Module title: Contextual Studies: Sampling Musical Worlds

SCQF level: 07:
SCQF credit value: 20.00
ECTS credit value: 10

Module code: MUS07140
Module leader: Paul Harkins
School School of Arts and Creative Industries
Subject area group: Humanities and Culture

There are no pre-requisites for this module to be added

2019/0, Trimester 1, Blended,
Occurrence: 001
Primary mode of delivery: Blended
Location of delivery: MERCHISTON
Member of staff responsible for delivering module: Paul Harkins
Module Organiser:

Learning, Teaching and Assessment (LTA) Approach:
Learning & Teaching Methods (including their alignment to Learning Outcomes)
Teaching and learning takes the following forms:

You will actively engage with fortnightly lectures delivered by specialist staff who will introduce key concepts and perspectives (L.O.’s 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5).
You will engage practically with concepts through individual and small group study, with activities contributing to the realisation of formative and summative assessments. Lectures in the second trimester will begin with a short presentation from a group of students on a particular genre. (L.O.’s 3, 4 and 5).

Formative Assessment:
There are two formative assessments in this module. The first is intended to provide feedback on written drafts, prior to submitting a summative assessment in essay form, at the end of the first trimester. Feedback will be provided by the module leader on drafts and exemplars will be analysed as a way of helping you understand the marking criteria.
In semester two, feedback will be given on the small group presentations that begin each lecture. from tutor and peers, and subsequent assessments take the form of peer review in small groups. Discussion and feedback from each contribute to the realisation of summative assessments This formative assessment will help students research the second piece of summative assessment, a group presentation.

Summative Assessment:
There are three summative assessments for this module.

Essay. Your first summative assessment for this module is an essay, which will be submitted in week 14. You will answer a question that requires you to use a range of academic, journalistic, and biographical texts to research the subject of sampling and the use of music technologies. This submission is worth 50% of your mark for the module. (L.O.s 1, 2 and 3)
Presentation: Your second summative assessment for this module will take place in week 30. You will be asked to prepare and deliver a presentation in collaboration with a small group of your peers. As a group you will be asked to research a particular genre of music, the key artists and groups who contributed to that genre, and analyse a musical work from the genre using musicological or other analytic tools. (L.O.s 3 and 4).
Presentation. Your final summative assessment will take place in week 32. You will be asked to take part in a group presentation discussing learning process, transferability of skills and interconnectivity of knowledge based on your programme learning experience. (L.O.s 3, 4 and 5)

Student Activity (Notional Equivalent Study Hours (NESH))
Mode of activityLearning & Teaching ActivityNESH (Study Hours)
Face To Face Lecture 24
Independent Learning Groupwork (Independent Study) 70
Independent Learning Guided independent study 106
Total Study Hours200
Expected Total Study Hours for Module200

Type of Assessment Weighting % LOs covered Week due Length in Hours/Words
Essay 50 1, 2 14 HOURS= 0, WORDS= 2000
Oral Presentation 30 3, 4 30 HOURS= .25, WORDS= 0
Oral Presentation 20 1, 2, 3, 4 32 HOURS= 0.25, WORDS= 0
Component 1 subtotal: 50
Component 2 subtotal: 50
Module subtotal: 100

Description of module content:

The aim of this module is to look at the technological, cultural, social, and historical contexts of music making, considering genre labels and the contexts in which they are used. This means engaging with key concepts and debates in the fields of Popular Music Studies (PMS), Science and Technology Studies (STS), sociology, and musicology to understand the relationship between music, technology, and society. Students will begin the module by examining the worlds of art, folk, and popular music and exploring how musical instruments and technologies are used in each of these musical worlds. Our attention then shifts to a more specific focus on the design of sampling technologies in the 1970s and 1980s and their use in a variety of musical genres. In the second half of the module, students will be given the opportunity to undertake detailed research into a music genre and examine important social, political and economic factors that contributed to its development. They will also have the opportunity to analyse the works of key artists and will develop a range of study skills including research, analysis, critical thinking, and essay writing.

Learning Outcomes for module:

Upon completion of this module you will be able to

LO1: Define sampling and acknowledge key developments in digital technology
LO2: Recount how sampling technologies have been used in the worlds of art, folk, and popular music
LO3: Respond to genre labels in popular music and engage with relevant critical debates
LO4: Deconstruct musical works and refer to elements such as song structure, melody, harmony, lyrics, rhythm, and production values
LO5: Gain an appreciation of interconnectivity and transferability of skill sets and information when preparing and presenting reflective outputs

Indicative References and Reading List - URL:

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