MUSA121-19S1 (C) Semester One 2019

Notated Composition 1A

15 points
18 Feb 2019 - 23 Jun 2019


Developing students’ skills in creating and notating contemporary art music for live performance (vocal and instrumental), and building knowledge of compositional techniques and procedures.

MUSA121 introduces elementary compositional techniques and procedures applicable to a range of musical genres. The course also emphasises verbal articulation skills regarding compositional goals and methods. Students will set their compositional goals and develop self-reflective critical commentary about their own creative work.

Students will compile a portfolio of works together with associated drafts, documentation and reflective commentary. They will also gain an analytical understanding of works from the contemporary notated composition canon.

Learning Outcomes

  • Students who pass this course will have:
  • Developed analysis and commentary skills relating to contemporary practice;
  • Developed skills in the articulation of personal composition goals, and writing programme notes for own work;
  • Developed composition style and procedure knowledge derived from analysis of works from contemporary notated composition canon;
  • Refined self-reflective skills regarding the creative process and the development of compositions.

    Transferable skills:
    The ability to work in a disciplined and persistent way on an individual project;
    Peer review skills;
    The ability to criticise one’s own work.
    • University Graduate Attributes

      This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attributes specified below:

      Critically competent in a core academic discipline of their award

      Students know and can critically evaluate and, where applicable, apply this knowledge to topics/issues within their majoring subject.


Application via portfolio submission, and approval by Head of School. The portfolio should contain approximately three notated works that demonstrate the applicant's compositional style and strengths to date. It should include notated scores for each composition (handwritten or computer typeset), and may also include recordings and/or MIDI files. While the MusB degree does not have a special deadline, there is a deadline for submission of portfolio of the first Friday in November of the previous year.



Timetable 2019

Students must attend one activity from each section.

Lecture A
Activity Day Time Location Weeks
01 Tuesday 10:00 - 11:00 Fine Arts 122 18 Feb - 7 Apr
29 Apr - 2 Jun
Lecture B
Activity Day Time Location Weeks
01 Thursday 10:00 - 11:00 Fine Arts 122 18 Feb - 7 Apr
29 Apr - 2 Jun
Tutorial A
Activity Day Time Location Weeks
01 Tuesday 14:00 - 15:00 Fine Arts 122 18 Feb - 7 Apr
29 Apr - 2 Jun
Workshop A
Activity Day Time Location Weeks
01 Monday 15:30 - 17:00 Arts Centre G15 Recital Room 18 Feb - 7 Apr
29 Apr - 2 Jun

Timetable Note

Students must attend one activity from each section.

Timetable Note:
Student workload (150 hours) will be allocated to:
• 24 hours attending lectures
• 18 hours attending composition workshops
• 12 hours attending tutorials
• 20 hours completing analytical exercises
•  6 hours completing workshop diary
• 70 hours drafting and writing (and possibly recording or realising) portfolio content

Lectures will be held on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 10am, and tutorials will follow the Thursday lectures. It is expected that all students enrolled in this course will attend all the Composition workshops.

Course Coordinator / Lecturer

Reuben de Lautour


Hamish Oliver


Assessment Due Date Percentage 
Analysis Assignment 1 10%
Composition no 1 draft 10%
Analysis Assignment 2 10%
Portfolio 50%
Workshop Diary 20%

There are two analysis assignments, a portfolio containing three works, and a workshop diary for this course.  A full draft of the first composition has an independent deadline as noted below – after feedback, and with revision, that work should be included in the final portfolio.

In addition to the assessments listed above you must present at least one of your portfolio works in a composition workshop during semester. This is a compulsory requirement for the course.

All assessments are due by 12pm on the specified date, and should be submitted through the LEARN system. Late work will be accepted up to one week after the deadline with a 10% penalty.

Indicative Fees

Domestic fee $850.00

International fee $3,775.00

* Fees include New Zealand GST and do not include any programme level discount or additional course related expenses.

For further information see Humanities and Creative Arts.

All MUSA121 Occurrences

  • MUSA121-19S1 (C) Semester One 2019