Elective units of study

Detail list

Graduate Electives

Different seminar options are offered each year normally on a rotating basis in the Graduate Seminar units of study. These may include - Psychology of Music, Musical Ability, Music Analysis, Music Performance: Perception Evaluation and Analysis, Postgraduate Music Technology and Multicultural Studies in Music Education. Please see the Associate Dean (Research Education) for further details.
CMPN5006 Recording Portfolio

Credit points: 6 Teacher/Coordinator: Dr Ivan Zavada Session: Semester 1 Classes: 2 hours lecture/Wk, 1 hour tutorial/Wk Assessment: Recording projects and class presentation (100%) Mode of delivery: Normal (lecture/lab/tutorial) day
This unit provides a practical introduction to recording projects. Aspects of creative production are examined alongside project planning, management and the professional delivery of master recordings to appropriate standards. The student, in consultation with their supervisor, will devise a program of practical recording projects. This program will integrate into the existing musical activities that occur at the Conservatorium and as such the hours will be flexible and may include, evening and weekend projects. In addition students will be required to attend and participate in a number of seminars/workshops.
CMPN5114 Graduate Vocal Composition Workshop

Credit points: 6 Teacher/Coordinator: Dr Paul Stanhope Session: Semester 2 Classes: 1 x 2hr lecture/seminar per fortnight, 1 x 8hr workshop in special projects week only Prohibitions: CMPN1010 Assessment: 1 x major composition work to the equivalent of 2500wds (40%), 2 x minor composition works to the equivalent of 1250wds (20%), overall class contributions (15%), 1 x 1500wd essay (25%) Mode of delivery: Normal (lecture/lab/tutorial) day
Vocal ensembles and choirs have become an important part of Australian musical fabric, from community-based groups through to professional a cappella ensembles. This seminar aims to provide necessary skills and experiences in composing for groups of voices in an experiential learning environment. Students workshop their compositions in class, gain experience in text-setting, experiment in extended techniques. Classes focus on the literary nature of the form and analyse relevant historical examples and techniques from a diverse range of styles. Students will be able to take these skills developed in this course into future professional situations as both composers and performers.
EMUS5600 Historical Performance Practice

Credit points: 6 Teacher/Coordinator: Professor Neal Peres Da Costa Session: Semester 2 Classes: 2hr/week Prerequisites: MCGY5610 Assessment: Attendance and class participation (20%), Short class presentation (20%), Lecture/Demonstration (40%), Written work (based on Lecture/Demonstration-3,000 words) (20%) Mode of delivery: Normal (lecture/lab/tutorial) day
This course examines historical performing practices up to the present day aiming to widen understanding of the extent to which musical notation and written evidence preserve the performing practices of past eras. The wealth of sound recordings from the turn of the twentieth century provides a window into the near past. Issues to explore include: sound production (vibrato, non-vibrato and portamento in the case of string and wind playing and singing), expressive keyboard techniques (manual asynchrony and arpeggiation), and more general issues such as tempo rubato, tempo modification, ornamentation, articulation, and phrasing. The course will introduce students to varying performance styles, some of which are no longer generally in fashion, increasing the palette of musical choices and solutions and increasing the dimensions of understanding of specific repertoire.
MCGY5600 Critical Discourses in Music

Credit points: 6 Teacher/Coordinator: Dr David Larkin Session: Semester 1 Classes: 1 x 2hr seminar/week Assumed knowledge: Because of the difficulty of the material, fluency in written and spoken English is required, and general familiarity with academic discourse about Western Art Music will be assumed. Assessment: 8 x summaries of readings (40%), 2 x critical evaluations of readings (20%), 1 x research essay (40%). Mode of delivery: Normal (lecture/lab/tutorial) day
This unit explores some of the most important theories on music and culture. It will introduce students to scholarly discourses and critical thinking potentially relevant to their own research. It will address questions such as what are we doing when we analyse music; how does our view of history shape our hearing and understanding; does music articulate collective human experience; etc. Topics covered include historiography, memory, musical analysis, semiotics, narrative theory, gender and sexuality, national identity, genre theory and hermeneutics.
MCGY5604 Researching Creative Process

Credit points: 6 Teacher/Coordinator: Dr Christopher Coady Session: Semester 2 Classes: 1 x 2hr seminar per week Assessment: Tutorial Participation/Demonstrated Knowledge of Required Reading (20%); Seminar Presentations (30%); Essay (50%) Mode of delivery: Normal (lecture/lab/tutorial) day
This unit of study aims to provide students with an overview of the intellectual and methodological trends underpinning artistic research in music - a field composed of both practice-based and practice-led research projects. Participating in this course will enable students to participate productively in artistic research by increasing their familiarity with current debates surrounding research integrity, the strengths and weaknesses of various methodological approaches and the narrative strategies artists employ in order to demonstrate research significance to a spectrum of stakeholders.
MUSC5600 Wagner and Critical Thought

Credit points: 6 Teacher/Coordinator: Dr David Larkin Session: Semester 2 Classes: 1 x 2hr seminar/week Assessment: 1 x 3000wd research essay (50%), 1 x 15min presentation (20%), 2 x reading responses (20%), overall seminar participation (10%) Mode of delivery: Normal (lecture/lab/tutorial) day
The number of eminent thinkers and artists who have engaged seriously with Wagner's art has no parallel in the field of music. In this unit we will scrutinise those aspects of his art and thought which provoked such strong reactions, by looking at critical responses from figures as divergent as Baudelaire, Mann, Adorno, Äi×ek and Scruton (to name but a few of those to be studied). By looking at what made his dramas so rich and provocative, students will come to see how music can be situated within various humanistic and political discourses, while still capable of providing pure escapist pleasure.
MCGY5601 Music Through Ethnography

