge you, providing you with industry connections, live projects and a wide, in-depth knowledge of the field. You’ll leave with a valuable blend of creative ability and practical skills in music production, alongside solid business awareness and a strong understanding of technology.
Exploring a wealth of creative ideas and techniques, we will encourage you to think innovatively and respond to the needs of industry. Employability is a key factor incorporated within the course, and we are dedicated to providing you with the skills and knowledge to jump right into a creative role.
"It's a wonderful job - quite honestly something I never thought I would be doing at this stage - and I get to work with some fantastic people, see plenty of movies, binge on Pro Tools and meet celebrities!"Jason Rosehill, audio/visual producer for a film PR company
“The pool of lecturers is great at Birmingham City University and the knowledge from their previous industry experience is fantastic. The studios are great quality and with all new facilities it’s a great time to join.’’ Ben Parker, Promotions Executive at EMI Production Music
“The course gave me the opportunity to really hone my skills in recording live orchestras and more classical musicians than I would otherwise have had the opportunity to do.” Alastair Jamieson, owner / producer at Park Studios JQ, Birmingham.
Our next University-wide Open Day will take place on Saturday 17 June 2017. Come along to find out more about our courses and see our facilities.
To welcome all new home and EU undergraduate students starting in 2017 or 2018, we're giving at least £150 worth of credit to spend in a host of ways, on books and a range of learning materials. Even better, it doesn’t have to be repaid.
Visit our School site for more student work and extra information.
Our students have gone on to work with companies such as:
We accept a range of qualifications, the most popular of which are detailed below.
At the point of application, you must have GCSE at Grade C or above in English Language and Mathematics.Equivalent qualifications will be accepted.
You must have GCSE Music at grade C or above, Music Theory grade 5, or proficiency of performance on one instrument equivalent to ABRSM or RockSchool Grade 5.
120 UCAS tariff points from A/AS Level with a minimum of 2 A Levels
|UK Qualification||Requirements 2016/17|
|GCE A Level/ AS Level||BBB at A Level or 120 UCAS tariff points from A/AS Level with a minimum of 2 A Levels including at least one from a Science, Technology, Mathematics or Computing subject.|
|Access to Higher Education Diploma||Pass overall with 60 credits, 45 at Level 3 and 15 at Level 2, including with a minimum of 12 credits achieved from any Technology units awarded at Merit or Distinction|
|BTEC National Diploma (12-units not including early years)||Combined with other level 3 qualifications to achieve a minimum total of 120 UCAS points|
|BTEC Extended Diploma (18-units not including early years)||DDM grades. Computing/Engineering is preferred.|
|BTEC Subsidiary Diploma/ National Award (6-units not including early years)||Combined with other level 3 qualifications to achieve a minimum total of 120 UCAS points|
|International Baccalaureate Diploma||
1. For students who complete the full IB Diploma: a total of 14 points or above from three Higher Level Subjects.
2. Students who do not complete the IB Diploma will be considered on the basis of their IB Certificates.
Students must have grade 5 in Maths (Standard Level)
|Irish Leaving Certificate||B2,B2,B3,B3,B3 Must be from Technology, Science, or Computing related subjects|
|Scottish Higher/ Advanced Higher||BBC Must be from Technology, Science, or Computing related subjects|
|Welsh Baccalaureate (core plus options)||120 tariff points combined with other level 3 qualifications to achieve a minimum total of 120 UCAS points|
|If you have a qualification that is not listed in the table please refer to our full entry requirements on UCAS.
Further guidance on tariff points can be found on the UCAS website.
|EU/Non-EU (International) Qualifications||Requirements 2017/18|
|IELTS||6.0 overall with 5.5 minimum in all bands|
|International Baccalaureate Diploma (or equivalent, including internationally accredited Foundation courses).||
1. For students who complete the full IB Diploma: a total of 14 points or above from three Higher Level Subjects.
2. Students who do not complete the IB Diploma will be considered on the basis of their IB Certificates.
Students must have grade 5 in Maths (Standard Level)
International students who cannot meet the direct entry requirements can begin their degree studies at Birmingham City University International College (BCUIC).
