MUS2041 : Approaches to Notated Contemporary Composition

Semester 1 Credit Value: 10
Semester 2 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 10.0


To explore the craft of musical composition through practical engagement with a range of methods and techniques selected from a plurality of repertoires.

To facilitate understanding of recent compositional trends through practice of their methods and techniques.

To encourage individual creativity.

To promote active engagement with a variety of recent creative approaches and styles.

To lay the foundations for further compositional study

To strengthen skills in music notation.

To explore issues of idiomatic writing for a variety of forces.

Outline Of Syllabus

This module will help you engage with a range of current techniques of composition, combining theoretical understanding with practical application. Each lecture will introduce a technique, resulting in an assignment that will be considered at the following seminar. Where possible completed assignments will be played or sung at the class by the students themselves. The use of Sibelius software will be required for at least part of the module

Typically topics could include techniques of rhythmic invention, world and contemporary modality, textural techniques and paraphrase. Models and paradigms could be taken from contemporary classical, world and British musics.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture82:0016:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading130:0030:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching81:008:00Tutorials
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching161:0016:00seminars
Guided Independent StudyProject work1130:00130:00N/A
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Lectures outline and illustrate each technique. Seminars, held in small groups, monitor students’ understanding and progress, providing opportunities for self- and mutual assessment of progress.

Assessment Methods

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

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Portfolio1A40Composition Portfolio (notated scores, written assignment)
Portfolio2A60Composition Portfolio (notated scores, written assignment)
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

Portfolios demonstrate attainment of technical and aesthetic development through creative output

Reading Lists