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  1. Undergraduate and foundation
  2. 2021
Study at City

BMus (Hons) Music

Entry Year:
Experience conservatoire-level tuition, with all the benefits of a university setting. We offer an inspiring environment to make music, with outstanding facilities and performance opportunities, as well as performance scholarships of up to £2,000, sandwich year, study abroad and placement options, and excellent graduate prospects.

Key information

Start date

September 2021

Academic year dates


3 years or 4 years with one of the two optional sandwich year routes: a work placement year or study abroad year, to be undertaken between years two and three of the course.


Full-time: £9,250 (2020/21 fee; 2021/22 fees TBC) *


Full-time: £15,160 (21/22 fee; 2022/23 fees TBC) **


Full-time: £15,160 (21/22 fee; 2022/23 fees TBC) **

UCAS code


Application period

From September 2020


Northampton Square

Who is it for?

The Music BMus (Hons) degree at City will suit anyone interested in developing their knowledge and passion for music. The course enables you to immerse yourself in a subject you love, providing the opportunity to learn and create in a highly energised and supportive department with internationally recognised staff who share your devotion to music.

Our degree combines conservatoire-level tuition with all the benefits of a university education. Students study with leading professionals, many of whom also teach at the leading London conservatiores.

As part of the overall tuition, we offer a competitive 20 hours per year of solo instrumental/vocal tuition. For composers there are many opportunities to have their works performed by leading professional ensembles. Plus, we offer performance scholarships on a competitive basis.

The course will appeal to students who want to actively perform and make music. City offers a wide range of ensembles, including classical, contemporary, jazz and world music, regular concerts and a summer festival – all giving you the opportunity to perform and discover world-class musicians.

Whatever your future ambitions, this degree will prepare you for a wide range of careers and postgraduate study options in music, including composition and performance. To help you prepare for a rewarding career, you have the option to take a sandwich year on a work placement or study at one of our partner institutions abroad. You will also gain highly transferable writing, presentation and IT skills, equipping you for a variety of graduate-level careers.

Find out more about our department.


During your BMus (Hons) Music degree at City, you will take an exciting, global and interdisciplinary approach to the study of Music, blending theory and practice.

The course combines excellent graduate prospects, exceptional academics and outstanding facilities within a supportive musical community in a central London location, enabling you to:

  • Immerse yourself in every aspect of music.
  • Gain exciting new perspectives on music and its relationships with culture, technology and society through a close study of classical, popular and world music.
  • Develop a broad framework of knowledge and experience that is essential for today's musicians.
  • Learn with highly accomplished professionals active in or around London, many of them also teaching at the leading conservatoires in the city.

We offer a wide choice of modules, so you can focus your studies on the areas that interest you most.

Students pursuing solo performance receive instrumental or vocal tuition at City from leading professional performers.

The value of a music degree and the wide range of employability skills that music students develop is widely recognised by employers, and this is evidenced by our outstanding employment statistics: 100% of our graduates were in employment or further study six months after graduation (DLHE 2016/17).

During this degree, you will develop a wide range of transferrable skills, including communication and interpersonal skills, creative thinking, organisation and discipline, teamwork, leadership, planning and time-management and problem-solving.

Explore some student work.

Requirements and how to apply

Entry requirements

  • 'A'Level: ABB (including 'A' Level Music). We accept Grade 8 Theory in lieu of 'A' Level Music, subject to candidates achieving the requisite ABB (or equivalent) in other subjects.
  • UCAS Tariff: 128 points (including 'A' Level Music). See the UCAS website for information on the new tariff system.
  • IB: 30 points, 5,5,5 from three Higher Level subjects with a recognised performance qualification.
  • Cambridge Pre-U: Equivalent tariff points in 3 Pre-U principle subjects, including Principle Subject in Music. Combinations of Pre-U principal subjects and other qualifications (such as A-levels) considered.
  • GCSE: A minimum of grade 4(C) in GCSE English and Mathematics.
  • Performance: This is a central part of our curriculum. We value practical skills highly and offer many performance opportunities. We normally require a good Grade 7 performance qualification (or equivalent) for students intending to pursue solo performance. An audition can be arranged in lieu of a performance qualification. For students not intending to take solo performance, our performance entrance requirements are more flexible.

