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Music International Foundation Programme *Fees Payable* at DLD College

Course description


  • Prepares you for undergraduate study at a Music conservatoire such as the Royal Academy of Music, etc.
  • Gives a firm grounding in the study skills required to study in the UK.
  • Unlike other foundation courses, this course will leave you with internationally recognised qualifications.
  • Mode: Full-time Duration: 1 year



  • International students who want to spend a year preparing an application to a music college or university. You should have completed your education up to the age of 18.
  • Other students who want to spend a year improving their musical skills, and who are completing or retaking other A levels/BTEC.


Course content

The course includes five components:

1. Grade 8 ABRSM or Diploma: You will receive two weekly one-to-one lessons in your first study instrument/voice (2 hours) to prepare for the examination during the year. The Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music (ABRSM) qualifications are equivalent to an A level and are awarded the same UCAS points. 

Practical music exams (choose from 35 instruments or voice) consist of three pieces, chosen by the candidate from the appropriate lists in the current syllabus, scales and arpeggios, sight-reading and aural tests.

Total marks in all individual Practical exams are 150. 100 marks are required to achieve Pass, 120 marks to pass with Merit and 130 marks to pass with Distinction.

2. ABRSM exam in second study: You will receive weekly one-to-one lessons in a second study instrument (60 minutes). Students are strongly encouraged to study piano if it is not their principle study.

3. Grade 6-8 Theory: Music conservatoires accept Grade 8 theory (ABRSM) as an alternative to a full A level in Music. This will be taught either individually or in small groups.

Grade 8 Theory: The harmonic vocabulary will include all standard diatonic and chromatic chords. Questions in the exam will cover:

  • Continuation of a given opening of a passage from a Baroque trio sonata for two treble instruments and basso continuo. The basso continuo part will be given throughout and fully figured (but a realization for keyboard will not be required).
  • Completion of an outline of a short passage for keyboard. Some knowledge of the styles practised by composers from the time of Haydn onwards will be assumed.
  • Continuation of a given opening of a melody for a specified instrument (a choice will be given).
  • Questions on short extracts of music written for piano or in open score for voices or for any combination of instruments and/or voices, designed to test the candidate’s knowledge of the elements and notation of music, including the realization of ornaments, the identification and notation of underlying harmonic structure, phrase structure, style, performance, and on the voices and instruments for which the works were written.

4. Students will also follow a course of Alexander technique leading to a certificate. This course improves body posture and breathing and is used widely in music and drama colleges to improve performance skills.

5. Students with an IELTS score below 6.5 (or equivalent) will follow a course in Academic English in preparation for the IELTS examination to satisfy the language requirements of higher education. The minimum requirement for Music is usually 5.5.

6. Students will also study for a one year A level in their first language. In certain circumstances it may be possible to study 1 year A level Mathematics.


Other optional courses will be run externally.


Please note: It is important that Foundation students have at least 2 A levels (or BTEC equivalent) by the end of this course in order to qualify for an undergraduate degree. Therefore this may require students to study over two years rather than one.


Entry requirements

  • A score of Academic English 5.0 or equivalent, and to have finished compulsory education in their home country. You should have completed at least 2 AS levels or be capable of completing 2 A levels in one year whilst at DLD.
  • You will need to be an exceptional musician. On entry, it is expected that you will be working at Grade 8 level (or equivalent) and are capable of achieving a distinction.

Future opportunities

Most students progress to Music or Music Technology related courses at university; many have gone to study at top music conservatoires in the UK. We have a regular programme of guest speakers from the music industry, who are able to offer professional advice as well as opportunities for our students. Many of our current students are professional producers and are currently working with top recording artists such as Ellie Goulding and Rhianna.

Further information


  • Brand new state-of-the-art facilities, including a three room Music Studio suite of; 3 music practise rooms; two further classrooms. Each student will have access to the latest iMacs and music production software, as well to professional recording equipment.
  • We will provide a 24/7 boarding school environment with complete educational and pastoral support all onsite. This integrates students into the UK and college life with an excellent pastoral system supporting students all the way as they arrive in the UK.
  • London is the world’s music capital and offers a rich Arts culture with an infinite variety of musical opportunity.


How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact DLD College directly.

Last updated date: 24 November 2016
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Key information


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    • DLD College London is situated in the heart of London, directly opposite Westminster and Big Ben. The campus is a few minutes walk from Westminster Underground or Waterloo Station.