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A-Level

Music Technology

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Music Technology is designed for students interested in pursuing a career in music production. The Music Technology course is broken up into four units that cover the full spectrum of basic skills needed to progress to a higher level of study or to work in one of the many areas of music production.

Exam Board

Edexcel

Entry Requirements

There are no entry requirements, but students should play an instrument or sing to a competent standard.

Assessment

  • 40% Coursework
  • 25% Listening
  • 35% Production skills exam
About this course FAQs An introduction to Music Technology Pathways Information

WHAT IS MUSIC TECHNOLOGY?

An A Level in Music Technology provides a foundation in music recording and production. As well as learning practical skills in using a Digital Audio Workstation (Cubase), you will study a wide range of pop music to develop your listening and your understanding of its history and context from a technical perspective.

 

WHAT WILL I STUDY?

You will study the techniques needed to arrange and record a song as well as to produce a composition that includes samples and synthesized sounds. In year 12 you will complete shorter tasks to familiarise yourself with synthesizers, processing and effects plugins and a range of other production tools available in Cubase. You will also learn how these tools have emerged and developed since the 1930s to the present day. A good music technology student will be able to describe and recreate the production techniques found in a wide range of genres from songs through to film and gaming music. In year 13 you will produce your coursework as well as preparing for exams in technical skills, listening and context.

 

ASSESSMENTS

You will complete two main coursework tasks (40%):
• a studio recording that reproduces an existing track
• a technology-based composition
You will also take two exams (60%):
• a listening paper in which you analyse and write about unfamiliar commercial recordings.
• a technical paper in which you manipulate and mix a range of audio and MIDI materials in exam conditions and then write an essay on a specific aspect of recording/producing technology.

 

TRIPS, VISITS AND ENRICHMENTS:

• We use our links with professional studios and institutions in the West Midlands to run a range of trips and visits. This year we are going to BIMM for a composition workshop among other activities.
• We have a very busy programme of performance with lots of opportunity to get involved. Join our choirs, orchestra, string orchestra, wind band, jazz band and a range of student led bands and ensembles.

 

WHAT CAN IT LEAD TO?

The A level provides a sound basis for Creative Music Technology degrees and other related courses. It can lead to careers in composing, studio work, and teaching, as well as in publishing and media. It combines particularly well with Music A level. Students who have taken this combination in the past at King Ed’s have gone on to successful careers in composing for film, media and theatre as well as a range of jobs in music production. Several of our ex-students are now working in creating music for film and media, with one even winning a Welsh BAFTA.

FAQs

QDo I need to be experienced with Music Technology?
Our students arrive with a wider range of backgrounds. We start from scratch so it is perfectly possible to take this subject without prior experience but obviously those already familiar with DAWs can often progress more quickly and easily at first.
Is performing part of the course?
You are not assessed on performance but students will need to play on each other’s recordings, so you do need to be able to play an instrument or sing to a good standard.

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