FdA Roots And Popular Music


This exciting new programme is ideal for musicians who want to further their knowledge of roots and popular music. 

You will explore the origins of various styles and contextualise them through performance and theory workshops. You will study music performance and theory in addition to developing valuable enterprise skills that will support your career as a performer, music service provider and in music education.


The programme aims to promote the development of key skills derived from the following areas of music practice: 

  • Musicianship - encompasses all elements of music practice – technical ability, stylistic interpretation, feel and all aspects of a well-rounded musician.
  • Creativity - the source of all new music and aptitude, which all musicians develop as a way of expression. Creative writers are among the highest earners and most sought after professionals within the industry.
  • Theory knowledge - feeds into every aspect of the course. It informs practice, synthesis, analysis and can be related to written, aural and investigation of all established and new music.
  • Context Knowledge - helps musicians understand where music came from. The course will allow learners to delve into its effects on society, its character as an industry and the part they play as musicians.
  • Employability - focuses on presenting transferable skills as sellable skills. Whether for employment or self-employment, learners will analyse strengths and development points and forge them into a functioning musical package.

All of the skills developed relate directly to the music industry and help to promote employment opportunities. 

Entry Criteria

UCAS tariff points: 80

You will be required to hold: 

  • A minimum of 80 UCAS Credits
  • A Level 3 qualification in Music or a relevant equivalent
  • A Level 2 or equivalent in English Language (or be working towards).

Experienced musicians may be considered depending on successful audition, and demonstrating appropriate music experience or employment. 

Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL) 
If you have previously studied on a similar award and have gained higher education credit at an equivalent level it may be possible to take this into account to gain exemptions from one or more modules. 

What next after FdA Roots and Popular Music?

You could progress to a relevant top-up degree programme at New College Durham, such as BA (Hons) top-up Popular Music, to gain a full honours degree. 

Alternatively, you could progress into employment as a musician or music educator. You will have the skills to choose to work self-employed.

 Alternative Courses/degrees
 Published on 2023-08-26
 Deadline NA