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Local student means; you are an Australian citizen or permanent resident, a New Zealand citizen or a permanent humanitarian visa holder.
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International student means; you are not an Australian citizen or permanent resident, a New Zealand citizen or a permanent humanitarian visa holder.

Bachelor of Songwriting and Music Production

VTAC Code: HECABSMP CRICOS: 090757J VTAC Number: Fairfield 6900368562

Overview

Campus
Campus
Duration

3 years full time / available part time

Duration

3 years

Next Intake

February, July

Next Intake

February, July

Take your artistry to the next level with our unique Songwriting and Music Production degree

If you are a songwriter, music producer, instrumentalist or freelance creative, our program encourages you to develop your 'voice' and supports your creativity in both study and real-world outcomes.

The Bachelor of Songwriting and Music Production is a unique degree for music artists. We offer songwriting, music production, and industry subjects in which you write, record, and release your music. Our diverse cohort is a welcoming music community, and our subjects are delivered on our Fairfield and Collingwood campuses by lecturers with active national and international industry careers.

This course differs from the Bachelor of Music in that it specialises in the creation, recording, and release of original material by songwriters and music producers.

A one-semester Undergraduate Certificate in Songwriting and Music Production is also available, either as a standalone qualification or as a pathway into the Bachelor.

If you have a Diploma or Advanced Diploma in Music Performance or Sound Production, you are eligible for course credits into the Bachelor of Songwriting and Music Production.

All subjects are taught by well-known music artists, producers, and experts in local, national, and international music scenes:

  • Sara Retallick is an artist, musician, and educator whose work explores listening and human perceptions of sound through installation, live performance, recording, and research.
  • Lisa Salvo is a songwriter/composer, performing artist based in Melbourne/Narrm who has been shortlisted for the APRA/AMCOS Vanda and Young international songwriting competition.
  • Andy White is a singer-songwriter, author, producer and academic whose work connects literate pop, folk, and punk over the course of twenty internationally released albums and three books.
  • Robin Waters is a producer, musician and solo artist who has worked with Ella Hooper, Kate Miller Heidke, Eves the Behavior, and Washington.
  • Robyn Doreian is a magazine journalist, educator, and former editor of British rock bibles Kerrang! and Metal Hammer. Her published interviews include Kurt Cobain, Keith Richards, Slipknot, Metallica, and Patti Smith.
  • Tony Dupé is a music producer, composer and academic who makes music that is distinctively organic, emotional, and connected to stories and places.
  • Louise Terry is an electronic music producer, community cultural development artist and educator who has cultivated a multifaceted career with groups including Sugar Fed Leopard and Sawtooth, as well as under artist name Louise Terra.

Our lecturers also currently include music artist and founder of I Manage My Music Jen Cloher, videographer Edwina Stevens, and vocalist and educator Georgie Darvidis.

Alumni

BSMP’s musical alumni include:

Attend an information session or apply now

Attend an information session to meet your program staff and learn more about the degrees.

Start your application by completing the short form. To get started click Book an Interview.

Bachelor of Songwriting graduate Mofiz Ul Haq writes and records under the artist name Vertex (spotify.com). In 2021 we were delighted that Mofiz was judged Melbourne Polytechnic's Higher Education Student of the Year. This clip gives you good insight into Mofiz's practice and the opportunities open to you in our degree course.

Download our Course Structure

Bachelor of Songwriting and Music Production Brochure

You can download our 2024 delivery of subjects here, and you can find the full choice of subjects in 'Units of Study' below.

Download

Career Pathways

Where will the Bachelor of Songwriting and Music Production take me?

The Bachelor of Songwriting and Music Production is focussed on creating exceptional music artists whose songs are at the heart of the music industry. As a music artist you need to be community focussed and engage with the industry. You may choose self-employment as a songwriter, composer, sound artist, record producer, audio engineer, musical performer, performance artist, artist manager or video clip maker. You might start your own record label or find work within existing businesses and organisations including those engaged in music media, publishing, streaming, arts administration, venue and festival activities.

Study Pathways

Graduates will be equipped to advance into post graduate study at other tertiary institutions

Course Details

Delivery methods

At present all classes are delivered either at our beautiful Fairfield campus, with its wide range of rehearsal rooms and recording spaces, or at our brand new Collingwood campus.

Class Schedule

Students enrolling for full-time study attend four three-hour classes per week each semester. There are 13 weeks in each of the two semesters per year. All classes take place on Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday between 10am and 5pm.

Please email us at BSMPadmin@MelbournePolytechnic.edu.au regarding timetable and for further information on undertaking the degree part-time.

Assessment Methods

Various forms of assessment may be used including song demos and recordings, essays, musical performances, class presentations, folio work, reflective journal/blogs and music clips.

Units of Study

Credit points are a basic measure of student workload. All subjects are given a credit point value. Most subjects at Melbourne Polytechnic are 12 credit points. A normal full-time annual workload is 96 credit points. The academic year is divided into two main semesters; full-time students usually enrol in 48 credit points each semester, part-time students usually enrol in 24 credit points each semester or less.