As part of the application process you will be invited to attend an applicant visit day where you will undertake a short one-to-one interview with an academic member of staff. This is your chance to show us how passionate you are about the subject and it will help us make a decision on your application.
This will provide you with more information about the Faculty and your course. In addition, it will give you a chance to meet and our staff and students to gain a better understanding of what it is like to be a student here.
From A/AS Level with a minimum of 2 A Levels
|BSc (Hons)||Sep 2017||FT||3 years||£9,250 per year||Apply via UCAS|
|BSc (Hons)||Sep 2017||SW||4 years||£9,250 per year (excluding sandwich year)||Apply via UCAS|
|BSc (Hons)||Sep 2017||FT||3 years||£12,000 per year||Apply via UCAS|
The University reserves the right to increase fees broadly in line with increases in inflation, or to reflect changes in government funding policies or changes agreed by Parliament.
UK and EU students applying for most undergraduate degree courses in the UK will need to apply through UCAS.
The Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) is a UK organisation responsible for managing applications to university and college.
There are three ways to apply:
You will need to complete our International Application Form and submit it together with scan copies of your original academic transcripts and certificates.
Our in-country representatives can help you make your application and apply for a visa. They can also offer advice on travel, living in the UK and studying abroad.
If you are applying for an undergraduate degree or a Higher National Diploma (HND), you can apply through the UK’s Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS).
You can request a printed form from your school or nearest British Council office. You will be charged for applying through UCAS. Birmingham City University’s UCAS code is B25 BCITY.
UK / EU students are required to submit a personal statement as part of their application for this course.*
The personal statement gives you a crucial opportunity to say why you’re applying and why the institution should accept you.
Here are the key areas you’ll need to address:
Why does this course appeal? What areas are of particular interest?
If you have a specific career in mind, say how your chosen course will help you pursue this goal.
Mention any work that is relevant to your subject, highlighting the skills and experience gained.
Highlight skills gained at school/college, eg summer schools or mentoring activities.
eg Duke of Edinburgh Award, Young Enterprise scheme.
You should also mention your future plans – if you’re planning to take a year out, don't forget to give your reasons. Talk about any subjects you’re studying that don’t have a formal assessment and any sponsorships or placements you’ve applied for. And don't be scared to add in details about your social, sports or leisure interests.
Get more information on writing personal statements.
*Non-EU students are not required to submit a personal statement when applying for this course.
There are no compulsory additional costs or charges associated with studying on this course. While you may choose to purchase personal copies of text books, all our key text books are available from our library or online (subject to normal library loan and online access arrangements). If your course includes a residential study session, the accommodation costs for this are already included in your course fee.
Based on the past experience of our students, you might find it helpful to set aside about £50 for each year of your studies for stationery and study materials. All our students are provided with 100 free pages of printing each year to a maximum total value of £15.
Search our Frequently Asked Questions for a range of information about our courses and studying here.
We offer further information on possible undergraduate financial support. This includes the type of loans, grants and scholarships available both from the government and from Birmingham City University.
An understanding of acoustics is fundamental to a wider appreciation of sound technology. In this module you will gain an understanding of the physics of sound and how this specifically has an impact on musical instrument design. The module will develop your understanding of acoustic fundamentals and you will also develop methodologies for testing a range of musical instruments, employing applicable techniques to extract and analyse data.
The scientific nature of this module will allow you to have a deeper understanding of sound, human hearing mechanisms and musical instruments, underpinning later modules in recording and acoustics.
The tutorials in this module provide will develop your practical understanding of musical instrument acoustics underpinned by theoretical knowledge of acoustic fundamentals. After the first three weeks of theory-based classes, the module moves to a flipped curriculum where you will support practical activities in class with reading of theoretical texts. This allows you to see and hear acoustics in practice, supporting your experience with deeper scientific knowledge.
This module provides a base for you to develop key skills in recording and mixing, imperative for all fields of music technology and sound engineering. You will become familiar with the hybrid analogue mixing/digital recording studio environment and explore recording techniques and processes applicable to a wide range of acoustic and electric instruments. You will study analogue-based audio systems and processes and microphone technology. You will apply this knowledge through a series of studio based recordings.
