Module Catalogue 2022/23

MUS2016 : DJing Skills and Turntablism

  • Offered for Year: 2022/23
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Mariam Rezaei
  • Lecturer: Dr Richard Elliott
  • Owning School: Arts & Cultures
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 2 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0
Pre Requisites
Pre Requisite Comment

Students wishing to take the module must write a short justification for why they wish to take the module based on their current and previous musical practice and listening, alongside their broader studies.

Co Requisites
Co Requisite Comment



To successfully deliver several ‘live recording‘ DJ mixes with various equipment and varying criteria.
To successfully compose for turntables, as a soloist and in a small group.

Outline Of Syllabus

A split of lectures and practical workshops focusing on the history of DJ Mixing with progression in to Turntablism.
The lectures will include group analysis, music theory and compositional experiments. Practical workshops will include working solo and as groups. Tasks set clearly each week with dedicated studio and time needed for each student to fulfil work aims for the following week.
The course will provide a theoretically correct and up to date learning of DJing in a professional context, where students will make several mixes with practical applications and learn to perform and compose experimental turntablist works.

Learning Outcomes

Intended Knowledge Outcomes

- Intricate understanding of the history of DJing and style of mixing through different genres/decades, technology, performances, repertoire and literature.
- Demonstrative knowledge of applied Djing mixing techniques, through Vinyl and Digital Djing, advancing listening and compositional skills through analysis, practice and reflective and reflexive composition.
- Historical knowledge of Djing techniques, further developed through applied frameworks of processes in improvisation and composition to further experimentation for individuals to develop unique musical identities and characters.
- An in-depth knowledge of the history of Turntablism (both hip hop and experimental/punk histories) in view of cultural, musical, technical and studio based practices.
- Applied knowledge of compositional techniques and forms in Turntablism through solo and group discussions, research and practical demonstrations.

Intended Skill Outcomes

-       To make a vinyl only mix (20 mins)
-       To make a Digital Vinyl / CDJ / Digital ‘quick mix’ (10 mins)
-       To make a longer beat-matched mix (30 mins)
-       To make an experimental mix (30 mins)

To compose and perform
-       1 x 60 second instrumental skratch routine
-       2 x 60 second solo scratch routines
-       2 x 60 second battle routines in a battle/competition scenario
-       2 x 60 second beat juggle routines
-       1 x collaborative team routine 3 minutes.

2 x Reflective logs (1000 words) referencing and reflecting on compositional processes.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture111:0011:00Needs AV support.
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading116:0066:00Preparation and research for practical work
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching122:0024:00Needs to be in studio with DJ equipment
Guided Independent StudySkills practice119:0099:00Needs to be in studio with DJ equipment or home equipment
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

The teaching methods reflect the fact that DJing is a practical skill that requires hands-on tuition. Teaching is a combination of small groups and one to one tutoring. Students are expected to undertake short weekly practice sessions, which they will be able to do in the dedicated DJ Studio space.
Lectures provide essential historical, social, technological and professional context to the practical sessions.

Reading Lists

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Reflective log2A202 reflective logs, 1000 words each
Design/Creative proj2A4090 minutes combined of mixed music through 4 different DJ mixes
Practical/lab report2A4015 minute performance
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The reflective log tests students' awareness of their developing skills and enables them to place their practice in a professional context. The exam tests the practical skills developed during the module in a manner comparable to recitals on other performance modules.
The creative project gives participants the opportunity to demonstrate their understanding whilst applying creativity through practical means.


Past Exam Papers

General Notes

Technician support is needed prior to semester 1, with the set up of a dedicated DJ space for this module ( as per 2019-2020). This has been agreed in principle with the Music Technicians.
The module can only run when the music technicians are present in the music studios for technical support, so the sessions must be timetabled for after 10am (when the music technicians begin work) for this reason.
The evaluation of the turntablism elements - the practical/lab report (15 mins) needs to be a filmed performance, that will have a supporting 1000 word reflective log.
The work cannot be marked anonymously as this is a specialist subject that the module leader and support staff will be involved in, marking in the live performances.

Resit requirements can be recorded video performances of the students performing in the university music department.

Disclaimer: The information contained within the Module Catalogue relates to the 2022/23 academic year. In accordance with University Terms and Conditions, the University makes all reasonable efforts to deliver the modules as described. Modules may be amended on an annual basis to take account of changing staff expertise, developments in the discipline, the requirements of external bodies and partners, and student feedback. Module information for the 2023/24 entry will be published here in early-April 2023. Queries about information in the Module Catalogue should in the first instance be addressed to your School Office.