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Southern Cross University Bachelor of Contemporary Music
Southern Cross University

Bachelor of Contemporary Music

Lismore, Australia

3 Years


Full time, Part time

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AUD 25,200 *

Distance Learning, On-Campus

* $25,200 annual tuition fee, international students. Enquire about scholarship opportunities of up to $5000


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Prepare yourself for a career in the 21st-century music industry with this course, which will provide opportunities to develop your skills as a musician, while also building your knowledge about the many facets of the music industry.

You will learn in state-of-the-art music studios, guided by lecturers who are practicing musicians with strong industry links, getting the chance to refine your practical, musical and musicianship skills.

Southern Cross students have become world-famous bands and individual performers and students benefit from access to artists and producers at some of Australia’s most coveted music events, such as Splendour in the Grass, Byron Bay Bluesfest, and the Falls Festival.

You will have the opportunity to perform individually or with bands at a wide range of North Coast entertainment venues, as well as regularly using the professional studio and performance space, Studio One29 at Lismore campus.

Career Opportunities

As performers, songwriters, producers, sound engineers, music educators, session musicians, musical directors, arrangers, music event promoters, band and venue managers.

Graduates of the Bachelor of Contemporary Music who complete the required units can study the Master of Teaching and teach secondary school music.

Professional Placement

Students have the opportunity to undertake professional placements at major national and international venues and with music organizations. Public performances are a major part of the assessment process and students have opportunities to perform at North Coast entertainment venues or form bands, taking advantage of the rich music environment throughout the region.

Major Areas of Study

There are eight streams:

  • Performance (audition stream)

  • Performance (non-audition stream)

  • Songwriting/Composition (audition stream)

  • Songwriting/Composition (non-audition stream)

  • Music Education

  • Sound Production

  • New Media Arts

  • Screen

The flexible course structure enables students to choose the pathway most suited to their interests. Students can combine elements from different streams to create their own pathway.

All students participate in collaborative, practical music-making activities throughout the degree. An extensive ensemble program includes small and large repertoire-focused groups and student-led project bands. Students write, arrange, rehearse, record and perform a wide range of music, and are encouraged to develop their own creative projects.

Performance audition and Songwriting/Composition audition streams

The Performance audition stream and the Songwriting/Composition audition stream offer students who are entering the course with high-level abilities the opportunity to work closely with staff and hone their skills in a specialist area. Students in these streams receive extensive one-on-one tuition and consultations.

Please note that students wishing to be considered for the performance or songwriting/composition audition streams must complete the audition process as part of their application to this course.

Students who achieve a high level in the performance non-audition stream, or songwriting/composition non-audition stream, can transfer into the audition stream in the second year.

Music Education stream

Students who complete the degree with the Music Education stream can then apply for a graduate education course (such as the Master of Teaching at Southern Cross) to become a secondary school music teacher. The Bachelor of Music course structure enables them to also pick up a second teaching area by taking elective units in either English, history, maths or geography.

Sound Production stream

The Sound Production stream develops students' skills in live and recording sound engineering. Students have access to state-of-the-art production facilities, including purpose-built recording and performance spaces. They work closely with performers and songwriters in both live and recording environments.

New Media Arts and Screen streams

Students in the New Media Arts stream and the Screen stream pursue design, film, video and emerging art practices. There are opportunities for students to collaborate on projects with students studying the Bachelor of Digital Media and Communication and the Bachelor of Art and Design.

Assessment methods

Assessment methods include performances, composition/songwriting portfolios, recording portfolios, technical assessments, musicianship exams and assignments, oral presentations, reflective writing tasks, peer and self-assessments, essays, projects and written exams.

Teaching methods

On-campus students experience a variety of teaching approaches including lectures, tutorials, individual tuition, online activities and video-linked or podcast virtual classes. The method of teaching may vary from unit to unit.

About the School


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