The coursework assignment will develop your basic skills in studio recording. You will apply knowledge of microphone technology whilst managing simple recording projects. You will also be required to produce reports that support, evaluate, contextualise and critique submitted artefacts. The studio environment also provides a valuable opportunity for students to build and develop a wide range of additional skills and behaviours, highly relevant to employers within the industry.
Digital Audio Fundamentals
To pursue a career in the field of either music technology or sound engineering, you will need to be proficient in the principles of digital audio.
Digital audio is embedded within the recording and production industry and the fundamental concepts of digital signals underpin many common applications essential to this fields.
In this module, you will learn about the nature of digital signals, the international standards for digital audio data and the common processes involved in the capture and processing of digital signals. Through the module you will develop strong skills in the standards for compression and distribution of digital audio signals and via a cross discipline approach. You will also discover common methods for computing and how valid these are for digital signal distribution.
You will also learn about the methods and international standards for analysis of digital signals via objective measures conducted within a laboratory environment, applying and exploring the international standards for perceptual audio measurement.
Skills from this module can be further applied within later studies in Digital Signal Processing (DSP), studio electronics, software development and research, thus providing you with transferable skills for employment in the wide field of music and sound technology.
Sequencing and Synthesis
This module provides a base for you to develop key skills in sequencing and synthesis, imperative for all fields of music technology and sound engineering. This foundation will be built upon in year two and three modules. Working with Digital Audio Workstation-based music applications and processing, especially with respect to MIDI programming and sequencing, you will gain experience of control systems and processes.
This module also explores synthesis systems. You will explore themes including software orientation, synthesis processes, the building of software-based synthesis modules and the development of production techniques.
This module is the first in the Music and Critical Studies theme of the degree programme. It provides the foundation for Music and Critical Studies in year two, as well as giving context to the Music Technology and Sound Recording theme of the degree. This module will help you to develop your musical awareness to give a context to recording work across a range of genres. The aural training work raises aural awareness, widening your musical appreciation, as well as providing a foundation for analysis of popular genres of music in year two.
You will have the opportunity to attend and review a range of concerts to develop interdisciplinary practice and support you to consider a full range of international styles, genres and artists.
This module will develop your understanding of electronic fundamentals as applied to audio systems. Subject matter relates primarily to the analogue domain and will encourage you to develop your passion for the equipment found in the studios, learn how they sound and what makes them important during the recording, mixing and mastering process. Specific attention is applied to audio transducers, loudspeakers, microphones and headphones. This module provides a foundation for you to develop audio hardware design-related final year projects, employment and work placements. The module explores an essential part of being a good studio or live sound engineer and also relates to high-end audio reproduction systems found in A/V theatre and hi-fi listening rooms.
Sampling, Editing and Production
This module will develop your skills in key applications. It provides the opportunity to explore sampling and editing to lay a foundation for recording and production work in the module which follows and advanced application of these techniques in year three.
You will record and edit sounds to make a library of related samples, using the recording techniques previously studied and the editing techniques explored in the module. You will then create a track demonstrating in a creative context the possibilities of the sample library that you have created.
Music and Critical Studies
This module allows you to develop musicological, aural and performance analysis to support recording and production work in year two and beyond.
The module develops the musical and critical study elements of year one Music and Critical Studies to give further context to your recording work. It also lays a foundation for the year three modules by encouraging the development of musical and critical appreciation across a range of genres. The aural training work raises aural awareness of direct production issues.
Music and Audio Industries
This module will allow you to gain an in-depth understanding of the global music and audio industries and how organisations have sought to adapt to technological change.
You will develop your appreciation of the global business environment through activities based on professional practice, supported by guest lectures and the opportunity for ongoing interaction with industry professionals via online forums.
Your skills in academic research and analysis will be enhanced through the sourcing, critical appraisal and integration of a range of credible secondary research material. These skills will underpin final year project based work.
This module will develop your understanding of psychoacoustics through critique and analysis of academic work. You will learn how to provide critical assessment of existing research work.
You will also gain a practical insight into acoustic consultancy by assessing through theory and practice. You will consider building, interior and environmental acoustics, utilising methods that are typical of industrial practice, developing skills that will be useful in your future career.