Access to Higher Education

We welcome Access course applications from 'mature' students. These applicants will be considered on the basis of their own merits. Please be aware that Access students are often asked for further information to supplement their application, this is normally in the form of a questionnaire.

A typical offer for an Access applicant would be: Pass 60 credits, 45 Level 3 including at least 27 at distinction and the remaining 18 at merit. The Access qualification should be supplemented by at least a grade 4 (C) in Mathematics and  English Language at GCSE.

Other suitable qualifications

If you have alternative or international qualifications (such as IB or BTEC), or if you do not have 'A' Level Music, your application will be considered on its individual merits.

Typical examples of offers made to applicants with qualifications other than 'A' Levels include the following:

  • Access to HE Music Diploma: Pass to include 27 Level 3 credits at Distinction and 18 Level 3 credits at Merit.
  • Apolytirion: 18.0 - 19.0 pts (plus English-language requirements where necessary).
  • BTEC National Diploma: 3 Distinctions (DDD) in Music only.
  • Irish Higher Leaving Certificate: A1 in 3 subjects & A2 in 2 subjects (to include Music).
  • Scottish Advanced Highers: BBB (to include Music).

Other GCE and VCE combinations may be considered if their combined UCAS tariff score is in the region of 128 points. Offers will not be made on the basis of AS level grades alone.

Mature applicants

If you are a mature applicant (aged 21 years or over) without conventional qualifications, you will need to provide evidence of your abilities, and you may be invited to an interview. Each mature applicant will be considered on merit.

Overseas applicants

Overseas applicants who are unable to attend an interview in person will normally be required to submit a verified video recording of their performance and undertake an interview via Skype.

International Qualifications

We accept a wide range of European and international qualifications for direct entry to our programmes. For more information please contact

English requirements

IELTS: 6.5 overall with a minimum of 6.0 in each component.

PTE Academic: 59 overall with a minimum of 59 in each component.

English language programmes

If you need to improve your English language skills before you enter this course, our partner, INTO City, University of London offers a range of English language courses. These intensive and flexible courses are designed to improve your English ability for entry to this degree. Find out more about:

Visa requirements

International Students (EEA and Non EEA) coming to study in the UK, may need to apply for a visa or entry clearance to come to the UK to study. The way that you apply may vary depending on the length of your course. There are different rules for:

  • EEA nationals joining the programme in 2020 and EEA nationals joining from January 2021
  • Students on courses of more than six months
  • Students on courses of less than six months
  • Students on a pre-sessional English language course.

For more information see our main Visa page.

How to apply

Applications for degree courses must be made through the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS). You can apply through your school or college using the Apply system, which enables you to submit your application directly to the UCAS website.

You can apply to up to five universities or institutions on the form. The UCAS code for City, University of London is C60.

Please take care to enter the correct course code when applying, particularly for subjects with a Foundation year or with BEng (Hons) and MEng (Hons) or BSc (Hons) and MSci (Hons) options.

UCAS has implemented an ‘invisibility of choices’ policy so that, on the initial application and while you are receiving decisions, each institution can see only their entry and not those of other institutions you have chosen. This ensures that your application for a course at City is considered solely on your academic and personal qualities.

You should submit your completed application form to UCAS with a £23 application fee. If you want to apply to City, University of London only, you can make a single choice application at a reduced rate of £12.

When to apply

Your application for entry in September 2021 should arrive at UCAS between September 2020 and 29th January 2021. Applications that arrive after 29th January 2021 will be considered only at City’s discretion.

When your application is acknowledged by UCAS, you will be sent a personal identification number so that you can access your records via Track on the UCAS website.


For general enquiries about the admissions process at City, please contact our Admissions Office:

Telephone: +44 (0)20 7040 8716.

If your enquiry is about admission to a particular course, please use the contact details provided on the course page.

