Course summary

The Bachelor of Contemporary Music equips graduates for a range of careers in the music industry and reflects the diverse creative practices that are part of music-making in the 21st century.

Students learn in a professional music industry environment, using state-of-the art facilities and study with lecturers who are all practising musicians with strong industry links. During the course performance students hone their practical musical and musicianship skills while developing extensive knowledge across a range of contemporary music-making practices.

Many students perform at North Coast entertainment venues or form bands and have the opportunity to regularly use the professional standard studio and performance space Studio One29, in the contemporary music building, for rehearsal and performance. Graduates from the course are well equipped to pursue careers as performers, songwriters, composers, arrangers, producers, engineers, and music educators.

Situated in a region with vibrant creative industries, students benefit from numerous high profile music events such as Splendour in the Grass and Byron Bay Bluesfest.

Female students are well supported through the Women in Music Program. The program gives students the opportunity to experience first hand the diversity of professional women working in the contemporary music industry, and to meet, be taught by, and network with, some leading female practitioners. Visit: scu.edu.au/womeninmusic

During first year, students learn about contemporary music theory and styles, the practice of music, music technology and the internet, songwriting and musicianship. They then select two majors from the following to specialise in their areas of interest.

  • Performance enables specialisation in the student’s chosen instrument (guitar, bass, keyboards, voice or drums). Practical tuition is provided through individual lessons and group workshops. These intensive technical music study sessions are supported by an ensemble performance program that includes a wide range of contemporary music repertoire. Entry to the performance major is by audition during the first year of study, with students commencing the major in the second year. 
  • Industry and Audio Production enables specialisation in the student’s chosen instrument (guitar, bass, keyboards, voice or drums). Practical tuition is provided through individual lessons and group workshops. These intensive technical music study sessions are prepares students for working professionally in the music industry and enables students to train for a portfolio career that encompasses composition and music production as well as practical music. Other areas of specialised study include conducting business in the music industry, marketing musical products and managing a career as an independent musician. 
  • Music Education provides training for students who are pursuing a career in music teaching. Areas of study include Western art music, ensemble direction and arranging, music theory, musicianship and practical music. These units provide vocational skills specifically required for secondary music teaching and also essential for teaching music in other contexts. 

Please note: Entry to the performance major is by audition during the first year of study, with students commencing the major in the second year.

Graduate AttributeCourse Learning Outcome
Intellectual rigour

Demonstrate skills of analysis, interpretation, evaluation and research.

Apply these skills to musical and other cultural contexts.

Creativity

Demonstrate creative and interpretive skills in a range of music composition, music performance, music production, and allied activities.

Apply these skills to creative work and outputs.

Ethical practice

Demonstrate a commitment to ethical practices and legal obligations in professional and personal contexts.

Knowledge of a discipline

Demonstrate a broad, integrated command of knowledge, skills and technologies in contemporary music.

Demonstrate the ability and confidence to make a successful transition to professional life.

Lifelong learning

Demonstrate the ability to be responsive to change, to be reflective in practice, and to be information literate.

Apply this ability to update and develop one’s knowledge through independent and self-directed learning.

Communication and social skills

Demonstrate a repertoire of written, oral, sonic and gestural communication skills.

Apply these skills to personal, and professional settings.

Cultural competence

Demonstrate the ability and confidence to engage with different cultural and indigenous perspectives at local, national and international levels.

Apply these skills in the conduct creative artistic practice.

Students undertake professional placements at major national and international venues and with music organisations. Public performances are a major part of the assessment process and students have opportunities to perform at North Coast entertainment venues or form bands, taking advantage of the rich music environment throughout the region. 

Graduates can become members of the Australasian Performing Rights Association, International Association for the Study of Popular Music, and the International Society for Music Education.


Course overview

Course code

3003140

Course abbreviation

BContempMus

Credit points

288

Equivalent units

24

Domestic duration

3 years full-time; 6 years part-time

International duration

3 years full-time

Availability details

Domestic

Location Session UAC code QTAC code
Lismore 1 333101 053011

Domestic fees

Commonwealth supported


International

Location Session Annual Fees CRICOS
Lismore 1 $19,680 ($2,460 per unit) 026996C

Course requirements

See the University’s Rules Relating to Awards, in conjunction with the Specific Award Rules listed below.

