The HNC Music (African Music Studies) is aimed at anyone who would like an understanding of the music of Africa and the social/cultural context in which music making takes place; musically the focus is on percussion instruments. The course will be of special interest to those who wish to continue studies in the expanding field of ethnomusicology. The HNC will develop confidence, competence and encourage investigation while maintaining a focus on the performance of African music. Musical innovation, developing the ability to experiment and explore, will be promoted during study of the rich musical traditions of Africa. It is assumed that after completion of their studies, students with an interest in performing will work freelance, or will proceed to more specialised studies. The course units reflect this approach.
Structure of the HNC
The HNC is grouped under two main areas of study:
- music and musicianship
- cultural/related studies
The course is delivered on a full time basis and continuous assessment is carried out throughout. It is inevitable however, that assessments will take place near the end of the study period. The units that make up the HNC are identified in following table.
Unit title (Code)
The following units are mandatory and make up 8 credits of the 12 credits required
Working in the Creative Industries (DJ3A 34)
Creative Industries Infrastructure (DJ21 34)
Professional Practice for Musicians (H1LV 34)
Music Theory 1 (H1M7 34)
Music First Study 1: Instrument (F603 34)
Music: Graded Unit 1 (F508 34)
The following units are optional, 4 credits are required
Music: Live Performance Skills 1 (DJ2A 34)
Music Second Study 1: Instrument (DJ2X 34)
Music: Instrumental Accompaniment (DJ31 34)
Creative Project (DM0W 34)
Vocal Ensemble Singing: An Introduction (FN18 34)
Cultural Studies: An Introduction (FN1E 34)
Music: Arranging for Tuned and Non-Tuned Percussive Instruments (FN1F 34)
Music: Organising a Community-based Musical Activity (F5E6 13)
The HNC Music offers a progression from school and college studies such as NC units and Higher Music. In addition access is offered to learners who have acquired appropriate skills through self-study and involvement in musical activities outwith education.
Learners who have completed the necessary 12 credits will be awarded the HNC Music (African Music Studies).
Aims of the Award
- To promote the musical traditions and culture of Africa.
- To develop creativity and inventiveness when arranging compositions and/or when improvising African music.
- To develop the self-assurance and confidence required to succeed as a performing musician.
- To facilitate the access to further or specialised studies.
To meet the above aims the SAM will provide an environment in which each learner will, through study and experience, realise personal potential and develop the competences required of the performing musician.
Access to the HNC
Entry to the HNC is at the discretion of the directors.
The primary selection process is an audition and interview to determine the suitability of an applicant for entry. At the interview the applicant should demonstrate competence in the following:
- An aptitude for performing African percussion music;
- Spoken and written English equivalent to that required to pass Higher English;
- Musical literacy appropriate to the chosen instrument, ideally Higher Music;
- Basic numeracy;
- Good communication skills.
It is desirable that applicants applying for this course have basic technique on a percussion instrument. Furthermore, a firm grasp of the English language is necessary if cultural issues as well as legal and business concepts are to be understood. Also, anyone wishing to undertake this course must show by way of qualifications or portfolio to have more than performance skills to offer. If qualifications or a portfolio are not available, an assessment, by way of a written test, will be made at the time of the audition.