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University of Otago
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Bachelor of Music (MusB)

This course is available


Level of Study

Bachelor's Degree


3 years

Next start date

Expected Feb 2023


University of Otago


The Bachelor of Music (MusB) degree requires three years of full-time.

The programme for the degree does not have major subjects, although it may include a minor subject. It may be completed without any specified specialisation, or it may be endorsed in Composition, Performance, or Music Production.

Graduates of the degree have pursued careers in musical performance, recording industry, opera, teaching, media, theatre, music education, technology, and other related fields.

The programme totals 360 points and is mainly made up of Music papers but may include up to 90 points (usually five papers) in other subjects.

The programme requirements are:- 100-level covers:

  • MUSI 101 Materials of Music 1

One of

  • MUSI 102 Music in Western Culture
  • MUSI 103 Music in Popular Culture
  • MUSI 104 Music in World Cultures
  • MUSI 105 Music Matters

200-level: MUSI 201 Materials of Music 2

36 further 200- or 300-level MUSI points

300-level: 72300-level MUSI points

Plus: 198 further points, including at least 54 above 100-level, comprising:

  • 108 further MUSI points (for 18 of which MAOR 108, PERF 205 or PERF 305 may be substituted), and
  • 90 further points (any subject)

This programme does not have provision for major subjects. A programme may be completed without endorsement, or may be endorsed in one of the following areas of specialization if it includes the papers specified below.


  • MUSI 331 Composition Projects


  • MUSI 341 Performances 3 or MUSI 346 Professional Practice 3

Studio Production

  • MUSI 332 Music Technology 3
  • MUSI 334 Studio Production Projects

and one of

  • MUSI 203 Music and the Internet
  • MUSI 233 Electronic Music Production
  • MUSI 266 Music in Film and Gaming
  • MUSI 269 Global Pop
  • MUSI 303 Music and the Internet (Advanced)
  • MUSI 333 Electronic Music Production (Advanced)
  • MUSI 366 Music in Film and Gaming
  • MUSI 369 Global Pop

Bachelor of Music with Honours is also available.

The aim of the Bachelor of Music with Honours (MusB(Hons)) is to enable students to become highly skilled in one (or more) of the following fields of music: musical performance, composition, music research, and recording and production.

This degree equips Music students with the skills necessary for an advanced professional career that is in line with the demands of the modern music industry. It also provides opportunities for further academic study in musicology (research in an area of music studies) and opportunities for postgraduate study at Master's or PhD level.

Entry criteria

We recognise many other qualifications as equivalent to the New Zealand qualification for entrance.

We also accept the following international qualifications:

  • International Baccalaureate: IB Diploma with a minimum of 24 points.
  • Cambridge International Examinations (CIE) GCE Advanced Levels: minimum Numerical Score of 8

English language requirements

  • IELTS Academic - IELTS score of 6.0 in the academic module (with no individual band below 5.5). IELTS Online is also accepted.
  • Internet-based TOEFL - Score of 80 (writing 20)
  • Paper-based TOEFL - Score of 550 (TWE 4.5)
  • Cambridge Certificate in Advanced English (CAE) & Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE) - Overall score of 176 (with no individual band below 169)
  • CIE - E grade or higher in any one of AS English Language, AS Literature in English or AS Language & Literature in English; OR meeting the NCEA literacy requirements
  • GCE A or AS English Language, Literature in English, Language and Literature in English & GCE AS level General Paper (English) - Grade C or higher
  • IB - English at Higher or Standard level in Language A: literature, Language A: language and literature, or at Higher Level in Language B
  • Pearson Test of English (PTE) Academic - Overall score of 50 with no communicative skills score below 42.
  • LanguageCert - International ESOL: C1 Expert (LRWS) with a pass overall and no less than a pass in each skill
  • NZCEL - NZCEL 4 Academic endorsement
  • University of Auckland English Language Academy (ELA) pathway programmes - Successful completion of the English Pathway for Undergraduate Studies (EPUS) with a C Grade
  • University of Auckland Foundation Certificate in English for Academic Purposes (FCertEAP) - Successful completion of the certificate with a C Grade

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