Code Subject Elective Description Year Semester
SMC101 Songwriting & Composition 1 Core In this subject, students are introduced to foundational methods and techniques of songwriting and composition. Through analysis, self-reflective critique and peer review, these methods and techniques are applied to the writing of songs/compositions in development.
SMC102 Music Production 1 Core This subject introduces students to foundational music production methods and techniques. Through self-reflective critique and peer review, these methods and techniques are applied to the recording of songs/compositions in development.
SMC103 Writing About Music Core In this subject, students examine music writing in journalism and in academic contexts. Critical reading practice and a diversity of writing techniques are applied to analysis, review, and industry-standard formats, equipping the student with skills necessary to communicate their own work and critique the work of other artists.
SMC104 Music Foundations Core In this subject, students examine foundational elements of music theory and techniques that can be applied to a range of styles. Melody, harmony and rhythm are analysed through traditional and non- traditional notation to enable the organization and communication of songs/compositions and to develop a shared musical language for use in solo and collaborative work.
SMC105 Songwriting & Composition 2 Core This subject investigates developmental contemporary methods and techniques of songwriting and composition. Through analysis, self-reflective critique and peer review, these methods and techniques are applied to the completion of a selection of songs/compositions.
SMC201 Songwriting & Composition 3 Core In this subject, students further engage with collaborative methods and techniques of songwriting and composition. Written analysis, self-reflective critique and peer review are applied in the development and presentation of a portfolio of songs/compositions.
SMC205 Songwriting & Composition 4 Core This subject examines advanced methods and techniques of songwriting and composition through analysis of key historical and contemporary exemplars. Written analysis, self-reflective critique and peer review are applied to the creation and completion of a portfolio of songs/compositions.
SMC106 Music Production 2 Core In this subject, students examine developmental music production methods and techniques. Through peer review and reference to contemporary context, these methods and techniques are applied to the creation of a selection of recordings.
SMC202 Music Production 3 Core In this subject, students research advancing music production methods and techniques and apply written analysis, self-reflective critique and peer review to the development and presentation of recordings.
SMC206 Music Production 4 Core Further expanding on the content of prerequisite subject Music Production 3, students engage advanced music production methods and techniques in the planning and completion of a self-directed production project.
SMC107 Independent Music Pathways Core This foundational subject prepares students for engagement with industry, outlining career pathways and engagement strategies, and planning for a future small-scale music project.
SMC108 Music Subcultures Core In this subject, students examine relationships between subcultures and music with focus on how musical and aesthetic conventions within subcultures influence genre and artistic identity. Analysis of historical and contemporary artists working within music subcultures is applied to the student's creative practice.
SMC203 Independent Music Artist Core In this subject, students analyse the role of the independent music artist in community, research local and national music organizations, and prepare visual and written supporting materials for a self-directed music project.
SMC204 Sound Studies Core Sound Studies engages students with theories, processes, and techniques relating to expanded fields of sonic practice such as experimental music, sound installation, and sound art. Listening, improvisation, and sound creation are explored through a series of lectures and workshops focused on experimentation and expanding perspectives on sound and music.
SMC207 DIY Music Release Core In this subject, students plan, develop and manage a self-directed DIY music release for online delivery, including the development and delivery of a marketing strategy with supporting visual and written materials.
SMC208 Performance Core This subject develops performance skills and capabilities in live and recorded music contexts. Communication and audience engagement methods are developed in class through self-reflective critique and peer review to inform an end of semester performance.
SMC301 Creative Studio 1 Core In this subject, students research and develop advanced songwriting and composition methodology through written analysis, self-reflective critique and peer review, in the creation and presentation of songs/compositions for a large-scale project and the establishment of a sustainable creative practice.
SMC303 Creative Studio 2 Core This subject builds on Creative Studio 1, consolidating advanced songwriting and composition methodology through written analysis, self-reflective critique and peer review in the completion of a portfolio of songs/compositions for a large-scale project and further development of a sustainable creative practice.
SMC302 Major Project 1 Core In this subject, students apply advanced music production methodology to the planning and development of a large-scale self-directed project.
SMC304 Major Project 2 Core Following on from Major Project 1, students research and develop multi-disciplinary support materials and manage the completion and delivery of a large-scale self-directed project. Analysis and self- reflective critique are applied to evaluation of the project.
SME301 Independent Label Elective In this subject, students plan and develop an online platform to support the release of a large-scale project, including support materials and analysis of branding and audience engagement strategies.
SME302 Art Project Elective In this subject, students engage with relationships between art-making and musical practice through a range of mediums, concepts, and creative approaches. An artwork employing diverse materials and methods is developed and presented to extend creative practice.
SME303 Lyrics Elective This third-year elective subject is a study of lyrics, poetry and spoken word, exploring methods and techniques shared by these related disciplines and applying them to practice. Through literary criticism and peer review, students develop a creative writing practice expressed through lyrics, poetry or spoken word performance.
SME304 Sound & the Moving Image Elective In this subject, students analyse sonic and visual relationships while applying informed compositional methods and techniques to generate soundtrack, foley and sound design for the moving image.
SME305 Music Clip Elective In this subject, students analyse the content and production process of music clips. Planning, conceptual development, pre- and post-production skills are researched and applied to the making of a music clip.
SME306 Sound in Space Elective This subject engages students with expanded sound presentation methods such as sound installation, spatial sound composition and public art. Students develop and present an artwork that engages space as a creative tool or presentation strategy.
SME307 Collaborative Performance Elective This third-year elective subject develops collaborative live performance skills and related materials. Performance practice is advanced through self-reflective critique and peer review and applied in group work to inform a collaborative end of semester public performance.
SME308 First Nations Music and Sound Elective This subject explores Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander perspectives relating music, sound and listening. Students research and produce a podcast episode that explores these concepts.

