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Italian and Music BA

UCAS code RW33
Year of entry 2017
  View 2018 entry »
Course Length 4 years full time
Department Modern Languages, Literatures and Cultures »
Music »

This Joint Honours course combines Italian language, culture and literature with the study of Music. You will divide your time equally between the two subjects and spend the third year abroad in Italy.

As a student of Italian, you will not only learn to speak and write fluently, you will also develop excellent communication and research skills and combine language proficiency with cross-cultural perspectives. 

You will be able to tailor your study of Italian to suit your specific areas of interest, gaining a greater understanding of Italian visual and musical arts, fashion and design, philosophy, literature, politics and history including topics such as Dante or Renaissance art.

You will also have the exciting opportunity to spend a year working, teaching or studying in Italy at a partner university, teaching placement at an Italian school or work placement in business or industry.

  • Whether you are a beginner or advanced student when you start, by the time you graduate you will be fluent in Italian: confident in reading, understanding and analysing text and able to write with ease and accuracy.
  • Our research staff are engaged in research at the highest level internationally; we are in the top 10 of UK Modern Language departments for research quality and the top in London (Research Assessment Exercise 2014).

Studying Music at Royal Holloway allows you to tailor your studies to your own interests and passions.

We have expertise spanning traditional, modern and world music. Through studying musical texts, practices, cultures and institutions you will explore issues in history, sociology, ethnology, and philosophy covering an exceptional geographical and chronological range. You will also be able to gain practical skills in composition, music technology and performance.

You will join a music department that is among the very best in the country, ranked third in the UK for research quality (REF 2014) and the only music department in the country to hold a prestigious Regius Professorship.

  • You will have access to well-equipped studios and recording facilities as well as incredible performance spaces including the Windsor Auditorium, Boilerhouse Theatre, Victorian Picture Gallery and College Chapel.
  • Our well connected department means you have the opportunity to make valuable music industry contacts. Our staff are connected with musical networks such Wigmore Hall, the BBC Proms, Royal Opera House.

Core modules

Year 1

Italian: Intensive Italian for Beginners

This is your core Italian language module (beginners’ pathway). It comprises a written and an oral component. There are five hours of seminars per week in which a communicative approach is adopted and the teaching is carried out in Italian whenever possible. Grammar is taught in context in accordance with your specific needs as they arise. In the oral component, you will learn to speak about set topics related to everyday matters by completing set activities including listening comprehension and role play.

Italian: Advanced Italian Language 1

This is your core Italian language module in which you will develop your skills in writing, speaking and comprehending the Italian language. There are three hours of seminars per week as well as a grammar lecture taught fortnightly. The lessons are taught using a communicative approach and are conducted in Italian. In all parts of the module there will be a focus on learning in a cultural context, and in addition to formal grammar teaching you will develop your language skills by reading and analysing a variety of texts, articles, films, and recordings. Learning activities will include listening comprehension exercises and role play.

Year 2

Italian: Advanced Italian 2 for Post Beginners 

This is your core Italian language module (beginners’ pathway). It comprises a written and an oral component. There are five hours of seminars per week in which a communicative approach is adopted and the teaching is carried out in Italian whenever possible. You will continue to develop your Italian language skills through reading comprehension, commentary writing as well as translation from English into Italian. You will also analyse articles from Italian newspapers and podcasts related to social, cultural and political issues in contemporary Italy, and take part in informal debates during which you will practise expressing your opinions in Italian.

Italian: Advanced Italian 2

This is your core Italian language module in which you will continue to develop your skills in writing, speaking and comprehending the Italian language. There are three hours of seminars per week as well as a grammar lecture taught fortnightly. The lessons are taught using a communicative approach and are conducted in Italian. You will practise reading comprehension, commentary writing and translation from English into Italian, and will again analyse articles from Italian newspapers and podcasts related to social, cultural and political issues in contemporary Italy. You will also continue to work intensively on key aspects of grammar.

Year 3

The third year of this degree programme will be spent abroad, either studying or working or both. It is usually expected that students will spend at least 9 months overseas, in countries where the native langauges match the languages the student is studying. Students studying two langauges will be expected to divide their time between two relevant countries, i.e. one for each langauge. The School of Modern Languages, Literatures & Cultures will support students in finding a suitable study or work placement, but students are also expected to explore opportunities independently and the ultimate responsibility for securing such a placement lies with the student. Alternatively students may choose to enrol for courses at a partner university in the relevant country. This year forms an integral part of the degree programme; students on placement will be asked to complete assessed work which will be credited towards their degree, while in the case of those studying at a university, marks obtained for courses taken will be credited towards their degree. The same applies to the assessment of spoken language on return to Royal Holloway from the period of residence abroad.

