Music Degree at Northbrook College
Where passion meets practice

BA (Hons) Music Business & Management

Grow your creative network with our music community on campus.

UCAS code: N190
Duration: 3 years full-time

Entry requirements: 2 A-Levels and 3 GCSEs in other subjects grade 9-4 or A-C (or equivalent) plus a portfolio of work or audition to demonstrate ability in the specialist area.
1 A-Level, a Foundation course (or equivalent) and 3 GCSEs in other subjects grade 9-4 or A-C (or equivalent) plus a portfolio of work or audition to demonstrate ability in the specialist area.
English requirements: Applicants who have English as a second language and do not have a GCSE in English will be asked to present an IELTS UKVI certificate or equivalent as part of their offer conditions. They will need to achieve an overall score of 6.0, with 6.0 in the writing element and 5.5 in all other sub-elements.
Tuition Fee: £16,500

The assessment of your application will include a review of your grades, interview, portfolio/audition and any experience.

UAL music productionCourse Information

Course Content

Course Content

This Degree is designed and taught by Music Industry Professionals, who continue to practice as well as teaching at the college. They are supported by weekly visits and a mentoring scheme with Industry figures, who are chosen from all sides and levels of the Music Industry.

Using more than twenty years of experience running Degrees across a range of Music disciplines, and synthesising feedback from students, music industry practitioners and employers, this Course has been written holistically from the ground up, as a coherent Music Business Course, in which important business concepts are learned and practised, alongside ethical and artistic considerations, always referencing current and developing Music Industry practices.

Be a part of the vibrant and diverse music community on campus and immerse yourself in the South Coast music scene. Your classes and project work will occur in our music business hub inside our extensive, state-of-the-art studio complex, providing a dynamic music ecosystem for learning and work experience opportunities.

Teaching Method

Teaching Method:

We use a variety of teaching methods, including: 

  • practical and creative studio-based workshops
  • discussions
  • lectures/seminars
  • tutorials
  • small group study
  • self-directed study
  • study trips

Key Features

Key Features

  • Regular visits from current music industry experts.
  • Opportunities to collaborate with fellow students from a range of creative disciplines.
  • Undertake work experience, event planning, and build your music industry network (subject to student visa regulations).

Course Structure

Year One

Unit 1

Unit 1: Music Law

You will learn how the Law operates within the Music Industry; using the knowledge derived from your research, you will begin to develop ideas about your professional direction and profile and make effective legal and business decisions.

  • Structure of UK Law, US Law, EU Law
  • Legal entities, Legal Persons
  • Criminal v Civil Law
  • Tort, Civil Wrongs and Liability
  • Remedies: Letters to Small Claims to Crown Court
  • Intellectual Property: Copyright & Trademarks, composers/ performers’/ producers’ rights Defamation, Libel and Slander
  • Contracts: band agreements, management, record label and publishing deals and disputes: Health & Safety, Duty of Care
  • Tax law

Unit 2

Unit 2: Artist Development

This unit will develop your knowledge, confidence and skills in the area of Artist Development, whether you aim to be a performer, a producer, a creator, or to promote or manage some or all of the above.

The unit will include:

  • The First Year of your Course gives you opportunities for Songwriting, track creation, composition, and arrangement.
  • The music business context: labels, publishers, management, DIY
  • Establishing our creative community.
  • Working independently in the creation of new repertoire.
  • Collaboration in the creation of new repertoire.
  • Team building for artists, producers, performers and managers.
  • Well-being and Mental Health for music practitioners.
  • Development of a personal voice, and musical language.
  • Establishing an artist brand.
  • Identifying gaps in skills and knowledge and planning effectively to fill those gaps.
  • Instrumental technique lessons.
  • Musical direction.
  • Performance skills - stage presence, dynamics, timbre, tone, control of sound, interaction with/sensitivity to other performers, professionalism.

Unit 3

Unit 3: Ideas in Context: Why Music Matters

This unit encourages you to critically reflect on the desired effect of your practice

  • Situating your thinking: Your practice in the world.
  • Investigative methods using textual analysis, discourse analysis, participant observations, archived and published sources.
  • Critical/creative thinking.
  • Critical theory.
  • Writing and presentation methods and techniques, foundations in academic writing practices, and Pecha Kucha presentations.

