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Music Technology AS A2 at Weston Favell Academy

Course content

What will I study?The course, which is brand new to the school, will teach you how to use sequencing software (such as Cubase); how to produce a studio recording of a band using a 24 channel mixing desk; how to produce a direct to stereo recording of a performance of classical music; how to use your ears to detect effects which have been used on recordings; how to apply and use MIDI. For the AS course you will be required to produce a multi-track, overdubbed recording of a band, along with a direct to stereo recording of a more classical ensemble. You will create an arrangement of a folk song for various instruments, and create an improvised arrangement of a pop song (this is where the keyboard skills bit comes in!). You will also study the history of pop music, and recording techniques and effects. At A2, you will study multi-track recording techniques in greater depth, producing a recording involving at least 8 live tracks, using studio effects. You will also produce a MIDI backing track for a pop song (to which you will be required to add two recorded “live” parts, one of which must be the vocal). There is a “free choice” composition to be created as well, demonstrating your ability as an arranger/producer. You will study MIDI data and its uses, which further enhances your ability in sequencing. Finally there is a module of “words” and “music” which requires you to study two set albums – “Pet Sounds” by the Beach Boys and “Whats Going On” by Marvin Gaye. This leads to the production of a composition based on a brief issued by the examination board at the start of the Easter term.

Entry requirements

This course is designed for those who are interested in music sequencing and multi-track recording. Since there is some element of composition, it is best tackled by those who have already taken Music at GCSE, and keyboard skills are a definite advantage for this course. Being reasonably happy using a computer also helps!

Assessment

Assessment is a combination of internally marked coursework and externally marked examinations. All coursework is due by the end of the Easter term, with the written examinations taking place in the Summer term.

Future opportunities

There are over 180 different courses involving Music Technology at university. Largely of a vocational nature, these courses can be combined with subjects such as Music Publishing; Music Management and promotion; Music Performance (rock); Event Management; Commercial Music and many others. The course will lead to a greater understanding of modern commercial music - but don’t expect to become a Simon Cowell overnight: it takes a great deal of work and talent (but is supremely rewarding!).

Further information

Assessment is a combination of internally marked coursework and externally marked examinations. All coursework is due by the end of the Easter term, with the written examinations taking place in the Summer term.If you are really into your music, then the more traditional A Level Music course will work well alongside this subject, as will ICT. If your aim is to go into Sound Engineering, then Physics would also be useful. Apart from that, Music Technology is a good companion for any other subject.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Weston Favell Academy directly.

Last updated date: 26 May 2015
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