Year 4

Italian: Advanced Italian 3

This is your core Italian language module in which you will continue to develop your skills in writing, speaking and comprehending the Italian language. There are three hours of seminars per week as well as a grammar lecture taught fortnightly. The lessons are taught using a communicative approach and are conducted in Italian. In this module you will practise translation from English into Italian/Italian into English, focusing on a variety of texts types including journalism, fiction and history, as well as learning about theoretical aspects of translation. You will also continue to work intensively on key aspects of grammar.

Optional modules

In addition to these mandatory course units there are a number of optional course units available during your degree studies. The following is a selection of optional course units that are likely to be available. Please note that although the College will keep changes to a minimum, new units may be offered or existing units may be withdrawn, for example, in response to a change in staff. Applicants will be informed if any significant changes need to be made.

Year 1

Italian: The Heritage of Dante and the Renaissance

Italian: Building the Italian Nation - Heroes and anti-Heroes from Pinocchio to the Leopard

Music: Theory and Analysis

Music: Practical Musicianship

Music: Creative Composition Techniques

Music: Practical Composition Skills

Music: Very Short History of Music

Music: Introduction to Historical Musicology

Music: Introduction to World Music

Music: Contemporary Debates in Music

Music: Solo Performance

Music: Creative Ensemble Performance

Year 2

Italian: Dante's Comedy - Themes And Ideas

Italian: Postwar Italian Cinema

Italian: Art and Literature in Renaissance Florence

Italian: Italian Crime Fiction

Italian: Boccaccio - Decameron

Music: Studies in Music Analysis

Music: Studies in Composition

Music: Studies in Music History

Music: Studies in Ethnomusicology

Music: Studies in Music, Media and Technology

Music: Practical Performance

Music: Solo Performance

Music: Ensemble Performance

Music: Composition Portfolio

Music: Ensemble Performance in World Music - Andean Band

Music: Choral Conducting

Music: Baroque Performance Practice

Music: Composing with Technology

Music: Composing with Technology

Music: Sounds and Cultures in East Asia

Music: Introduction to Jazz

Music: Popular Music and Musicians in Post-War Britain and North America

Music: Orchestral Conducting

Music: Orchestral Performance

Music: Practical Ethics

Music: Wagner's Ring

Music: Issues in Sound, Music and the Moving Image

Music: Sibelius and Music of Northern Europe

Music: Music in the City

Music: Music, Environment and Ecology

Music: Music, Power and Politics

Music: Ideas of German Music from Mozart to Henze

Music: Silent Film Performance

Music: Music and Gender

Music: Debussy and French Musical Aesthetics

Year 4

Italian: Dante - Divine Comedy 2

Italian: Of Women, Knights, Weapons and Loves - the Italian Chivalric Tradition

Italian: Shooting History - Dictatorship, Terror and Crime in Italian Film

Italian: Approved Topic

Italian: Italian Fashion and Design

Italian: The Postmodern In Italian Literature - Pioneers, Practitioners and Critics

Italian: From Aestheticism to the Avant-Garde

Music: Studies in Music Analysis

Music: Studies in Composition

Music: Studies in Music History

Music: Studies in Ethnomusicology

Music: Studies in Music, Media and Technology

Music: Practical Performance

Music: Solo Performance

Music: Ensemble Performance

Music: Composition Portfolio

Music: Ensemble Performance in World Music - Andean Band

Music: Choral Conducting

Music: Baroque Performance Practice

Music: Composing with Technology

Music: Composing with Technology

Music: Sounds and Cultures in East Asia

Music: Introduction to Jazz

Music: Popular Music and Musicians in Post-War Britain and North America

Music: Orchestral Conducting

Music: Orchestral Performance

Music: Practical Ethics

Music: Wagner's Ring

Music: Issues in Sound, Music and the Moving Image

Music: Sibelius and Music of Northern Europe

Music: Music in the City

Music: Music, Environment and Ecology

Music: Music, Power and Politics

Music: Ideas of German Music from Mozart to Henze

Music: Silent Film Performance

Music: Music and Gender

Music: Debussy and French Musical Aesthetics

Music: Practical Performance 2

Music: Composing with Technology 2

Music: Special Study - Dissertation

Music: Special Study - Theory and Analysis

Music: Special Study - Performance

Music: Special Study - Composition

The course has a modular structure, whereby students take 14 course units at the rate of four per year in years 1, 2 and 4, and two units during the year abroad. Some course units are compulsory while others are elective thereby offering flexibility and choice.

Assessment is by a mixture of coursework and end-of-year examination in varying proportions, depending on the course units you choose to take. The first year is foundational and marks do not count towards your final degree. The second year, year abroad and final year marks do count, with more importance being given to the final year marks in order to reward progress and achievement.

