MU6006 - Edition of Music

What will I learn on this module?

This module provides an opportunity to engage with scholarly, critical editing of music. You will develop the musical and analytical skills necessary to engage with written music texts, some of which may involve unfamiliar or archaic notation such as tablature. You will engage with current debates and thinking about editorial method and modes of presentation. Working with your supervisor, you will identify an editorial project and, with a high degree of motivation, you will produce an edition of music that will be not only of scholarly value but of practical use to performers. The process of editing will prepare you to be the kind of critical thinker who can focus on detail, and give you skills that will be transferable to other contexts such as further study, a profession related to Music and the graduate jobs market more generally.

How will I learn on this module?

You will be assigned a supervisor who is a specialist in the scholarly, critical editing of music. The pattern of supervision will adapt to the numbers of students taking the option and be responsive to the particular needs of each student. Some sessions will involve tutorials containing small groups of students in an environment in which peer support and encouragement is as important as input from the supervisor. In the early stages of the module, these will include sessions to develop the skills you need to engage in an editing project. One-to-one supervisions lie at the heart of the module, where you will be able to share work in progress and discuss editorial issues that arise.

How will I be supported academically on this module?

Your main support will come from your supervisor. Your supervisor will guide you in editorial methods, and on how to interpret written sources of music; will help you to identify a suitable project and to find resources to support your work (e.g. bibliographical material); will offer guidance on specific issues that arise in the course of your project, and discuss more general aspects of your work with you; will provide oral feedback on your progress, and written feedback on the first piece of assessment.

What will I be expected to read on this module?

All modules at Northumbria include a range of reading materials that students are expected to engage with. The reading list for this module can be found at:
(Reading List service online guide for academic staff this containing contact details for the Reading List team –

What will I be expected to achieve?

Knowledge & Understanding:
• You will demonstrate an in-depth knowledge of the history of scholarly music editions, and an up-to-date knowledge and understanding of editorial methods and issues
Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities:
• You will be able to devise, plan and manage a large-scale research project.
• You will have the ability to select relevant primary (mainly musical sources, manuscript and printed) and secondary materials from electronic, print and other relevant sources and use it effectively both for the music edition and supporting introductory material.
• You will demonstrate an ability to produce a scholarly, critical edition of music that has the potential to be used by professionals and/or amateurs in perfromance
Personal Values Attributes (Global / Cultural awareness, Ethics, Curiosity) (PVA):
• You will be able to work independently on a an edition that reflects your scholarly and musical interests, demonstrating determination through self-motivation.
• You will embrace self-critical awareness and feedback from others as you monitor your own progress, and be willing to support your peers by providing them with a critical appraisal of their work.
• You will demonstrate a close attention to detail and a methodical approach to your work which ensures a high degree of accuracy.

How will I be assessed?

There are three pieces of assessment. The first two are designed to help you prepare for the third, which is the dissertation itself.

1. Mid-semester 1: Editing exercise 1 (10%). This exercise will give you some experience of editing music. You will be provided with written feedback in the form of annotations to the edition, a written report form and discussion with your supervisor.
2. End of semester 1: Editing exercise 2 (10%). This exercise will give you some experience of editing a more extended passage of music, and in most cases will be related directly to the project. You will be provided with written feedback in the form of annotations to the edition, a written report form and discussion with your supervisor.
3. At the end of the second semester you will submit a substantial edition of music (80%). The exact make-up of the project will be negotiated in advance with your supervisor, who must approve the size and scope of the project in advance. Possible approaches include editing one source in its entirety (especially in the absence of concordances and/or the necessity to complete missing parts), and editing fewer pieces that survive in a greater number of sources where there is significant variation between the texts they contain.





Module abstract

The Edition of Music module provides an opportunity to engage with musical texts and the issues surrounding the creation of scholarly, critical editions of music that can be used in performance. It gives a behind-the-scenes insight into how music created in the past can be brought to new audiences through accessible, modern editions. Supervised by an expert in the field, you will work on an extended project resulting in an edition that can be used in performance.

Course info

UCAS Code W320

Credits 40

Level of Study Undergraduate

Mode of Study 3 years full-time or 4 years with a placement (sandwich)/study abroad

Department Humanities

Location City Campus, Northumbria University

City Newcastle

Start September 2024

Fee Information

Module Information

All information is accurate at the time of sharing.

Full time Courses starting in 2023 are primarily delivered via on-campus face to face learning but may include elements of online learning. We continue to monitor government and local authority guidance in relation to Covid-19 and we are ready and able to flex accordingly to ensure the health and safety of our students and staff.

Contact time is subject to increase or decrease in line with additional restrictions imposed by the government or the University in the interest of maintaining the health and safety and wellbeing of students, staff, and visitors, potentially to a full online offer, should further restrictions be deemed necessary in future. Our online activity will be delivered through Blackboard Ultra, enabling collaboration, connection and engagement with materials and people.


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