Unit 4

Unit 4: Commercial Music

Having explored the legal frameworks of Music and related Creative Industries in Unit 1, you now approach the commercial realities inside and outside of the Music Industry.

  • Business basics: Organisations, Roles, practices
  • Finance, money, industry structure, income sources inside and outside of Music.
  • Locating audiences, building fan bases, joining and using trade bodies
  • Marketing, Distribution, and Pricing in Music
  • Audience analysis and Demographic segmentation
  • Product types in Music
  • Competition analysis
  • Derivation of USPs
  • Promotion and Advertising
  • Promotion Budgets
  • Marketing approaches and the need for specific goals
  • Assessment: Music Marketing Plan

Unit 5

Unit 5: Event Management

The aims of this Unit are:

  • Develop an understanding of the key principles of Event Management
  • Promote skills that allow you to work effectively and safely on a variety of roles within the events sector.
    • The infrastructure: the UK network of venues, festivals, promoters, agents and alternatives Regulation: H&S, security issues
    • The market: Finding, motivating, meeting, enlarging, sustaining audiences/fanbase for music events
    • Genres
    • Budgeting and funding: Ticketing

You will assist in putting on events, putting on your own events, visiting events, evaluating events and presenting your findings and achievements in a portfolio at the end of the unit.

Unit 6

Unit 6: Music Project

This unit is an opportunity for you to create original work focused on your area of interest and apply skills learned in the first year. You'll work on individual or team projects, responding to given themes and focusing on music content. Workshops will support your thematic development and help you develop new skills. You'll showcase your abilities and explore your relationship with audiences and consumers.

The outcome of the project is the result of your enquiry and negotiation and may be demonstrated by:

  • A portfolio of recordings.
  • Live public performance or event.
  • Recorded performance.
  • Music product or artefact.
  • Content for broadcast or online media.
  • Strategy or planning that proposes a future event.
  • Planning and presentation informed by entrepreneurial intentions.

Year Two

Unit 7

Unit 7: Music Business Budgeting, Planning and Funding

Building on your learning and experience of projects at Level 4, this Level 5 unit brings the opportunity to work with business practicalities of budgeting, planning and funding music-based projects.
You will study business and financial principles, and be introduced to tools and strategies for planning, funding, operating and controlling a successful music business.
This unit will provide you with a sound understanding of business planning and funding within the context of music and sound. The unit also encourages the development of entrepreneurship skills which complement those gained in the Industry/Collaborative Project and the Live Project 2.
You will develop skills and qualities required for a wide range of vocations, whether working freelance, starting up new companies, or gaining employment in established music companies.
This unit is concerned with the application of concepts and principles gained in units such as Music Law, and Commercial Music and Event Management. You will formulate your business plan within the music and sound industries.
You have the opportunity to gain a range of business, marketing, technical, collaborative, creative and interpersonal skills in the exercise of establishing a new business. This requires an analysis of existing business models and routes to market, together with possibilities for new businesses. Various methods of funding and their respective implications on business ownership and direction will be investigated and evaluated.
You will develop and hone skills applicable to all vocational areas where planning and raising funds are concerned, such as artist management, starting up music and sound businesses, production companies, studios, sound systems, promotions companies etc.

Unit 8

Unit 8: Innovation

This unit will develop your knowledge, confidence, and skills in the area of Artist Development, whether you aim to be a performer, a producer, a creator, or to promote or manage some or all of the above.

  • Explore concepts of fast failure, incremental innovation and radical progress
  • Utilise strategies to gain knowledge of how innovation moves the industry forwards
  • Explore the uses of innovative strategies in developing originality and uniqueness in sound, songwriting and marketing
  • Incorporate immersive audio/ binaural/ 5.1 mixing or recording techniques into a production
  • Investigate the AirPods Pro details to see how they work with spatial audio.
  • Online Collaboration using new collaborative software techniques
  • Use controllers to input musical information in a production - push, Launchpad etc.
  • Create a song using an innovative methodology/technology - e.g. non-grid/chance/accidents
  • Explore and incorporate unusual spaces, resonance, microtonal instruments, just intonation

Unit 9

Unit 9: Industry Briefs

  • Identifying, recognising and negotiating opportunities for music work.
  • Forming and recruiting teams, managing roles in music teams.
  • Setting common goals and objectives, assessing the plausibility of outcomes.
  • Briefing teams.
  • Production management and production schedules in music.
  • Case studies of key music creators, performers, producers and entrepreneurs; vision, creativity and expansion.
  • Adjourning and exit strategies.
  • Risk, mistakes, failure and other learning opportunities in composition, performance, production and business; improvisation, agility and entrepreneurship.
  • Music in society: intrapreneurship and social entrepreneurship, ethics and responsibility.