Credit points: 6 Teacher/Coordinator: Dr Michael Webb Session: Semester 1 Classes: 2 x 2hrs per week Assessment: Written reports (30%); music transcriptions (10%); Analyses (15%); ethnographic interview (15%); Short field recording (10%); summary reflection/projection (20%) Mode of delivery: Normal (lecture/lab/tutorial) day
As an analytical method, ethnography concentrates on the experience of life as it is lived. Following the development of the fieldwork-based discipline of ethnomusicology, ethnographic approaches to music have come to examine: historical and archival data, objects and artefacts in collections, cyber networks, digital communications, and medical and therapeutic understandings of sound, among other aspects of everyday life. This unit of study engages ethnographic methodologies to examine the myriad ways music informs and enriches people's lives and contributes to defining how humans flourish in their natural, social and cultural environments.
PERF5600 Graduate Research Methods

Credit points: 6 Teacher/Coordinator: Dr Helen Mitchell Session: Semester 1 Classes: 2-hour seminar/week or equivalent Assessment: Assignments include research statement, literature review, seminar/poster presentation and, written project proposal (or other written task agreed with lecturer) (100%). Mode of delivery: Normal (lecture/lab/tutorial) day
This course is designed to prepare students for undertaking their own research projects in music. It will introduce and develop students' awareness of recent musical scholarship and research methodologies and equip students with skills to design and conduct research across a wide variety of musical topics. Students will begin exploration of the topic area that is the intended focus for their research during their degree. Students will situate their performance/composition research in the current field and present their research proposals to students and staff for discussion.
PERF5610 Arts and Creative Industries Placement

Credit points: 6 Teacher/Coordinator: Associate Professor Jennifer Rowley Session: Semester 1,Semester 2 Classes: 3 x 1hr seminar/semester Assessment: 1 x portfolio to the equivalent of 4000wds (50%), 1 x portfolio presentation (50%) Mode of delivery: Normal (lecture/lab/tutorial) day
Note: Department permission required for enrolment
The postgraduate Arts and Creative Industries Placment allows students to undertake a professional practice internship placement (including regional conservatoriums) within a music focused creative industry context. Students preparing for a career in composition, performance, arts administration, music education, historical studies etc. are afforded the opportunity to apply their advanced musical knowledge to the broader creative industries music community. They will undertake a specially designed internship placement (designed by themselves or the host) in an arts based organisation and/or 'buddy' Pulley program in one or more of the seventeen NSW regional Conservatoriums with the purpose of extending their current professional practice. The goal of the unit is for students to extend their knowledge of the arts and creative industries sector combined with a knowledge and understanding of WiL through the internship placement. Students will extend their collaborative skills and techniques for working in a teamwork setting using knowledge and skills learnt as graduates.
PERF5611 Graduate Seminar 1

Credit points: 6 Teacher/Coordinator: A/Prof Kathleen Nelson Session: Semester 1 Classes: 2-hour seminar per week or equivalent Assessment: Written work normally including an essay and seminar presentation or equivalent (100%). Mode of delivery: Normal (lecture/lab/tutorial) day
Note: Department permission required for enrolment
This is a special purpose elective. Note that some research areas may have particular requirements or recommendations for choice of seminars.
PERF5612 Graduate Seminar 2

Credit points: 6 Teacher/Coordinator: A/Professor Kathleen Nelson Session: Semester 2 Classes: 2-hour seminar/week or equivalent. Assessment: Essay and seminar presentation or equivalent (100%). Mode of delivery: Normal (lecture/lab/tutorial) day
Note: Department permission required for enrolment
This is a special purpose elective. Note that some research areas may have particular requirements or recommendations for choice of seminars.
PERF6613 Graduate Seminar 3

Credit points: 6 Teacher/Coordinator: A/Prof Kathleen Nelson Session: Semester 1 Classes: 2-hour seminar/week or equivalent. Assessment: Essay and seminar presentation or equivalent (100%). Mode of delivery: Normal (lecture/lab/tutorial) day
Note: Department permission required for enrolment
This is a special purpose elective. Note that some research areas may have particular requirements or recommendations for choice of seminars.
PERF6614 Graduate Seminar 4

Credit points: 6 Teacher/Coordinator: A/Prof Kathleen Nelson Session: Semester 2 Classes: 2-hour seminar/week or equivalent. Assessment: Essay and seminar presentation or equivaalent (100%) Mode of delivery: Normal (lecture/lab/tutorial) day
Note: Department permission required for enrolment
This is a special purpose elective. Note that some instrumental or research areas may have particular requirements or recommendations for choice of seminars. Note that some research areas may have particular requirements or recommendations for choice of seminars.
VSAO5022 Principles of Studio Pedagogy

Credit points: 6 Teacher/Coordinator: A/Professor Jennifer Rowley Session: Semester 1 Assessment: Oral presentation and case study report 40%, Micro lesson plan and 2000 word critical analysis reflection 40%, Portfolio task for professional practice 20% Mode of delivery: Normal (lecture/lab/tutorial) day
The unit promotes dialogue across teaching specialisations and focuses on three broad areas related to studio pedagogy. First, aspects of educational psychology, such as the cognition, motivation, and self-regulation will be examined within a developmental context. Second, the psychology of music will be applied to the development of musical performance and perceptual skills. Third, research on effective teaching within and beyond the music studio will be addressed, including aspects of cultural context, curriculum, and assessment. A critical engagement in a range of research literature and scholarly writing skills are developed throughout the unit of study. Online reading and research tasks through the LMS will be a part of this unit in preparation for students' electronic portfolio development. A practical implementation of pedagogical principles is practised through peer-teaching. Expert studio pedagogues from a variety of instrumental disciplines share their principles and practices in seminar classes.