  1. To be eligible for the award of Bachelor of Contemporary Music degree a candidate shall successfully complete not less than twenty-four (24) units comprising:
    1. all units listed in Part A of the Schedule of Units attached to these Rules; and
    2. two (2) majors in Part B of the Schedule of Units noting that the Performance Major has a pre-requisite of demonstration of aptitude through an Audition prior to enrolment in units in the Performance Major.
  2. To be eligible for the award of Diploma of Contemporary Music a candidate shall successfully complete not less than eight (8) units comprising all units listed in Part A of the Schedule of Units attached to these Rules.
  3. A candidate who, while enrolled in the Bachelor of Contemporary Music, may elect to be awarded the Diploma of Contemporary Music following withdrawal from the Bachelor Degree.

Schedule of units

Title Level of learning Note

Part A – Core (All Majors)

MUS00497 - Introduction to Music Technology Introductory
MUS00620 - Contemporary Music Theory I Introductory
MUS00630 - Songwriting Introductory
MUS10501 - Music Practice I Introductory
MUS10502 - Music Practice II Introductory
MUS10505 - Applied Musicianship Introductory
MUS10506 - Music Industry Landscapes Introductory
MUS10509 - Sounds, Styles and Cultures Introductory

Part B — Specialist Majors

Note 2 Note 2
Note 1 Note 1
Note 1 Note 1

Course progressions

Students should use course progression information to select units specific to their course and enrol in these units using My Enrolment

Title Level of learning Note
Year 1, Session 1
Part-time students should complete MUS00497 and MUS10509 for Year 1, Session 1 and MUS10501 and MUS00620 for Year 2, Session 1
MUS00497 - Introduction to Music Technology Introductory
MUS00620 - Contemporary Music Theory I Introductory
MUS10501 - Music Practice I Introductory
MUS10509 - Contemporary Music Styles Introductory
Year 1, Session 2
Part-time students should complete MUS00630 and MUS10506 for Year 1, Session 2 and MUS10502 and MUS10505 for Year 2, Session 2
MUS00630 - Songwriting Introductory
MUS10505 - Applied Musicianship Introductory
MUS10506 - Music and the Internet Introductory
MUS10502 - Music Practice II Introductory
Year 2, Session 1
MUS10508 - Sound Theory and Recording Technique Intermediate
MUS00621 - Contemporary Music Theory II Intermediate
MUS10503 - Music Practice III Intermediate Note 3 Note 3
Choose 1 unit from: Contemporary Music - Option units
Year 2, Session 2
MUS10548 - Sounds, Beats and the Home Studio Intermediate
MUS10545 - Global Perspectives in Music Intermediate
MUS10504 - Music Practice IV Intermediate Note 3 Note 3
Choose 1 unit from: Contemporary Music - Option units
Year 3, Session 1
CAR10503 - Arts Industry Studies Intermediate
MUS10552 - Advanced Recording Studio Production Advanced
MUS10524 - Studies in Western Art Music Advanced
MUS10546 - Ensemble Direction and Arranging Advanced
Year 3, Session 2
COM00471 - Professional Placement Advanced
MUS10525 - Advanced Studies in Western Art and Contemporary Music Advanced Note 3 Note 3
Choose 2 units from: Contemporary Music - Option units Note 1 Note 1

Title Level of learning Note
Year 1, Session 1
Part-time students should complete MUS00497 and MUS10509 for Year 1, Session 1 - MUS10501 and MUS00620 for Year 2, Session 1
MUS00497 - Introduction to Music Technology Introductory
MUS10509 - Contemporary Music Styles Introductory
MUS10501 - Music Practice I Introductory
MUS00620 - Contemporary Music Theory I Introductory
Year 1, Session 2
Part-time students should complete MUS00630 and MUS10506 for Year 1, Session 2 - MUS10502 and MUS10505 for Year 2, Session 2
MUS00630 - Songwriting Introductory
MUS10506 - Music and the Internet Introductory
MUS10502 - Music Practice II Introductory
MUS10505 - Applied Musicianship Introductory
Year 2, Session 1
MUS10531 - Performance I Intermediate
MUS10541 - Ensemble I Intermediate
MUS10544 - Advanced Musicianship Intermediate
MUS00621 - Contemporary Music Theory II Intermediate
Year 2, Session 2
MUS10532 - Performance II Intermediate
MUS10542 - Ensemble II Intermediate
MUS10545 - Global Perspectives in Music Intermediate
MUS10548 - Sounds, Beats and the Home Studio Intermediate
Year 3, Session 1
MUS10533 - Performance III Intermediate
MUS10543 - Ensemble III Intermediate
MUS10524 - Studies in Western Art Music Advanced
MUS10546 - Ensemble Direction and Arranging Advanced
Year 3, Session 2
MUS10534 - Performance IV Advanced
MUS10525 - Advanced Studies in Western Art and Contemporary Music Advanced
Choose 2 units from: Contemporary Music - Option units