Contacting UCAS

Address: Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS), Rosehill, New Barn Lane, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, GL52 3LZ
Telephone: from inside the UK 0871 468 0468; from outside the UK +44 (0)871 468 0468
For callers with hearing difficulties: from inside the UK use the Text Relay service on 18001 0871 468 0468; from outside the UK dial +44 151 494 1260 (text phone) and then ask the operator to dial 0871 468 0468.

Large range of elective modules
Performance scholarships available for solo performers
During your course

More about fees

* The fee for this course in 2020/21 was £9,250 for each year of study. Fees for students commencing study in 2021/22 are to be confirmed.

** In 2020/21 the fee was £14,860 for the first year of study. Fees for students commencing study in 2021/22 are to be confirmed.

The institution reserves the right to increase your tuition fees annually to take account of the institution's increased costs of delivering educational services. The increase will normally be 2% but this is kept under review with reference to the RPI. If the institution intends to increase your tuition fees you will be advised of this alongside the published entry fee.


Explore up-to-date information about funding options, available financial support and typical living costs.

You will find a wide variety of funding sources and options available for the Music BMus (Hons) at City. Our award-winning Student Centre will provide you with financial advice and support to help you fund your studies. We also offer a wide range of scholarships and bursaries to our undergraduate students.

Future Finance Loans

Future Finance offers students loans of between £2,500 and £40,000 to help cover tuition fees and living expenses. All students and courses are considered. All loans are subject to credit checks and approval for further details please visit the Future Finance website.

The Lord Mayor of London Scholarship


Performance scholarships

We offer scholarships for entering instrumentalists and vocalists that are renewable each year of study subject to satisfactory academic progress.

We have twelve scholarships, worth up to £2,000 and renewable each year of study subject to satisfactory academic progress.

We are welcoming interest in the scholarships from instrumentalists and vocalists, and will be offered, typically, to advanced performers beyond Grade-8 level. Our scholarships include two piano-accompanist scholarships of £2000, and ten of £1000 each, including up to 5 vocal/choral scholarships.

Eligibility criteria

We will award scholarships based on an audition and a short statement of interest. In order to be eligible for the scholarship, applicants must:

  • be in receipt of an offer to study BMus Music at City, University of London
  • be a full-time student
  • be a self funded student and not in receipt of any other scholarships

Assessment and notification

We advise students to apply as soon as their offer is received, and before 15th February 2021, though applications after this date will still be considered. In line of current advice around COVID-19, scholarships applicants will usually be asked to submit videos of themselves performing their pieces of choice (details to be sent following application). Auditions will be evaluated by members of the Department of Music. All applicants will be notified of the results before the UCAS decision deadline (10th June 2021).

Those auditioning should present two pieces in contrasting styles and/or from different historical periods.

Scholars are expected to be leaders in their respective fields throughout their BMus studies, and actively contribute to, and enhance, the musical life of the department and the University. The scholarship will therefore continue to be awarded for the duration of the BMus degree, subject to satisfactory academic progression and successful fulfilment of the scholar's leadership role.

Apply for a scholarship

Student views

Eve Carpenter, a BMus (Hons) alumni explains how the friendly atmosphere helped her to settle into life at City and how being in a central London location provides a wide variety of career opportunities.


At City, we offer you the opportunity to gain experience of a music-related work environment during the second-year elective work placement module. It is a great way to apply the skills and experiences you have acquired and engage with your future career plans.

Students may also apply to take a sandwich year working in a placement between years two and three of the degree as part of the School or Arts and Sciences Integrated Professional Training Programme.

It is also possible to combine the options above by spending one term on the study abroad scheme and one term in a work placement in the UK. Alternatively, the Erasmus Plus Scheme enables students to spend a year working in Europe.

BMus students have recently undertaken placements at:

  • Brains and Hunch
  • British Harpischord Society
  • Les Misérables, The Queen's Theatre (Sound Department)
  • Live Music Now
  • London Ear Festival
  • London Philharmonic Orchestra (Education and Community Department)
  • MTV
  • Record of the Day
  • Richmond Music Trust
  • The Roundhouse
  • Songlines Magazine
  • Southwark Cathedral
  • Wired4music/Sound Connections
  • A large number of schools, colleges and community music organisations.

