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The Musicology of Production - MUS00058M

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  • Department: Music
  • Module co-ordinator: Dr. Jez Wells
  • Credit value: 10 credits
  • Credit level: M
  • Academic year of delivery: 2020-21

Module will run

Occurrence Teaching cycle
A Spring Term 2020-21

Module aims

  • To introduce the study of audio production and audio productions as musical activities and texts which have their intrinsic value and meaning as well as historical, cultural and technological contexts and impacts.
  • To develop listening skills, and a systematic evaluation methodology, for identification and critique of audio recording and production styles.

Module learning outcomes

  • Students should be able to understand and use both technological and musicological terminologies and concepts to assess production techniques, technologies and outcomes.
  • Students should be able to develop their own analyses of existing audio productions that consider their wider context and impact beyond just the identification and description of production techniques and technologies.
  • Students should be able to link technique and technology to methodology and phenomenology in order to identify and describe production style within individuals, movements and cultures.

Academic and graduate skills

  1. Autonomous task planning and implementation
  2. Ability to advance individual knowledge and understanding
  3. Initiative
  4. Flexibility and adaptability
  5. Analytic skills
  6. Self-management
  7. Self-motivation
  8. Organisation and planning
  9. Lateral thinking
  10. Time management and prioritisation
  11. Engagement with the unfamiliar
  12. Independent learning


Task Length % of module mark
Essay 3000 Words
N/A 100

Special assessment rules



Task Length % of module mark
Essay 3000 Words
N/A 100

Module feedback

Comments and breakdown of marks by end of week 6, term 3.

Indicative reading

  • Zagorski-Thomas, Simon The Musicology of Record Production, Cambridge University Press
  • Moorefield, The Producer as Composer: Shaping the Sounds of Popular Music, MIT Press
  • Danielsen, Anne (ed.) Musical Rhythm in the Age of Digital Reproduction, Ashgate
  • Katz, Mark Capturing Sound: How Technology Has Changed Music, University of California Press
  • Milner, Greg Perfecting Sound for Ever: The Story of Recorded Music, Granta Books

The information on this page is indicative of the module that is currently on offer. The University is constantly exploring ways to enhance and improve its degree programmes and therefore reserves the right to make variations to the content and method of delivery of modules, and to discontinue modules, if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Where appropriate, the University will notify and consult with affected students in advance about any changes that are required in line with the University's policy on the Approval of Modifications to Existing Taught Programmes of Study.