What Doing A Music Degree Is Actually Like

Doing a Music Degree

I feel like, when you study an Arts based degree (or a Bachelors of Arts as people in the UK refer to it), you spend most your life fighting stereotypes that you sit around all day in your fairy land… Jokes go around our University that we only have 5 hours of lectures a week. But, I’m here to tell you the real image of what being a Music Student (in the UK) is really like.

You spend a lot of time doing music stuff that has to credit bearing on your degree; orchestras, choirs, chamber music, conducting, teaching, literally anything and everything you can do.

Your entire degree is very self-led. I had a friend who studied Maths with a minor in Music (yes I know, a weird degree, that’s one of the benefits of Southampton… any degree combination is open to you). She then gave up music only a semester into her first year because she was fed up that the Music lecturers spent the entire time focusing on how you should learn everything in your own time.

You have to be so self motivated. I’m not sure what it’s like in other degrees. However, you have so few contact hours that all your University work has to be done off your own back. You have to force yourself to do work, even when you don’t want to.

Let me know your experiences, if you have any.


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3 thoughts on “What Doing A Music Degree Is Actually Like

  1. This was so interesting to read! I do English Literature and Philosophy and I hate that the arts are seen as less work because so much of it is independent and relies on self motivation. I don’t know anybody that does music though – would love to hear more about it! xxx

    1. It’s one of those degrees that have been around a long time, and are considered one of the main subjects in school, but no one really gets it unless you actually study it. People have this impression that all we do is play music (which, if you go to a conservatoire, then yes, I guess you would). But, at an academic University, we spend only 20% of our time on performance, then you split the rest of your time over learning about the history of music, current music, jazz, composition, studio techniques (recording), arts politics, and arts marketing. For which you write a heck of a lot of essays 😛

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