Course Overview

Attendance
UK/EU Fees £975 *
International Fees £1,325 *
Alumni Discount See details
Duration 2 years

* Price per 20-credit module

Course summary

This course is recognised highly in music business management education and will prepare you to become one of the next generation of music industry leaders and entrepreneurs. All teaching staff on the course are currently working in the music industry, and every week there are a number of high-level industry guests. You will need to be a self-motivated and open-minded student, as this is an intense course, but one which can help you to progress your career across a wide range of music business disciplines.

Working with music industry leaders and organisations, the course has developed a unique curriculum. You will be able to combine a strong underpinning of key business skills (finance, leadership, organisational management, marketing and entrepreneurialism), with essential music industry management knowledge (strategic innovation and technology, intellectual property and copyright, and a focus on the live industry and digital content exploitation).

Teaching is mainly through lectures In each module there is a minimum of two assignments. The final project is a report of a minimum of 12,000 words.

Course structure

Core modules

This module will critically explore the primary relationship with the music industry of artist and repertoire development, commonly referred to as A&R. The A&R department of any music company is where the process of music creativity and production start; it is the research and development department. This module seeks to critically evaluate the evolution of A&R within the music industry by examining contemporary artists case studies within each session from both a local domestic and international music industry perspective. You will be expected to contribute and practise your contemporary musical knowledge in each session and develop an A&R strategy for an act you have identified as having commercial or cultural significance. 

This module is concerned with the critical evaluation of entrepreneurial business structures and finance in the creative industries. Entrepreneurial business and finance for creative industries increasingly has a significant effect on the development and promotion of new talent and is particularly relevant to students from both a creative and entrepreneurial background. This module is designed to provide you with a solid introduction to media economics, financial management and entrepreneurship in the creative industries. It will equip you with the tools to analyse financial documents and analyse business finances. It will provide insights into traditional accounting practices, as well as providing you with the knowledge to produce industry standard business and marketing plans based on industry financial practices. It will examine entrepreneurial issues facing creative industry firms and small businesses and will provide an overview of the activities required in starting and managing a business.

Intellectual Property (IP) and copyright are central to the music industry, where successful management of a firm’s IP and copyrights can provide a powerful competitive advantage. IP and copyright can cover works as diverse as songs, master recordings, videos, knowledge, ideas and more. You will gain a firm understanding of the various dimensions of IP and copyright, and the tools and strategies to identify, protect and manage them. You will also explore the international perspective of ownership issues, contracts, licensing and the commercialising of IP, including business and legal issues, domestic and international copyright law, and music industry agreements. 

The module will critically examine the development of the internal live music market, which is now the largest source of revenue in the commercial music market. This module will critically evaluate the historical development of the live music sector from the perspective of the key stakeholders, from artist and bands to record companies and live agents. 

The Music Business Management Project is recognised by graduates as one of the most rewarding and empowering experiences of the course. You will be supervised by a member of the University faculty, and possibly supported by a music industry representative, to carry out research in an area agreed between yourself and the module leaders and/or industry professional. The subject must address current music business issues and concerns and should incorporate relevant music business theories, academic research design and critical analysis. The Project builds on the skills and experience you have gained in previous modules, and gives you the opportunity to apply programme knowledge to a major project, adding to the body of professional practice and theoretical literature.

This module provides you with a historical perspective on the development of the music industry and aims to help contextualise the current state of the industry and its place within it. Teaching is delivered in a weekly lecture and seminar session format. The first set of lectures is dedicated to investigating the histories of discrete areas of the music industry, such as copyright, piracy, music and media. The second half of the module provides a general history focused upon the development of the post-war British record industry from the 1940s to the present day. Along the way, the usefulness of analytical such as Peterson’s ‘production of culture approach’ are also considered. The seminar section of the teaching sessions develop on the lecture content and involve discussion, small group work and other learning activities aiming to build upon knowledge and skills. You are also introduced to appropriate research and study techniques. 

Marketing and promotion is essential to the music industry; it sells tickets, recorded music services and products and is a fundamental tool for developing talent. Through this module you will explore a variety of perspectives on marketing management issues including the challenges of developing the artist and their music, identifying potential consumers and fans and marketing and promoting music-related services and products through various media channels including social media. You will focus on expanding an understanding of how music marketing and promotion fits into the contemporary music industry through the study of best practice, concepts and theories that inform how industry professionals operate. 

Entry Requirements

Applications are considered on the basis of either a combination of formal qualifications and experience, or significant industry experience. Applicants should be able to demonstrate experience working in the music industry, an aptitude for music business management and an enthusiasm for learning more about music and related industries. Applicants with formal qualifications should have a minimum of an Upper Second Class undergraduate degree.

If English is your second language you should have an IELTS score of at least 6.5 with 6.5 in each element.