Through this module you will understand the factors involved in the development of a building project specifically from an acoustic standpoint, using calculation and testing to influence the final design.
Recording, Production and Delivery
This module enables you to develop an individual recording portfolio based on your personal areas of interest whilst acquiring core techniques and skills in key applications.
You will develop an appreciation of professional workflows alongside contextualisation and critical reflection, developing the skills you will need for a career in music production.
The module provides the opportunity to explore editing, mixing and a range of recording techniques to lay the foundations for more advanced recording and production work at level 6.
Digital Signal Processing
Digital technology is widely used throughout all stages of digital media processing, production, transmission, distribution and broadcasting activities. This module will provide you with application-based fundamental digital signal processing (DSP) knowledge and skills.
Multi-Channel Sound Production
In this module you will explore production strategies that move beyond 2-channel stereo in terms of both pure audio and applied sound for visual media.
The module is inherently interdisciplinary, providing an opportunity to design professional-standard music, Foley, dialogue and fx recording work whilst developing high-level skills in surround sound and editing audio to picture. This incorporates a range of skills crucial to potential employment in audio, film, game and VR-related industries.
New interfaces for Musical Expression
In this module, you will learn a variety of mapping and control strategies for interactive music systems including the use of machine learning, dimensionality reduction and signal processing. You will gain an overview of user experience and interaction design. You will cover the theoretical and practical aspects of controllers, interfaces and instruments for musical expression, and explore both hardware and software interface development. You will also learn about augmented and hyper-instrument design.
Through project-based activities, you will learn how to use sensors to gather data in real-time and map the features to musical parameters. You will explore the relationship between motion, gesture and music and discover new paradigms for music performance and installation.
Production and Mastering
This module provides an opportunity to develop professional-standard recording work within your personal area of interest, assimilating all the skills acquired through the Sound Recording theme of the degree. You will acquire high-level skills in key areas such as mastering to facilitate sophisticated recording and production work.
The coursework assessment gives you the opportunity to develop your own professional-level production projects, including a single-artist EP and work supplied to multiple formats. The ability to work in this way is crucial for international employability. It provides an opportunity to demonstrate professional-standard recording and production work that has followed through from concept to production master.
Digital Audio Effects
Digital Audio Effects (DAFx) continues from the Digital Signal Processing module in the previous year and will provide you with an applied understanding of the subject.
You will be given the chance to develop a range of audio processing techniques and will learn the basics of efficient real-time algorithm design. DAFx is a well-established area in audio engineering and provides you with the technical knowledge required to work in a wide range of disciplines. The module will cover linear and nonlinear systems, time and frequency domain processing algorithms, and will explore future generations of methods in the field such as adaptive, cross-adaptive and intelligent music production systems.
CEBE Undergraduate Project
The purpose of this module is to enable you to undertake a sustained, in-depth and theoretically informed project exploring an area that is of personal interest to you. In conjunction with your supervisor, you will decide upon your topic which will take the form of a practical outcome with accompanying contextual material. The main consideration when choosing your topic is that it must be relevant to the programme you are studying and you should consider the relevance of this topic to your future academic or professional development.
At this level, you will be expected to work independently but you will receive additional one-to-one support from your supervisor, who will be familiar with your chosen topic area. As you progress on the module, extra support will be available and this may take the form of group seminars, workshops and online materials that will help in the development of your project.
The course combines practical, hands-on training with theoretical and academic understanding, giving you a holistic conception of music technology. The course caters for students who are looking to broaden their career prospects across a range of music technology-related industries.
The course is accredited by the Institution of Engineering and Technology, ensuring it remains fresh and relevant, as well as boasting the best industry contacts.
If you are interested in undertaking part of your studies abroad, the Erasmus scheme may be of interest to you. It allows higher education students to study for part of their degree in another European country.
It is open to undergraduates in their second year (or above) and offers a unique opportunity to enhance your CV and experience new cultures. If you study with us you will have access to an Erasmus co-ordinator, who can provide information about which institutions we have links with.
The University has a range of either taught (MSc) or research (MPhil and PhD) postgraduate programmes. Details can be found on the postgraduate section of the website.
