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Bath Spa University

Bath , England ,United Kingdom

M.A.- Sound Arts


The course caters for those working in a wide variety of music genres, and at the same time also covers areas of practice such as soundscape recording and sound design, interactive audio (for applications such as live performance, gaming, VR, immersive environments, and installations), spatial audio, hardware/software (instrument) design, and interdisciplinary practice incorporating other media.

Most students won’t cover all of these areas, but will use the course to develop an individually-tailored portfolio of skills, experience, and top-level work across them. We believe this to be appropriate to the current employment landscape, where many combine traditional roles in music with broader practice in sound and other media. The course also provides the breadth necessary for FE and HE teaching in this field, and provides a basis, where required, for PhD research and beyond.

A large number of options available within the course makes this choice and specialism possible. The course is part of a suite of courses available across music and sound, operating alongside "sister" pathways in Sound Design and Sound Production, which allow further specialism in these areas.

Course Structure 

Trimester one

Gain the skills you’ll need to fulfil the rest of the course

The Skills Portfolio module is built on the idea that you’ll already have technical skills in this area, but that students entering the course have differing skillsets, depending on background. It therefore allows you to choose a handful of skills projects from a large number of options – these cover skills right across the Sound Arts, Sound Design and Sound Production pathways and include (optional) elements of multimedia.

The Research Methodology and Context module develops skills in postgraduate-level research and writing. It is designed to give you the tools for an onward journey in academia, but not to be, in the colloquial sense, "academic". It encourages your research to be around the practical and creative elements core to your practice, and therefore to feed your creative work.

Trimester two

At the centre of trimester two, and MA Sound (Arts), is the Sonic Architecture module. This is intended as an expansion of traditional music composition teaching (an area in which we have long-standing expertise), where the aesthetic, rather than technical, aspects of individual work will be examined and developed. Through intensive tutorial support, you’ll be encouraged to explore your work at a structural level. Our teaching on this module recognises that spatial, multimedia, and interactive elements bring aesthetic challenges. We therefore offer a creative model that can be applied across the full range of artistic activity represented by the course.

Alongside this core module, you’ll be offered a wide range of options. The Visual Music module explores the idea that musical thinking can be extended to the visual, and encourages students to develop multimedia projects that explore this idea. Intertextuality in Sound Production, from the Sound Production pathway, explores the overlap between Urban Music production and what are considered more experimental genres. Post Production, from the Sound Design pathway, explores an industry-level workflow for Audio Post for picture. There are also choices in Composition, Performance, Musicolog,y and Professional Practice.

Trimester three

Trimester three represents the culmination of the course in an independent research project. While in most postgraduate courses, the equivalent module (often known as "the Master's module") will consist of a dissertation, in this case it comprises a large-scale practical project. It will fulfil the same function in allowing you to develop your own individual and original research area, but here through your practice. You’ll be able to use it to develop a body of practical work which will serve as a substantial portfolio for the next stage in your career.

Campus Information


There can’t be many campuses that rival Newton Park. The parkland estate has everything you’d expect from a modern university, as well as a castle and a lake. All this and it's only four miles from the buzz of central Bath.


  • Jan
  • Sep

Application Processing Time in Days: 30

Application Process

Visa Process
30 Days

Minimum English Language Requirements

English Level Description IELTS (1.0 -9.0) TOEFL IBT (0-120) TOEFL CBT (0-300) PTE (10-90)
Expert 9 120 297-300 86-90
Very Good 8.5 115-119 280-293 83-86
Very Good 8 110-114 270-280 79-83
Good 7.5 102-109 253-267 73-79
Good 7 94-101 240-253 65-73
Competent 6.5 79-93 213-233 58-65
Competent 6 60-78 170-210 50-58
Modest 5.5 46-59 133-210 43-50
Modest 5 35-45 107-133 36-43
Limited 4 32-34 97-103 30-36
Extremely Limited < 4 < 31 < 93 < 30

Job Opportunity Potential

We’ve got lots to share with you and to help we have split our work into three elements which will support you with:

  • Exploring your options
  • Gaining valuable experience
  • Progressing your ideas and career plans

At Bath Spa we believe you are continually exploring your options and experiencing different pathways to progression, but that this journey is not linear. It keeps on going throughout your time with us and when you leave. Some of our services cross all three areas and allow you to explore, experience and progress all in one, such as The Bath Spa Award.

We encourage you to read resources and attend events across all stages of Explore, Experience and Progress as they will offer beneficial insight and development opportunities regardless of the current stage you are at in your career journey.

PSW Opportunity

  • 2 Years PSW is applicable after the course completing (Bachelors level or above).

Admission Requirement / Eligibility Criteria

Normally a Second Class honours degree.


Normally a Bachelor's degree with honours and a good passing grade from an internationally recognised university or Higher Education institution
Other international qualifications to an equivalent standard will also be considered.

IELTS Academic 6.5 or 7.0

This must include a total of 75, to include a minimum 18 in Reading, 17 in Listening, 20 in Speaking, and 17 in Writing.

Our postgraduate courses have differing requirements depending on the course.  For specific information please see the course webpage.

For courses requiring IELTS 6.5, the PTE required score is 58 overall with at least 51 in each of Listening, Speaking, Reading and Writing.

For courses requiring IELTS 7.0, the PTE required score is 67 overall with at least 62 in each of Listening, Speaking, Reading and Writing.

We accept the LanguageCert International ESOL with an overall B2 Communicator Pass or High Pass (depending on the course)

  • Course Type: Full Time
  • Course Level: Masters/PG Degree
  • Duration: 01 Year  
  • Total Tuition Fee: 15070 GBP
    Annual Cost of Living: 9207 GBP
    Application Fee: N/A
Direct Represented