View more information about our entry requirements and the application process.

Applications are considered on the basis of either a combination of formal qualifications and experience, or significant industry experience. Applicants should be able to demonstrate experience working in the music industry, an aptitude for music business management and an enthusiasm for learning more about music and related industries. Applicants with formal qualifications should have a minimum of an Upper Second Class undergraduate degree.

If English is your second language you should have an IELTS score of at least 6.5 with 6.5 in each element.

More information

Careers

Course graduates have gone on to work in a wide variety of creative industries, from mobile marketing through to the Arts Council. Many of our graduates are working in the music industry, with companies including Apple , Spotify Universal, Sony Music ,  Pledge Music , Kobalt , Shazam and  PIAS.  Our international students are working around the globe in music and music –tech related companies, including EMI Holland ,  PIAS European office and Outdustry in mainland  China .

Today's music industry organisations need graduates with both strong degrees and skills relevant to the workplace. The MA Music Business Management course is committed to developing employable graduates by ensuring that:

  • Career development skills are embedded in the course
  • Opportunities for internships, placements and work-related learning activities are available to students
  • Our staff links with employers in all areas of the music industry and their willingness to come to the university and give guest talks , enables students to network with potential employers in class and in social situations to make important contacts and strengthen their employability skills.
  • Alumni keep in close contact with the course , often returning to deliver guest speeches  and meet and network with students. This strong “community of learning” assists with recruitment and internship opportunities.

 

The course is globally recognised and industry leaders are weekly guests to the Central London Cavendish teaching campus for guest speaking , Q&A sessions and networking with students . Furthermore , our alumni are working across the international music industry on all continents, in areas of the industry ranging from music companies to live music and publishing , artist management to tech start up, with a wide variety of companies and organisations, large and small, including:

  • Apple
  • Spotify
  • Sony Music
  • Universal
  • Sony ATV Publishing
  • Kobalt
  • Shazam
  • Pledge Music
  • 365 Management
  • Cooking Vinyl
  • Outdustry –China
  • Tileyard
  • East City Management
  • Robomagic
  • Hypesong
  • Warners
  • Ministry of Sound
  • Machine Management
  • Universal Music Publishing
  • Kilimanjaro,
  • Platinum Rye

Our Career Development Centre has just been shortlisted for the Best University Careers Service in the National Undergraduate Employability Awards for 2017.

With a growing network of over 3,000 employers around the world and a team of experienced careers consultants, we are here to help you succeed.

In 2015–16, we helped over 1,500 students find work placements across a range of sectors, with 250 employers attending 14 on-campus skills and careers fairs.

As a Westminster student, you’ll have access to our services throughout your studies and after you graduate.

We can help you:

  • find work placements related to your course
  • find part-time/vacation, placement and graduate jobs, including voluntary experience
  • find international opportunities to enhance your employability
  • market yourself effectively to employers
  • write better CVs and application forms
  • develop your interview and enterprise skills
  • plan your career with our careers consultants
  • meet employers and explore your career options at our employer fairs, careers presentations and networking events throughout the year

Find out more about the Career Development Centre.

Course Location

The vibrant home of Westminster School of Media, Arts and Design, the Harrow Campus offers one of the richest portfolios of creative industry research and learning in Europe. The recent redevelopment of the campus has seen the creation of fluid, informal learning spaces, dedicated project and gallery spaces and a revamped library. For more details, visit our Harrow Campus page.

Fees and Funding

UK and EU tuition fee: £975 (price per 20-credit module)

Find out how we set our tuition fees.

Alumni discount

This course is eligible for an alumni discount. Find out if you are eligible and how to apply by visiting our Alumni discounts page.

Funding

As well as tuition fee loans, there is a range of funding available to help you fund your studies.

Find out about postgraduate student funding options.

Scholarships

The University is dedicated to supporting ambitious and outstanding students and we offer a variety of scholarships to eligible undergraduate students, which cover all or part of your tuition fees.

Find out if you qualify for one of our scholarships.

Additional costs

See what you may need to pay for separately and what your tuition fees cover.

International tuition fee: £1,325 (price per 20-credit module)

Find out how we set our tuition fees.

Alumni discount

This course is eligible for an alumni discount. Find out if you are eligible and how to apply by visiting our Alumni discounts page.

Funding

Find out about funding for international students.

Scholarships

The University is dedicated to supporting ambitious and outstanding students and we offer a variety of scholarships to eligible undergraduate students, which cover all or part of your tuition fees.

Find out if you qualify for one of our scholarships.

Additional costs

See what you may need to pay for separately and what your tuition fees cover.

Facilities

We offer fully equipped rehearsal rooms, state-of-the-art recording studios and a brand new live music venue. We aim to give our students first-hand experience of "real world" recording environments and to set them on their paths to successful music industry careers.

More information

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