Discover what our students say about their placements and studying abroad.

Study abroad

The Music BMus (Hons) at City has been designed to help you to broaden your musical and personal horizons. If you perform well in your first year, you can apply to spend a full academic year studying at one of our international partner institutions (between years two and three of your degree). This option will lead to the award of the four-year degree ‘BMus (Hons) Music with a Year Abroad’.

Our international partners include:

  • Koç University, Turkey
  • National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Greece
  • RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia
  • Queensland University of Technology, Australia
  • University of Queensland, Australia
  • Seoul National University, Korea
  • Northeastern University, USA
  • University of Technology, Sydney, Australia
  • University of Turku, Finland

There are also options to study abroad through either the Erasmus or international exchange programmes. City, University of London's partner institutions in music include the University of Queensland (Australia), and the University of Turku (Finland).

For more information please see our student exchange webpages.

Academic facilities

music studio

As a music student at City, you can take advantage of a wide range of facilities including:

  • Advanced recording and composition studios.
  • Professional performance space.
  • Computer laboratories.
  • Rehearsal rooms.
  • Practice rooms.
  • World music instruments.

Our recording studio is equipped to deliver multitrack recording and mixing to a professional standard. Our composition studios include four surround studios (8.1/5.1), one of which is dedicated to film and live electronics work, and three stereo composition studios. All our studios are equipped for sound editing, processing and mixing, offering you general software, such as Logic, Sibelius, Pro Tools and Native Instruments Komplete.

Find out more about our excellent facilities.


We operate a Guarantee Scheme for first year undergraduates which means you will be offered place in one of City's affiliated Halls if you meet the Scheme's criteria.

Read more about our undergraduate halls.

Our Accommodation Service can also help you find private accommodation.

Find out more about private accommodation.

Learn a language for free

We offer a free language course for City, University of London students.

Find out how to apply


Course timetables are normally available from July and can be accessed from our timetabling pages. These pages also provide timetables for the current academic year, though this information should be viewed as indicative and details may vary from year to year.

View academic timetables

Please note that all academic timetables are subject to change.

Student support

We offer an extensive support network during your time here at City, University of London – from Learning Support (including disability support) and counselling to financial and career advice – leaving you free to enjoy every opportunity campus life has to offer.

Find out more about the different types of student support available.

Ask a student

Chat to our current students and read their blogs to gain an insight into studying at City and learn more about our undergraduate and postgraduate courses.

Course content and assessment

To make sure that you can begin or continue your studies with us during the COVID-19 pandemic, we have reviewed and adapted our courses to ensure a safe learning environment for our students and staff. We have modified the way some of our courses are delivered, with many programmes being made available online.

Contact us to find out more about how our programmes will be delivered.

Teaching and learning

Your course will be delivered by passionate academics who are internationally recognised as leaders in their fields – and dedicated to helping you succeed in your studies. To maximise the amount of attention given to you on the BMus Music programme, we offer a considerable amount of tuition in small groups and individually. This enables you to tailor your work to your own interests as much as possible.

Your learning, teaching and assessment will take the form of a combination of the following:

  • Lectures
  • Student-focused group discussions
  • Individual tutorials
  • Seminars by visiting professionals
  • Workshops for composition and performance with visiting ensembles and ensembles in residence, including with musicians in residence
  • Private performance tuition (for solo performers)
  • Ensemble rehearsals and performances.
  • Studio-based composition/recording work.
  • Guided listening and reading.
  • Independent study and library research.
  • Written examinations.
  • Oral presentations.
  • Ethnographic fieldwork assignments.
  • Project work.

Individual Instrumental/Vocal Tuition

If you pursue solo performance, you will receive instrumental or vocal tuition at the Department of Music with highly accomplished professionals who are active in and around London and many of whom also teach at leading conservatoires in the city.

Take a look at the instrumental and vocal teachers working in the Department of Music.

