At Christ Church you’re given so many opportunities to play your instrument. Whether in weekly performance lectures, the Wednesday concert series or playing in the cathedral. It's amazing!


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4 years

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A foundation year helps you develop the study skills and self-confidence needed for higher education when you don’t reach the entry requirements for your subject.

Our BA Music degree is a broad-based course combining theory and practice in a wide range of genres and styles. As performer, composer/arranger, and musicologist, you will engage with an eclectic repertoire – not just the established ‘canon’ of art music, but music of different cultures and traditions, past and present. You’ll have the chance to meet and talk to an impressive variety of creative practitioners – some as part of our teaching team, others our fellow-professionals – and make music in some of the finest spaces in the country, including purpose-built studios, theatre spaces, and Canterbury Cathedral. 

Why study Music with Foundation Year?

This degree course will put you in a position to take your place in the many-faceted creative and performing arts industry as a versatile creative practitioner and music leader.


Entry requirements

Applicants should normally have 32 UCAS Tariff points. We will also welcome applications from students with few or no formal Level 3 qualifications who wish to return to education and applicants may be asked to attend an interview.

You do not need to have significant prior knowledge of Arts and Humanities related subjects but should be motivated to study the subject. All applications are considered on an individual basis according to qualifications, background and experience. Applicants will be required to demonstrate their suitability at an individual interview and, in the case of performers, an informal audition.

For more information on the IELTS (International English language Testing System) requirements for this course, please click here to visit our dedicated web page.

More information about entry requirements.

UCAS Points

All about the course

A foundation year is the first year of a four year programme:

  • Year 0 provides an introduction not only to study at University but also to your chosen subject
  • Year 0 offers you a highly supportive environment where you can develop the self-confidence, knowledge, skills and understanding for further study.

Whether you are a school-leaver or someone considering returning to study but don’t have the entry requirements for your chosen subject, a foundation year may give you a way of accessing higher education.

Module information

Please note that the list of optional modules and their availability may be subject to change. We continually review and where appropriate, revise the range of modules on offer to reflect changes in the subject and ensure the best student experience. Modules will vary when studied in combination with another subject.

Core/optional modules

How you’ll learn

The BA Music course is taught in two semesters each year: Semester 1 begins in September and ends with a two-week assessment period in January; Semester 2 runs from then until May. The Christmas and Easter holidays coincide with school terms across the UK.

Students take 3 modules in each semester. The teaching on each module will vary depending on the module content, but some appropriate combination of lectures, practical workshops, seminars and individual tutorials is the typical pattern.

‘Contact hours’ (i.e., face-to-face with a tutor in some form or other) will depend on the optional modules selected. Normally, a 20-credit module with 15-20 students has around 3–4 contact hours per week, but there are variations, particularly where a module is delivered predominantly by individual tutorials or in smaller groups.

You will be supported in your learning through regular access to your tutors and through one-to-one tutorials. In addition, you will meet periodically with your Personal Academic Tutor. All modules are supported by an online ‘Virtual Learning Environment’ (VLE) software programme called Blackboard. Every module has a Blackboard, which is a one-stop shop for information and learning materials.

You will have access to IT and library facilities throughout your course.

All programmes are informed by the University’s Learning and Teaching Strategy 2015-2022.

Every hour of timetabled sessions at university generates many more hours of self-directed study, guided by tutors. Typically, this involves working on performance or composition projects, reading and researching for written work, practicing your instrument, rehearsing in ensembles in preparation for your next session – and, eventually, for assessments.

That said, you may well have noticed in the brief module descriptions that the balance between tutor-directed and self-directed study shifts, quite dramatically, in the course of the three years. Thus, by the time you leave, we expect that you will have acquired the crucial graduate abilities which will make you the autonomous, creative, innovative, and well-organised colleague, teacher, practitioner, and/or performer we want you to become.

In all, your working week will usually consist of around 10 - 12 contact hours and up to 30 additional hours of independent study. Inevitably, there will be some variation to this depending on the modules you’re taking; there could, for example, be no end to the amount of individual instrumental practice you might do. 