Fees & Costs

Fee-paying Places

Per year $19200
Per semester $9600
Per year $22600
Per semester $11300

When you are studying higher education courses you may qualify for FEE-HELP payments for part or all of your tuition fees. FEE-HELP loans do not cover materials costs.

Find out more information about FEE-HELP.

Fees displayed are effective for new applications received on or after 1st of November. Tuition fees do not include textbooks, course materials or overseas student health insurance and visa fees.

After initial deposit, international students are able to pay tuition fees in installments, four times per year.

For more detailed information please read the International Student Fees.

Please note: Part-time student fees will be based on a per-subject rate.
Bachelor of Songwriting and Music Production Brochure

Download our Course Structure

Have a look at our course structure to see the choice of subjects delivered and chart your progress through the degree.

Download the course structure pdf

Requirements

Selection for this course is based on applicants meeting specific criteria and successful outcome of an interview.

When the applicant initiates the application process, they will receive a Welcome Email containing a hyperlink to schedule an interview.

Register for interview and attend at the allocated day/time.

At interview applicants will be required to demonstrate:

  • An understanding of the study areas of the course
  • A clear purpose for undertaking the course, including future study and or career ambitions.
  • Recordings or a performance of two original musical works. Recordings or online links to streaming platforms may be submitted in advance via email.

Applicants with recent secondary education (within the past two years): Completion of VCE English with a study score of at least 20.

Applicants with Australian vocational education and training (VET) study: Students who have successfully completed a Diploma of Music Industry (Music Production or Music Performance) or Advanced Diploma of Music Industry (Sound Production or Music Performance) will receive specific first year subject credits.

Applicants with higher education: A complete or incomplete higher education qualification. Selection is based on satisfactorily meeting the interview requirements.

Applicants with work and life experience: Selection is based on satisfactorily meeting the interview requirements.

Higher Education Admissions Criteria

As well as the specific entry requirements above, Melbourne Polytechnic admits students on the basis of the following categories:

If you have already studied higher education: Y ou may meet the admissions criteria for higher education at Melbourne Polytechnic if your highest level of study since leaving secondary education is a higher education course, such as a university degree.

If you have studied a VET course: You may meet the admissions criteria for higher education at Melbourne Polytechnic if your highest level of study since leaving secondary education is a vocational education and training (VET) course.

If you have recent secondary education: You may meet the admissions criteria for higher education at Melbourne Polytechnic if you are a recent secondary education student whose admission is primarily based on the completion of Year 12 within the past two years.

If you have work and life experience: You may meet the admissions criteria for higher education at Melbourne Polytechnic if you have work and life experience and left secondary education more than two years ago and have not undertaken vocational education training (VET) or higher education study since then.

Read more about higher education admissions criteria.

Attend an interview.

Academic: Australian Year 12 equivalency
English: Academic IELTS 6.0 with no individual band below 5.5, Pearson PTE Academic 50 overall with no individual communicative skill below 42, or Melbourne Polytechnic recognised equivalency.
Other: Applicants will be required to present a folio of musical work at interview. Interviews and auditions by Skype or telephone are available for overseas applicants. For further information please email: BSMPadmin@melbournepolytechnic.edu.au
Applicants with Australian vocational education and training (VET) study
Students who have successfully completed a Diploma of Music Industry (Music Production or Music Performance) or Advanced Diploma of Music Industry (Sound Production or Music Performance) will receive specific first year subject credits.

Next Steps

Once you complete the short application form, you are asked to attend an interview to present your latest work with Bachelor of Songwriting and Music Production staff members to ensure that this is the right course for you.

When we receive your application, the International Office will be in contact with you shortly to discuss your application and provide you additional instructions.

If you'd like to speak to one of our International Office staff directly, call 1300 635 276

The degree placed me within a supportive and inclusive environment, where I had the right people to intuitively help guide my creativity and interests, and then further them into expression and confidence.
Alex Papworth
Bachelor of Songwriting and Music Production
Portrait of student Alex Papworth

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Local student means; you are an Australian citizen or permanent resident, a New Zealand citizen or a permanent humanitarian visa holder.