Unit 10

Unit 10: Ideas in Context: Musicking

Situating your thinking: What you bring to your practice.
You are encouraged to attune your listening, thinking, reading and writing skills so that a range of subjects can be thoughtfully considered and debated. The unit aims to situate your thinking by:

  • Exploring the key concepts associated with musical contexts including performance, reception, politics, values, histories, place, migration etc.
  • Diversifying your knowledge of scholarly work, creative ideas and critical thinking skills. A process of specialisation will occur; you will amass your own ‘research library’, building on areas that particularly pique your interest.
  • Encouraging you to identify, explore and interrogate your subjective position through an ongoing process of researching, debating, reading, and writing.
  • Facilitating and promoting ongoing discussions on the study of music /theatre in relation to culture, as part of culture and as culture itself.

Unit 11

Unit 11: Individual Project

This unit will provide you with the opportunity to expand areas, themes, opportunities, applications and locations for your developing practice. The project provides an opportunity for you to experiment with your own and related disciplines, and to consider extending and applying them to the production of new, riskier and potentially more original work.
You will connect with others to expand your opportunities to present and create challenging and ambitious music, events, products, commercial ventures and propositions; with the view to further establishing an agile, sustainable and informed practice that may contribute to and perhaps influence cultural or commercial culture.
As your practice breaks new ground, you will be encouraged to locate and question its place, value and application and - at this midway point in the Course - challenge the expectations of markets, consumers and audiences. The unit encourages collaborative and interdisciplinary working to inform developing practices

Year Three

Unit 12

Unit 12: Collective Practice

Collective Practice provides the creative and practical space for students to develop and present refined, professional musical and commercial outcomes. Collaborative working provides an initial setting for students of all courses to engage in professional practice with peers or external networks, producing outcomes such as events, music releases, films, games, programmes, performances, and festivals.
You are given space to plan and execute work with peers from your own disciplines, or from related or unrelated disciplines. You are encouraged to respond or reach out to external practitioners, curators, promoters, venues, festivals, and channels; to collaborate with, or be commissioned by these external entities to create, produce, and perform in familiar genres and formats, or in new, developing or unfamiliar formats. These collaborations may be short-term, one-off groupings and creative alliances, or they may prove to be the foundation of longer-term, structured and regular meetings of creatives and the teams that support your work. In either case, your contribution to these collaborations should extend and demonstrate your artistic, commercial and technical potential as you move from undergraduate level toward graduate, professional, self-directed practitioner status.

Unit 13

Unit 13: Music Dissertation

The dissertation is an investigation and critical discourse on your negotiated choice of a topic relevant to your course of study. Your dissertation on your chosen topic is assessed on submission of a written document or an oral presentation.

  • Investigative methods using textual analysis, discourse analysis, practice-as research, autoethnography, archived and published sources.
  • Critical/creative thinking.
  • Critical theory.
  • Advanced writing and presentation methods and techniques

Unit 14

Unit 14: Professional Practice

You will:

  • conduct a skills audit.
  • build a network of professional contacts.
  • plan effectively for your progression from this course.
  • pursue specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and timely career goals in industry, public sector, education or elsewhere.
  • seek commissions, sales, contracts or promotional avenues for your own musical service or product that improve your employability and investability.
  • you will evaluate the effectiveness of your actions.
  • you will evaluate the terms and conditions of any agreements that you have managed to secure or are considering.

Unit 15

Unit 15: Individual Project

You are given the creative space to make significant statements that locate your own practice in a wide cultural, commercial or specialist discipline practice.
The Individual Project requires you to propose, sustain and present a body of creative or commercial endeavours, with resolved outcomes.
You have the opportunity to build on work developed at the start of L6 or to pursue an individual path.
You will propose and pursue an individual project brief and production plan in negotiation with your project supervisor.
You will design and deliver a project which you ‘own’, and for which you have primary responsibility. It should reflect your career aspirations. You will plan, manage, recruit for, deliver, evaluate and benefit from your project.
The nature of your project will be appropriate to and enhance your professional development.




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