University of the Highlands and Islands

Applied Music BA Hons

This case study from the University of the Highlands and Islands explains the development of a highly networked and online Applied Music programme. Students based at campuses across the Highlands and Islands, and in and around Glasgow are taught using a mixture of face to face and online delivery. Key to creating a sense of belonging on this programme are face to face and virtual residencies in which students come together and collaborate on practical tasks.

Contributor: Anna-Wendy Stevenson

1. About this programme

Applied Music BAH is a four year honours undergraduate degree which is studied both full and part time. The programme is ‘networked’ which at UHI means that students can be based at any of UHI’s 13 Academic Partners, or choose to study from home. 

In the early stages of establishing the degree, many students articulated into year 2 of the degree from the HNC in Music which was offered as a face to face programme at our Lews Castle College Uist campus– there was demand from those completing the HNC who wishes to enrol on a degree programme and remain in the Hebrides, or flexible but linked to the Hebrides and focused on traditional music.  This resulted in a large cohort of students on the degree from this single location. 

As the degree has become established, there are now student cohorts at many different locations. Some students, however, still articulate directly into years 2 and 3 of the degree from HNC and HND, from both UHI and other institutions. 

There are currently 57 students on the programme, 10-15 for each year group. Students are spread across many of the University’s Academic Partners, along with a significant cohort of home-based students in and around Glasgow- this is the locus of many relevant professional activities (paid gigs, Celtic Connections etc.) and students on the programme are for the most part active musicians.