Your experience at Birmingham City University will ensure you’ll graduate as a creative problem solver, with significant experience of professional industry-standard hardware, software and systems. You will leave with a global outlook, well-primed to engage with the technical and aesthetic issues that will challenge the music and audio industries in the globalised and technologically mediated world ahead.
The Module Industrial Mentors scheme supports the enhancement of graduate employability through on-going engagement with industry specialists throughout the course. This initiative is based on facilitating interactions between students and individuals working across the music technology and audio sector via module-based forums. This innovative approach allows you to explore specific subject areas with experienced professionals working in the field.
Course : BSc (Hons) Music Technology
Audio/Visual Producer for a film PR company
"It's a wonderful job - quite honestly something I never thought I would be doing at this stage - and I get to work with some fantastic people, see plenty of movies, binge on Pro Tools and meet celebrities!"
The Music Technology course offers you the chance to take a ‘sandwich’ year, in which you can undertake an industrial placement. This industrial placement year will help you to build relationships with employers and further your industry knowledge. This takes place after the second year of study and extends the course duration to four years.
There are a wide range of potential placements that you may pursue such as working in recording studios, record companies, in professional audio and theatres. There are also various opportunities to pick up valuable work experience in areas such as live sound.
As well as providing relevant workplace experience that is sought by many employers, a placement provides an invaluable opportunity for you to develop your practical expertise, earn money and try out a potential career path. Our placements team will support you throughout the placements process; in the past students have undertaken placements at reputable companies such as Dolby UK, Focusrite and the Music Group.
Full details can be found on the School placements page.
Here is a short video showing the kind of work placement experience you could enjoy as part of your Music Technology degree:
OpportUNIty: Student Jobs on Campus ensures that our students are given a first opportunity to fill many part-time temporary positions within the University. This allows you to work while you study with us, fitting the job around your course commitments. By taking part in the scheme, you will gain valuable experiences and employability skills, enhancing your prospects in the job market.
It will also allow you to become more involved in University life by delivering, leading and supporting many aspects of the learning experience, from administration to research and mentoring roles.
Through our courses we give you the skills and experience needed to get a head start when applying for jobs. But we offer something extra too – Graduate+.
Our unique programme gives you the chance to develop valuable skills outside of the more formal classroom learning. We award points for Graduate+ activities (including firewalking!) and these can be put towards a final Graduate+ award.
Graduates of the BSc (Hons) Music Technology programme have successfully entered the music and audio industry across a wide range of destinations, from production, sound design and audio post, through to technical development, acoustic consultancy and education. Some have progressed to postgraduate study, doctoral and post-doctoral research and academic careers.
Typical roles undertaken by our graduates include assistant studio engineer, DSP engineer, music technician, junior audio designer, audio dubbing engineer and many more.
We are extremely proud of our graduates, who are now employed in companies such as More Radio Ltd and Soundcloud, taking on exciting roles such as systems producer and community manager. Other graduates from the school have gone onto work for companies including Universal Music, EMI Music and Dolby UK.
After attending an open day and undertaking a tour of the campus, Ben Parker decided to apply to study BSc (Hons) Music Technology at Birmingham City University. He now works in London as a Junior Promotions Executive at EMI Production Music, a subdivision of Sony/ATV Music Publishing.
Ewan Roycroft, a Music Technology (Bsc) student, was shortlisted in the 'Best Newcomer' category of The Student Radio Awards 2016. Ewan has had a huge impact at the University's Scratch Radio, setting up live broadcasts from Tamworth FC games and running the desk at BCUSU's weekly Open Mic night.
Birmingham City University is a vibrant and multicultural university in the heart of a modern and diverse city. We welcome many international students every year – there are currently students from more than 80 countries among our student community.
The University is conveniently placed, with Birmingham International Airport nearby and first-rate transport connections to London and the rest of the UK.
Our international pages contain a wealth of information for international students who are considering applying to study here, including:
Overseas students studying in the UK are happier and have a better learning experience compared to those studying in other countries.
The International Undergraduate Students: The UK's Competitive Advantage report asked 365,754 international students studying outside their home country to give their feedback on what it's like to study in this country. And the UK scored top in every aspect.