The tutors on the BA Music degree programme are a remarkable group of highly qualified academics who all combine their teaching with professional activity, whether as performers, musicologists, and/or creative practitioners. We also benefit enormously from our rich association with fellow professionals who contribute their expertise on a freelance basis. These include instrumental teachers, ensemble directors, practitioners in specific areas such as the Alexander Technique or Music Therapy, visiting professors such as the composer Paul Patterson, or visiting lecturers with specialisms in areas of the curriculum. 

And while you bring together theory and practice in all kinds of music, we keep a sharp eye on your future career as a versatile practitioner and music leader.

Chris PriceMusic Programme Director

How you’ll be assessed

The nature of your assessment depends on the module, but you will be assessed by a range of appropriate methods including essays, presentations (in which you demonstrate not only subject knowledge but communication skills and mastery of relevant presentation software), practical work (such as performances and recordings), composition work (recordings and/or scores), or other project-based work (perhaps taking the form of a website or podcast).


You will receive feedback on all your assessments; we aim to provide it within 15 working days of submission.

Your future career

The BA Music course prepares you for a career as a performer, scholar, composer and a well-rounded creative musician. Graduates have, for example, frequently gone on to work as freelance performers, to pursue post-graduate study and gain teaching certification. For anyone planning on a career in primary or secondary education, for example, a BA in Music creates an ideal foundation by developing strong and transferable skills in group work, critical thinking, independent learning and a desire to share your enthusiasm with others.

A foundation year provides an introduction to academic study and life at university, supporting every student to achieve their full potential.

Martin WattsFoundation Year Programme Director


The 2022/23 annual tuition fees for this course are:

  UK** Overseas***
Full-time - Foundation Year 0 £9,250 £14,500
Full-time - years 1-3 * £9,250 £14,500

Tuition fees for all courses are payable on an annual basis, except where stated.

* The tuition fees of £9,250 / £14,500 relate to 2022/23 only. Please read the 2022/23 Tuition Fee Statement for further information regarding 2022/23 tuition fees and year on year fee increases.

**Home (UK) Fees

The fees above are for the 2022/23 academic year but may be subject to change following any announcements by the UK Government (approved by Parliament) regarding maximum Undergraduate tuition fee caps for 2022/23.

In addition, the University reserves the right to increase all full-time and part-time Undergraduate tuition fees mid-course, in line with any further inflationary increase in the Government tuition fee cap which is approved by Parliament. The University will publish information about any changes to tuition fees on its website.

***Overseas Fees (including EU fees):

Undergraduate Overseas tuition fees for International students are not subject to the Government’s regulations on maximum tuition fees.

An International student Scholarship fee discount of £1,500 will be applied to all Full-time Undergraduate courses with a tuition fee of £14,500.

Further information can be found on the following weblink which will be updated for 2022/23 entrants in due course:

Industry links

The University enjoys a close relationship with the Canterbury Festival, one of the country’s leading Arts Festivals, which mounts a two-week series of multi-disciplinary arts events in late October – in time for our students to participate and enjoy. This brings benefits to you not only in the form of original and entertaining projects to watch, but in the proximity to the Festival’s organisation and personnel: these are people who know what the creative and performing arts industry is really like.

Other collaborations have included work with the Philharmonia Orchestra, Glyndebourne Opera, the city’s Marlowe Theatre, and Canterbury Cathedral. We’re hoping that several of these partnerships will come together in 2021 for a major Arts Council-funded project planned to create new compositions for voices and chorus and provide workshop and performance opportunities for our students and the wider community in collaboration with the Cathedral Choir.

Regulated by the Office for Students

The Office for Students (OfS) regulates Canterbury Christ Church University. The OfS is the independent regulator of higher education in England. It aims to ensure that every student, whatever their background, has a fulfilling experience of higher education that enriches their lives and careers. Further details about its work are available on the OfS website.

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4 years

UCAS code:



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