Exploring creative connections between sound and science
Offered to 1st years
8 weeks (autumn or spring term)
This module covers sound and music with a focus on its contexts in biology, physics, maths, engineering and technology. This interdisciplinary module shows how music and science are connected on a fundamental level. The Sound Technology module also offers you the opportunity to create electronic music using state-of-the-art equipment.
The practical aspects of the module are embedded in a theoretical and analytical framework which encourages the critical evaluation of contemporary music. Sound technology bridges artistic practice and cutting-edge technology, providing a platform where students can discover, develop and explore scholarship in the field as well as being creative, both individually and as part of a group.
- Awareness of how recording technology is used to capture and manipulate sounds
- Understanding of introductory concepts in sound theory, psychoacoustics and room acoustics
- Present individual and group work to peers and respond to constructive feedback from facilitator and other learners
- Apply basic compositional processes through the creation of an original composition or field recording as part of the assessed portfolio
- Apply key concepts, research, and feedback to write an analytical sound technology essay
Indicative core content
- Sound, psychoacoustics and the brain: the physics and psychology of how we perceive music
- Capturing sounds: introduction to transducer design and various microphone techniques devised to capture sound
- Acoustics and studio design: the basics of acoustics and how to apply those concepts to optimize spaces for music production and music performance
- Introduction to MIDI sequencing: recording, editing and arranging using midi in Cubase
- Introduction to digital audio, sampling and effects: recording, importing and editing digital audio in Cubase and the use of effects
- Music composition in the digital age: use critical listening to have a basic understanding of both high art and popular music composition
- Music and medicine, basic overview of how sound and music are linked to current medical practice
- Group presentations by students exploring the intention, context, structure, production techniques and effectiveness of a piece of contemporary music
- Original composition or field recording accompanied by supporting written work. (audio approx. 5 min. and written work approx. 700 words) (70%).
- Group class presentation: Basic analysis of a commercially released composition (30%).
- ECTS value: 0
- Requirements: You must be prepared to attend all classes and to spend about an hour a week preparing for each session
- This module is designed as an undergraduate Level 4 module. See Imperial Horizons level descriptors [pdf]
"The sessions are stimulating and engaging."
"Really enjoyed the module, particularly the work on acoustics and the session with the music therapist. It was a good introduction to music tech."
"I enjoyed the interactive mini-lectures, particularly the ones which focused on the way we hear, and the physics of sound waves"
"Loved the course so much. Will definitely go back to music tech."