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Bachelor of Music

STARTS: February 2023
Madras Street

Prepare to thrive as a professional musician.

Our Bachelor of Music covers all the skills and knowledge you need to be a multi-faceted professional musician. It’s built around collaboration - you’ll learn the foundational skills and apply them in group projects and classes that directly mirror the real world of the music industry.

The programme focuses on the practical; even the ‘academic’ subjects are taught in a style that relates directly to the practical application of those subjects. More than half the programme content is practical in nature, a higher proportion than most music degrees in New Zealand. With such a focus on the practical, you’re a musician from day one at Ara.

The degree offers three pathways: Music Creation (composition), Music Performance and Music Production. This choice lets you specialise in the area you’re passionate about, while learning alongside and working with musicians from other pathways. Your third-year capstone project allows you to design your own major project (which can include a work placement if relevant) with dedicated specialist tutor support.

At Ara you’ll learn from a great team of tutors who are each also professional, working musicians. They perform, write and record across the country, from the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra to Salmonella Dub and everything in between.

Fees for 2022

Domestic Fee
$7,017 - $7,831 per year
International Fee
$22,944 per year
International Insurance
$553 per year
Indicative Student Services Fee
$324 per year

University Entrance: NCEA Level 3 (60 credits at level 3 and 20 credits at level 2 or higher) which must include 14 credits at Level 3 in each of three approved* subjects and:

  • Literacy* - 10 credits at Level 2 or above, made up of 5 credits in reading, 5 credits in writing,
  • Numeracy* - 10 credits at Level 1 or above (specified achievement standards, or unit standards 26623, 26626, 26627)

OR New Zealand Certificate in Music (Level 4)

  • OR New Zealand Certificate in Performing Arts (Level 4)

Due to Covid-19 disruption, if you studied and achieved NCEA Level 3 during 2020, you only need 12 credits per Level 3 subject (i.e. total of 36 credits). Literacy and Numeracy requirements remain the same

If you have undertaken examinations other than NCEA (e.g. International Baccalaureate, Cambridge Examination), Ara will assess your qualification for academic entry equivalency.

* NZQA approved subjects: see http://www.nzqa.govt.nz/qualifications-standards/awards/university-entrance/

You are also required to:

  • Attend an audition to evaluate musical skills (Music Performance pathway). The audition will include a theory test, an aural test, a performance and an interview
  • Supply a portfolio of musical outputs (Music Creation / Music Production pathways) and attend an interview / theory / aural test
  • Provide two referee reports that show good character, suitability for the programme and ability to study (all pathways)
  • Include a written statement outlining relevant work experience, interests, strengths, skills and community involvment (all pathways)
  • Complete the Additional Requirements Form

Still want to study but don't meet the Academic Requirements?

If you show that you have equivalent skills for tertiary study gained through study, work and/or life experience, you may be able to gain alternative entry.

Note: The number of courses you have to complete for this qualification may be reduced where you have relevant credits from previous study, or evidence of similar learning or experience in the workplace.

What if English is not my first Language?

Overall IELTS 6.0 Academic

  • 5.5 Listening
  • 5.5 Reading
  • 5.5 Writing
  • 5.5 Speaking

All applicants are sbject to a selection process to ensure suitability for this degree

Applicants are auditioned, which includes a theory test, an aural test, a performance and an interview

The audition panel is comprised of the programme leader and specialist tutors from the degree programme. Applicants are ranked based on their audition score.

Depending on that ranking, applicants will be offered a place in the degree (or another programme) subject to any pending entry requirements being met (NCEA results etc)

An offer of place on the degree may be conditional on the completion of a short course (e.g. summer theory school) or other recommended tuition

To ensure a balanced programme, specific numbers of each instrument are accepted each year

Those who are not initially accepted but who meet the standard are waitlisted in order of ranking (within those instruments)

Funding assistance

If you face unexpected financial hardship during your studies, we have several funds that you can apply for. These are designed to enable you to continue your current course of study. We also have a wide range of scholarships and awards that can provide financial assistance.

Find out more
 
Core courses
 
Elective courses

Career opportunities

More than ever, music is a portfolio career and this degree sets you up perfectly to excel in the ‘gig economy’. As a graduate you’ll possess a comprehensive and varied set of skills, backed up by a working knowledge of the industry and how to establish your place within it.

Possible career outcomes include:

Professional musician

Performer, composer, songwriter, arranger, musical director, instrumentalist, music consultant, music contractor.

Professional performance

Performer, singer, songwriter, band or orchestra member, backing musician, soloist, cruise ship performer, studio session musician, theatre pit orchestral player, private or commissioned performer (e.g. wedding/corporate event, hotel and tourism).

Creative industries

Composer (multimedia, film soundtrack/scores, advertising jingles, documentary/TV series), performer/producer, broadcast composer (music library composition and production), theatre and installation sound designer, music producer, computer/website/gaming music composer, music software developer, performance art exponent, presenter.

Education

Music teacher, music tutor/lecturer, music therapist, musicologist, ethnomusicologist.

Events and music management

Event planner, venue management, promoter, artist manager.

Study pathways

As a graduate of this programme you can continue your studies with Ara’s Master of Creative Practice or a postgraduate qualification in music from any other institute. You could also move into teaching with a postgraduate diploma in education. Music therapy or sound engineering could be other options, with further study.

Bachelor of Music

FULL-TIME - 3 Years

Prepare to thrive as a professional musician.

Information
Type Degree
Code CH4087
Next Starts February 2023
May be available for Study Visa? Yes
Credits 360
Level 7
May be eligible for Studylink? Yes
Available Part time Yes
Reference CH4087-MAIN

Fees for 2022

Domestic Fee
$7,017 - $7,831 per year
International Fee
$22,944 per year
International Insurance
$553 per year
Indicative Student Services Fee
$324 per year
Enquire Now View Dates & Apply
Music Production - Bachelor of Music - Yr 1 - Feb 2023 - Christchurch
Start date: 27 February 2023
Apply
Music Performance - Bachelor of Music - Yr 1 - Feb 2023 - Christchurch
Start date: 27 February 2023
Apply
Music Creation - Bachelor of Music - Yr 1 - Feb 2023 - Christchurch
Start date: 27 February 2023
Apply

With an internationally-recognised Ara qualification, the world is your oyster. Our graduates can be found working and making a difference across the globe…

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Additional Entry Requirements

You are also required to:

  • Attend an audition to evaluate musical skills (Music Performance pathway). The audition will include a theory test, an aural test, a performance and an interview
  • Supply a portfolio of musical outputs (Music Creation / Music Production pathways) and attend an interview / theory / aural test
  • Provide two referee reports that show good character, suitability for the programme and ability to study (all pathways)
  • Include a written statement outlining relevant work experience, interests, strengths, skills and community involvment (all pathways)
  • Complete the Additional Requirements Form

See overview for more

Credit Recognition

If you have prior relevant experience or previous related study credits, you may be eligible for credit recognition towards this qualification.

Find out more

Documents

Area of Interest

Key Information for Students

Need some help picking the right course for you?

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