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Music Technology BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma at Stafford College

Course description

This course is designed to provide students with the necessary skills and qualifications for entrance into Higher Education and into the Music Industry.  Whether you have ambitions to be a sound engineer, producer, recording artist or electro-acoustic composer, the BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma in Music Technology will help you in achieving your goals.

Course content

The course is full time, lasts for 2 years, and consists of 18 modules.  These include a number of core units (such as the Music Industry, Sound Recording Techniques and Sound Creation) in addition to specialist units (such as The Freelance World, Pop Music in Practice and Acoustics).  The 18 modules are equivalent to 3 A Levels and offer a wide range of knowledge that reflects the current demands of this thriving industry.


The department contains 2 professional standard recording studios, where students will learn how to use mixing consoles, digital multi-track recording equipment, computer-based recording and editing packages and microphones. Professional practice will be explored and students will develop their own practical recording and production techniques throughout the duration of the programme


In addition to these facilities, the department also houses 2 computer labs with industry standard hardware and software for each individual student. Computer based composition and arrangement plays a significant role in the course and the student will use both Macintosh and PC based systems to access software sequencing packages. These include Reason, Cubase SX, Logic, Pro-Tools and Fruity Loops.


Work is continually assessed by ongoing project work. Students will complete practical assessments, presentations, role-play situations, written assessments and in-class discussion which will all contribute to a portfolio of ongoing skill development. Assessment culminates in a final project where students utilise all their skills to produce a finished music product complete with marketing plans and evaluations.


Each staff member has subject specific expertise, ranging from Live Sound to Digital Audio principles.  The department prides itself on keeping our student cohort up to date on the latest technology, and run trips to conferences and events such as the annual Music Live! Show at the NEC in Birmingham.


English & Maths

We are committed to helping students improve their skills in English and maths. Students on a full-time course at College who missed out on GCSE qualifications at grades A-C in these subjects at school will attend additional classes and receive support to enhance their grades. Depending on individual ability, students will work towards GCSE, City & Guilds or Functional Skills awards to ensure that they have the qualifications needed to progress to university or employment. To take catch-up classes to ensure you have the qualifications you need to progress onto university or into the workplace.  

Entry requirements

Minimum of 4 GCSE’s passes at grade C or above preferably including Music.


A full Level 2 Diploma in a related subject achieved at Merit grade or above. Pass grade will be considered if suitable practical / vocational skills can be demonstrated and a satisfactory reference provided.


Qualifications other than GCSE’s, in a subject not directly related to this course will be only recognised as equivalent to 1 GCSE.


Other experience will be considered for mature applicants.


Selection will be by interview. You may be asked to provide some examples of your own work or some evidence of your interest in musical development and your music experience for example, through audition.


You will be continually assessed throughout the two years.  Projects are designed to cover a broad range of activities, both practical and theoretical.  Projects are graded according to the BTEC criteria.  Coursework provides evidence of the activities and assignments that have taken place.


Each Unit is graded – Pass, Merit, Distinction and awarded points.  The points gained determine the overall result, which is also graded – Pass, Merit or Distinction.


Assessed work is internally verified and progress is closely monitored through tutorials and formal assessment.

Financial information

Fees for students over 18 apply as per Stafford College policy.  Students will be required to provide blank CD’s to allow submission of Course Work. ALL students will need to purchase basic stationery such as folders, pads, pens etc.


A USB storage device is also recommended to allow files to be transferred from computing labs to studio easily. These can be purchased for less than £10.  In addition to this, it is advised that the student provides their own headphones for mixing purposes.


If you require any advice on financial /travel support towards your education, please contact Student Services on 01785 275512 and ask for Carole Moore, or by email:

Future opportunities

Following a successful completion of the BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma, many students progress onto a degree programme in Music Technology, or a related subject at University.  The department also offers a BTEC Higher National Diploma in Music Production.  Tutorial sessions play an important role in empowering students to research and apply for jobs and Higher Education places, and include a vast amount of one-to-one work to ensure that the student is well informed and prepared.

Further information

If you would like further information about the college or our courses, you can write, visit, or telephone Student Services on 01785 275468.  Our e-mail address is:  If you are unsure about which course to take, we can arrange for you to talk to our guidance advisors.

How to apply

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

Last updated date: 20 May 2014
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