So if you're looking at studying with us, you'll be making a good choice.
Overall measures: ranked positions
International students who have a serious interest in studying with us but who perhaps cannot meet the direct entry requirements, academic or English, or who have been out of education for some time, can enter Birmingham City University International College (BCUIC) and begin their degree studies.
BCUIC is part of the global Navitas Group, an internationally recognised education provider, and the partnership allows students to access the University’s facilities and services and move seamlessly through to achieving a Bachelor’s degree from Birmingham City University.
Rishabh Agarwal is now a Sound Engineer at Famous Studios in Mumbai. He tells us how his course has helped him succeed in his career.
We are constantly investing in our estate and are currently in the process of spending £260 million on new learning facilities.
Here at Birmingham City University, the School of Computing and Digital Technology is equipped with a multitude of professional, dedicated equipment. With world-class facilities including: two film and television studios, four multi-track recording studios, post-production facilities, and several hundred multimedia stations.
We have cutting edge facilities available to support the course and research that goes on in the School, including the purpose-built Media Centre at The Parkside Building, DMT Lab and Cisco Academy at Millennium Point and Recording studios and concert halls at Birmingham Conservatoire. We also have several PC and Apple Mac computing suites with the latest industry standard applications and tools for audio, video and multimedia application development and content creation.
As a student of the School of Computing and Digital Technology you will be able to take advantage of a comprehensive range of state-of-the-art technology and equipment to prepare you for working within industry. Our four fully digital, interconnected TV studios can be used within a variety of contexts, including audio-recording. Alongside this with have several broadcast-standard edit and dubbing suites.
As the programme is taught in partnership with the Birmingham Conservatoire you will have access to a wide-range of musical facilities including six studios, a Recital Hall and the 520-seat auditorium Adrian Boult Hall. We have a range of studios, mix rooms, recording spaces and a vast range of recording equipment ready for you to use.
You will have access to four fully digital, interconnected TV studios, along with broadcast-standard edit and dubbing suites.
An Apple Mac sound lab, electronics and fully equipped multimedia labs are all part of the technology and multimedia experience on offer.
Facilities and partner venues at the Conservatoire including six studios, a Recital Hall and the 520-seat auditorium Adrian Boult Hall.
Discover the full range of studios, mix rooms, recording spaces and a vast range of recording equipment.
Ian is an Associate Professor in the Centre of Digital Media Technology (DMT) and the subject lead for image and video technology in the DMT Lab. He is an expert in image analysis, Mixed and Augmented Reality (MR/AR), image texture analysis, 3D image processing and user interaction.
Ian delivers internationally recognised research by leading the Image and Mixed Reality group within the DMT Lab, and as subject lead, directs the module content for the level 4 module on Digital Audio Technology, the level 6 module on Digital Image Processing, the level 7 module on Research methods and the MSc Digital Broadcast Technology Projects. Supplementary to this academic delivery, Ian supervises PhD research in many fields of digital media technology and at present he is Director of Studies for four PhD students, all researching in areas of mixed reality, multidimensional image processing and interactive systems.
Ian joined the University in 2008, following a career as a communications engineer for the UK railway network and after successfully completing his PhD in Medical Image Processing.
Ian currently acts on the scientific and technical committee for the IEEE international symposium on Mixed and Augmented reality and is a reviewer for several international conferences and journals including, IEEE Signal Processing Letters, International Journal of Optics, IET Journal of Image Processing and Elsevier Journal of Computer Vision and Image Understanding.
Jason Hockman joined Birmingham City University in 2015 as a Lecturer in audio processing with a specialisation in music informatics. He is an electronic music producer and record label owner that has studied the origins of the technology and culture that inspired him to become involved in the music he creates. Jason holds a BA in Sociology (Cornell University 2000), a Masters of Music (New York University 2007), and a PhD in Music Research (McGill University 2014).
Jason now conducts research in the fields of music information retrieval and computational musicology of electronic music, where he focuses on automated meter and rhythm description, as well as content-aware audio effects. As an electronic musician, Jason has had several critically-acclaimed releases on a variety of established international record labels including his own Detuned Transmissions imprint.
Own and operate internationally-distributed electronic music record label