Concerts and the summer festival

Throughout the year, we host public lunchtime concerts and evening recitals as well as a summer festival, featuring performances from a host of world-class musicians to inspire you. Students also perform at these events, so you will have the opportunity to gain professional performance experience.
The BMus course also includes regular performance workshops led by professional musicians. Students participate through both performing and giving peer feedback. This builds a supportive and co-operative culture and helps familiarise students with the experience of performing in front of other musicians.

Have a look at our current events.

Assessment methods

Throughout the three years of the music degree, assessment is by a combination of project-based or practical and creative work, and examinations or coursework. You will receive a considerable amount of tuition in small groups and individually to maximise contact and enable you to tailor your work to your personal interests.

Marks obtained in your second and third years will contribute to your final degree award.

Coursework and examinations are typically worth 30% of the overall module mark, and the end-of-module project worth 70%, although this varies across modules. Composition and creative practice modules are assessed by portfolio, and performance modules are assessed by final recital and interim components.

Percentage of the course assessed by coursework

The balance of assessment by examination, practical examination (including recitals, ensemble performance and oral presentations) and assessment by coursework, extended project work, portfolio and dissertation will depend on the optional modules you choose.

The approximate percentage of the course assessment, based on choices made by students in 2019/20 is as follows:

Year 1

Written examination: 20% Practical: 25% Coursework: 55%

Year 2

Written examination: 16% Practical: 30% Coursework: 54%

Year 3

Written examination: 4% Practical: 38% Coursework: 58%


During the first year, all students study a core curriculum which includes solo and ensemble performance, Western classical, popular and world music, musicianship, critical listening, tonal harmony, composition and music technology. In years two and three, students choose from a range of elective modules in musicology, ethnomusicology, popular music studies, performance, composition and applied music studies, delivered by acknowledged specialists in their fields. Performers continue to receive specialist individual tuition subject to satisfactory progress.

Year 1

Year One is made up of six core modules (105 credits) and a choice of solo performance study or a language module (15 credits).

Core modules

  • Music in Culture 1: Western Art Music (15 credits)
  • Music in Culture 2: Social, Historical and Geographical Contexts (15 credits)
  • Materials of Tonal Music (30 credits)
  • Critical Listening (15 credits)
  • Composition 1 (15 credits)
  • Performance 1 (15 credits)
  • Practical Musicianship (including participation in ensembles)

Elective modules (15 credits)

  • Language module: Learn a language at beginner, intermediate, upper intermediate, or advanced level, taught at the Centre for Language Studies. Current offerings are Arabic, French, German, Mandarin, Spanish, and Russian.
  • Developing Creative and Professional Narratives (English)
  • Modern European History

All students also have the option to take a language option for non-credit.

Year 2 core modules

The second year is made up of 120 credits. You will take two core modules totaling 45 credits. In addition to the core modules you will choose 45 credits in Year Two and 60 credits in Year Three from a range of elective modules.

Core modules

  • Analysing Music (30 credits)
  • Ensemble Performance (15 credits).

Year 3 core modules

The third year is made up of 120 credits. You take one core module for a total of 15 credits. In addition to the core modules you will choose 45 credits in Year Two and 60 credits in Year Three from a range of elective modules.

Depending on your choice of Major Project options, you will choose a further 45 or 75 credits from a range of electives, offered biennially (some annually).

Core elective modules (Choose one or two Major Projects options):

  • Major Project: Dissertation (30 credits)
  • Major Project: Composition (30 credits)
  • Major Project: Performance 3 (30 credits).

Years 2 and 3 elective modules

In Year Two, in addition to the core modules, you will choose 75 credits from a range of elective modules.

In Year Three, depending on your Major Project options, you will choose a further 45 or 75 credits from a range of electives.

