SOAS University of London

Department of Music, School of Arts

BA in Global Popular Music

Fees 2018/19

UK/EU fees:
Overseas fees:

Fees for 2018/19 entrants. The fees are per academic year. Please note that fees go up each year. Further details can be found in the Fees and Funding tab on this page or in the Registry Undergraduate Tuition Fees page

2018 Entry requirements

  • Subjects Preferred: Three A levels or equivalent with BBB (or equivalent); Music A level is NOT required.

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  • Overview
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Programme Code: W301

Start of programme: September 2015

Mode of Attendance: Full-time

The BA Global Popular Music offers a unique programme that allows students to focus on popular and contemporary music styles and cultures in global perspective.

The degree includes regional modules that build on the expertise of SOAS staff in music in the Middle East, Asia and Africa, world music performance, practical skills modules in multimedia, approaches to the study of popular music, and opportunities for directed independent study projects on topics ranging from K-Pop to hip-hop, Latin to Rai.

The programme leads into careers and vocational pathways including arts management, festival administration and curating, music journalism, teaching, performing and composing, album production, and management and consultancy within the music industry in Europe, Asia and Africa.


Key Information Set Data


Programme Structure

Please note that a 15 credits module corresponds to a 0.5 unit (taught over one term) and a 30 credits module corresponds to a full unit (taught over both terms).

Students are required to take modules to the total value of 360 credits over the duration of their degree, 120 credits per year.  A 30 credits module will be taught over both terms, while a 15 credits module is taught over one term.  
Up to 90 credits may come from "open option modules" (modules outside of this programme - e.g. language or non-music modules), but only 30 credits of open option modules may be taken in each year.

Year 1

You will take six 15 credits introductory modules and up to 30 credits of open option modules.

Year 1 Compulsory Modules:
Year 1 Optional Modules:

Year 2

You will take one compulsory module and must choose one skills module in recording or in radio presenting and at least two modules on popular music (including, among others, Global Hip Hop, Pop and Politics in Israel, Music of Cuba. You can also select other modules offered within the Music Department (including generic modules such as Music and Gender, regional modules on musical traditions of Asia and Africa, and performance, available from the lists below, and up to 30 credits from our open option modules.

Year 2 Compulsory Module:

Year 3

You will take two compulsory modules and choose one skills module, one popular music module and other modules offered within the Music Department (including generic modules such as Music, Shamanism and Healing, regional modules, and performance, available from the lists below, and up to 30 credits from our open option modules.

Year 3 Compulsory Modules:
Year 1 Compulsory Modules
Module Code Credits Term Availability
Global Pop 155800089 15 Term 2
Music and Culture 155800060 15 Term 2
Performance 1b 155800062 15 Full Year
Sounds and Cultures 155800071 15 Term 1
Studying Popular Music 155800090 15 Term 1
Year 1 Optional Modules
Module Code Credits Term Availability
Performance 1a 155800061 15 Full Year
Great Works: art, films, literature, music 158100003 15 Term 2
Year 2 and 3 Area Modules
Module Code Credits Term Availability
Atlantic Africa: (P)Layers of Mediation in African Popular Music (UG) 155800095 15 Term 2
Classical singing in India: continuity and change 155800093 15 Term 2
Jaffa: Music and Urbanism in the Contested Middle East 155800091 15 Term 1
Mughal Arts: Sound, Text, and Image 158100005 15 Term 2
Music and travel on the Silk Road 158100006 15 Term 1
Music in Africa 155800022 30 Full Year Not Running 2018/2019
Music in Africa: Critical Listening - The Mande World 155800096 15 credits - 0.5 unit - Not Running 2018/19
Music in Africa: Musical Crosscurrents in East Africa and the Indian Ocean 158100007 15 credits - 0.5 unit - Not Running 2018/19
Music, Religion and Society in the Middle East and North Africa 155800092 15 Term 1 Not Running 2018/2019
Music, Religion and Society in South Asia 155800086 15 Term 1
Musical Traditions of East Asia 155800078 15 Term 2 Not Running 2018/2019
Pop and Politics in East Asia 155800077 15 Term 1 Not Running 2018/2019
Popular and Fusion Music in South East Asia (UG) 155800081 15 Term 2
Raga: concept and practice 155800087 15 Term 2 Not Running 2018/2019
The World of Cuban Music 155800058 15 Term 1
Year 2 and 3 General Modules
Module Code Credits Term Availability
Arts, Culture and Commodification: Themes in the Global Creative and Cultural Industries 158100001 15 Term 2
Composition 155800082 15 Term 1 Not Running 2018/2019
Critical Readings in Arts and Cultures 158100002 15 Term 1
Curating Global Arts 158100004 15 Term 2
Directed Study in Popular Music 155800088 0.5 - Not Running 2018/19
Gender and Music 155800073 15 Term 2 Not Running 2018/2019
Global Hip-Hop 155800084 15 Term 1
Introduction to Sound Recording 155800069 15 Term 1
Music, Shamanism and Healing 155800055 15 Term 1 Not Running 2018/2019
Presenting World Music On Radio 155800076 15 Term 2
The Music Business 155800053 15 Term 2
Project Modules
Module Code Credits Term Availability
Extended Essay in Music 1 155800066 15 Term 1
Performance Modules
Module Code Credits Term Availability
Performance 2 155800042 15 Full Year
Performance 3 155800045 30 Full Year


Teaching and Learning

Teaching & Learning

The Department of Music has been highly rated for teaching and research in all recent assessment exercises, and is regularly ranked amongst the top Music departments in the UK in Good University Guides.

The Department has a unique concentration of expertise in popular music of the major regions of Asia, the Middle East and Africa, and their diasporas. Its staff, research associates and teaching fellows have wide-ranging experience in the music industry, including the production of high profile albums, radio and print journalism, and concert and festival organisation.

Our students have access to the world renowned SOAS Library, which holds numerous books, journals and recordings relevant to the study of ethnomusicology and world music, as well as the nearby British Library Sound Archive and other London libraries and museums. The Department also maintains a large working collection of musical instruments from Asia and Africa.

Contact Hours

All full-time undergraduate programmes consist of 120 credits per year, in modules of 30 or 15 credits. They are taught over 10 or 20 weeks. The programme structure shows which modules are compulsory and which optional.

As a rough guide, 1 credit equals approximately 10 hours of work. Most of this will be independent study (see Approaches to teaching and learning at SOAS). It will also include class time, which may include lectures, seminars and other classes. Some subjects, such as learning a language, have more class time than others. In the School of Arts, most undergraduate modules have a one- or two-hour lecture or seminar every week. Some, but not all, also have a 1-hour seminar or tutorial every week.

More information is on the page for each module.

Fees and funding

Tuition Fees

Full details of undergraduate tuition fees can be found on the Registry's Undergraduate Tuition Fees page.

Fees for 2018/19 entrants. The fees below are per academic year. Please note that fees go up each year. 

Programme Full-Time
BA, BSc, LLB £9,250 £16,907
BA/BSc Language Year Abroad £1,385 £8,454
Undergraduate Research Awards

Application Deadline: 2018-04-30 00:00

For further details and information on external scholarships visit the Scholarships section


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