Title Level of learning Note
Year 1, Session 1
Part-time students should complete MUS00497 and MUS10509 for Year 1, Session 1 - MUS10501 and MUS00620 for Year 2, Session 1
MUS00497 - Introduction to Music Technology Introductory
MUS10509 - Contemporary Music Styles Introductory
MUS10501 - Music Practice I Introductory
MUS00620 - Contemporary Music Theory I Introductory
Year 1, Session 2
Part-time students should complete MUS00630 and MUS10506 for Year 1, Session 2 - MUS10502 and MUS10505 for Year 2, Session 2
MUS00630 - Songwriting Introductory
MUS10506 - Music and the Internet Introductory
MUS10502 - Music Practice II Introductory
MUS10505 - Applied Musicianship Introductory
Year 2, Session 1
MUS10531 - Performance I Intermediate
MUS10541 - Ensemble I Intermediate
MUS10544 - Advanced Musicianship Intermediate
MUS10508 - Sound Theory and Recording Technique Intermediate
Year 2, Session 2
MUS10532 - Performance II Intermediate
MUS10542 - Ensemble II Intermediate
MUS10548 - Sounds, Beats and the Home Studio Intermediate
Choose 1 unit from: Contemporary Music - Option units
Year 3, Session 1
MUS10533 - Performance III Intermediate
MUS10543 - Ensemble III Intermediate
CAR10503 - Arts Industry Studies Intermediate
MUS10552 - Advanced Recording Studio Production Advanced
Year 3, Session 2
MUS10534 - Performance IV Advanced
COM00471 - Professional Placement Advanced
Choose 2 units from: Contemporary Music - Option units

Title Level of learning Note
Session 1
MUS00497 - Introduction to Music Technology Introductory
MUS10509 - Contemporary Music Styles Introductory
MUS10501 - Music Practice I Introductory
MUS00620 - Contemporary Music Theory I Introductory
Part-time students should complete MUS00497 and MUS10509 for Year 1, Session 1 and MUS10501 and MUS00620 for Year 2, Session 1
Session 2
MUS00630 - Songwriting Introductory
MUS10506 - Music and the Internet Introductory
MUS10502 - Music Practice II Introductory
MUS10505 - Applied Musicianship Introductory
Part-time students should complete MUS00630 and MUS10506 for Year 1, Session 2 and MUS10502 and MUS10505 for Year 2, Session 2
Majors must be selected and saved to study plan before enrolling in Year 2 units [except for Performance major units - successful students for this major will be enrolled by the Student Management Unit on their behalf]

Notes

Note 1: For Industry and Audio Production/Music Education major combination — an extra option unit is added to Music Education major based on duplicate core unit MUS10548 Sound, Beats and the Home Studio — this unit is recognised towards the Industry and Audio Production major.
Note 2: Entry into the Performance major is by selection. Students enrolled in MUS10502 Music Practice II unit are required to nominate by submitting the MPII Performance Major nomination form, available through MySCU Unit Learning Site, to the unit assessor at the commencement of session 2. The notification of a placement in the Performance major will take place directly after the final grades are published for session 2. Students will be advised of the outcome to their SCU email account. Students admitted to the combined Music/Education degree can only apply for entry if they are undertaking Music as the ONLY teaching area. Students who are undertaking two [2] teaching areas are not eligible to nominate. Students in the combined Music/Law degree are not eligible to nominate.
Note 3: For Industry and Audio Production/Music Education major combination this unit becomes core — to satisfy NSW Board of Studies, Teaching & Educational Standards eligibility to teach