Elective modules

  • Composition: Moving Images* (15 credits)
  • Composition: Instrumental and Vocal* (15 credits).
  • Composition: Studio* (15 credits).
  • Debussy (15 credits).
  • Electronic Dance Music (15 credits).
  • Global Popular Musics (15 credits).
  • Greek Musical Traditions (15 credits).
  • Historical Performance Practice (15 credits).
  • Indonesian Music Studies (15 credits).
  • Interdisciplinary and Collaborative Process (15 credits).
  • Lieder (15 credits).
  • Music Business (15 credits).
  • Music Journalism (15 credits).
  • Music Therapy (15 credits).
  • Music Traditions of the Far East (15 credits).
  • Music Traditions of the Middle East (15 credits).
  • Music, Fascism, Communism (15 credits).
  • Music, Sound and the Environment (15 credits).
  • Musical Theatre (15 credits).
  • Nineteenth-Century Opera (15 credits).
  • Orchestral & Instrumental Studies (15 credits).
  • Orientalism and Exoticism in Music (15 credits).
  • Performance 2* (30 credits).
  • Performance 2A* (15 credits).
  • Popular Music Now! (15 credits).
  • Principles of Music Education (15 credits).
  • Rhythm (15 credits).
  • Romantic Virtuosi (15 credits).
  • Sensing Music (15 credits).
  • Singing the Earliest Music: Challenges for Performers and Listeners (15 credits).
  • Sound Recording for Musicians* (15 credits).
  • Sound, Art and Technoculture (15 credits).
  • Sound, Music and the Moving Image (15 credits).
  • Stravinsky (15 credits).
  • The Age of Monteverdi - Innovation and Tradition (15 credits).
  • The Classical Style (15 credits).
  • Wagner, Mahler & Schoenberg: Art and the Transcendent (15 credits).
  • Micro-placement* (15 credits).

* Usually offered annually; others are typically offered every other academic year.

The programme specification contains more information on how the course is organised, the requirements for progression for each part and credits required for awards.

Overall workload

Most contact hours will take the form of a mixture of lectures, seminar presentations, workshops and tutorials, depending on the nature of the module.The department is committed to small group teaching wherever possible in order to maintain a student-centred approach to teaching and to enable your participation in the learning process. This programme will include an average of 12 contact hours per week. In addition, you will be expected to undertake 23 independent study hours per week. There is a also a placement module and sandwich year option.

Approximate study time, based on  choices made by students in 2019/20 is as follows:

Year 1

Scheduled learning: 25% Independent learning: 75%

Year 2

Scheduled learning: 18% Independent learning: 82%

Year 3

Scheduled learning: 15% Independent learning: 85%
  • Portrait of Alex George, former BMus Honours student
    Student profile
    What I love about this course is the variety that the programme has to offer, from modules, to ensembles as well as encouraging students to be independent and create their own options..
    Music BMus (Hons)
  • Portrait of George Georgiou playing the saxophone, BMus alumnus and Stage Coordinator for the Cyprus Symphony Orchestra
    Student profile
    The course is very well balanced and will definitely give you all the necessary information you need to evolve as a musician. Moreover, the University is located in central London where you can find everything you are looking for. If you really want to become a musician or an artist, being in London will accelerate your progress..
After you graduate

Career prospects

Our Music degree structure enables you to explore and prepare for a range of music-related careers, with optional modules in sound recording, music business, music education and more. Students can also choose to take the work placement module in the second year or the sandwich year option between years two and three.

City's central London location provides a wealth of employment, volunteering and networking opportunities. The University Careers Service offers information and advice on careers, runs workshops on topics such as writing CVs and interview skills and advertises employment and internship opportunities. The Music Department also holds an annual ‘Careers with a Music Degree’ evening in conjunction with the Careers Service, with speakers from a wide range of employment areas.

You will develop your writing, presentation and IT skills throughout the course, equipping you for a range of graduate-level careers in areas from performing and composing to sound design and recording.

City’s BMus degree provides professional skills that are transferrable to a wide range of professions beyond music, as many employers recognise. Some of our alumni have gone into careers in finance, marketing, management, media production (television, radio, theatre), digital industry and events organisation among other areas. Many pursue further study at postgraduate level.

City Music alumni work for a wide range of organisations including the BBC, Royal Opera House and Sony. Take a look our graduate destinations and occupations on the Music Department page.

86.7% of graduates in employment or further study six months after completing the course

Contact details

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