Typical offers

Typical offers
A-levels AAB-ABB

The offer given will take into consideration

  • subjects taken at A level
  • the educational context in which academic achievements have been gained
  • whether the Extended Project Qualification is being taken. 
Required/preferred subjects Required: Grade A in Music A-level or Grade 8 Music Theory at Pass and if Italian is taken at A-Level, a grade B is required, as well as five GCSE passes graded A*- C including Maths and English.
Other UK Qualifications
International Baccalaureate 6,5,5 at Higher Level including grade 6 in Music at Higher Level with 32 points overall. If Italian is taken at Higher Level a grade 5 is required. If Music is not studied at Higher level Grade 8 Music Theory at Pass is accepted.
BTEC Extended Diploma Distinction, Distinction, Distinction in a relevant subject, plus A level Music grade A, or Music Theory grade 8. 
BTEC National Diploma Distinction, Distinction in a relevant subject plus A in A level  Music or Distinction, Distinction in a relevant subject plus one A level grade B and Music Theory grade 8.
BTEC Subsidiary Diploma Distinction plus two A levels grades A,B including Music grade A. If Italian is taken at A level, a grade B is required.If Music is not studied at A level Grade 8 Music Theory at Pass is accepted.
Welsh Baccalaureate Requirements as for A-levels where one non-subject-specified A-level can be replaced by the same grade in the Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate
Scottish Advanced Highers AB including A in Music If Italian is taken at Advanced Higher Level, a grade B is required plus Higher Level requirements.If Music is not studied at Advanced Higher level Grade 8 Music Theory at Pass is accepted.
Scottish Highers AABBB plus Advanced Higher Level requirements.
Irish Leaving Certificate H2, H2, H3, H3, H3 at Higher Level at Higher Level including H2 in Music.  If Italian is taken at Higher Level, a grade H3 is required.  If Music is not studied at Higher level Music Theory Grade 8 is accepted.
Access to Higher Education Diploma Pass with at least 30 level 3 credits at Distinction and 15 level 3 credits at Merit PLUS evidence of A-Level standard Music proficiency grade A equivalent or Grade 8 Music Theory at Pass. Please note that the Access to Higher Education Diploma will only be acceptable if the applicant has had a considerable break from education.

Other UK qualifications

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International and EU entry requirements

Please select your country from the drop-down list below

English language
requirements
IELTS 6.5 overall with 7.0 in Writing and minimum of 5.5 in all other subscores. For equivalencies please see here.

For more information about entry requirements for your country please visit our International pages. Royal Holloway offers an International Foundation Programme and pre-sessional English language courses, allowing students to further develop their study skills and English language before starting their undergraduate degree.

On completion of this joint degree you will be a modern linguist and a creative and adaptable thinker with impressive communication and leadership skills. You’ll have an understanding of music from a variety of perspectives, and industry contacts, insider knowledge of music networks in London and specific practical skills in performance, composition and production. Having spent a year abroad you’ll also have developed the kind of sensitivity to different cultures that is highly prized in the workplace. This experience and the skills gained will appeal to future employers.  

  • Full time employment or further study achieved by 80% of Italian graduates and 95% of Music graduates within six months of graduation (Unistats 2015). 
  • Graduates have entered a wide range of careers including many language-related fields, such as: international management, consultancy, sales and marketing, media and publishing, banking, the arts, politics, the Civil Service, teaching, travel and tourism, translating and interpreting. Other graduates have gone into more creative careers such as musicians, composers and performing arts teachers.

Home and EU students tuition fee per year 2017/18*: £9,250

International students tuition fee per year 2017/18**: £15,600

Other essential costs***: Music - £50

The cost of your year abroad will vary by country. Typical living costs to consider will be accommodation, food and household items, entertainment, travel, books and bills (including your mobile phone). You'll also need to budget for travel to and from your country of study. Additional costs compared to studying in the UK will also depend on personal choices and it is important to research the cost of living before the year commences.

How do I pay for it? Find out more.

*Tuition fees for UK and EU nationals starting a degree in the academic year 2017/18 will be £9,250 for that year. This amount is subject to the UK Parliament approving a change to fee and loan regulations that has been proposed by the UK Government. In the future, should the proposed changes to fee and loan regulations allow it, Royal Holloway reserves the right to increase tuition fees for UK and EU nationals annually. If relevant UK legislation continues to permit it, Royal Holloway will maintain parity between the tuition fees charged to UK and EU students for the duration of their degree studies.

**Royal Holloway reserves the right to increase tuition fees for international fee paying students annually. Tuition fees are unlikely to rise more than 5 per cent each year. For further information on tuition fees please see Royal Holloway’s Terms & Conditions.

***These estimated costs relate to studying this particular degree programme at Royal Holloway. Costs, such as accommodation, food, books and other learning materials and printing etc., have not been included.

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