The University of Southampton

MUSI6031 Research Skills 1

Module Overview

This module introduces you to the materials of musical study and outlines ways of dealing with them.

Aims and Objectives

Module Aims

• introduce you to the materials of musical study (manuscript, print, recorded and other media) • introduce you to a range of practical and methodological approaches to musical study • teach you how to search for, describe and present musical materials using appropriate methods and tools • help you to evaluate the source issues raised by editions and studies of music • help you begin to compile a bibliography related to your chosen area of research

Learning Outcomes

Knowledge and Understanding

Having successfully completed this module, you will be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of:

  • the construction, description and use of musical materials such as print and manuscript scores, audio and audiovisual recordings, performances
  • non-musical primary and secondary sources, and the research tools appropriate to them
  • procedures for generating material for a research area new to you
Transferable and Generic Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • use online bibliographical tools and bibliographical software
  • read and annotate texts critically
  • present word-processed bibliographies in a standard humanities format
Subject Specific Practical Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • use online music bibliographical and discographical aids such as RILM and Music Index to generate music bibliography
  • use printed music bibliographical aids (eg RISM) to locate sources and generate bibliography
  • identify the appropriate methodologies for your new research area
Subject Specific Intellectual and Research Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • evaluate bibliographical tools and their uses for musical study
  • compile source material (primary and secondary) for a research project using appropriate tools and methods
  • critique musical editions, recordings, performances, and studies with an awareness of source issues they raise
  • summarise source material for annotated bibliography


This module introduces you to the materials of musical study and outlines ways of dealing with them. Printed, manuscript, recorded and other media are described along with appropriate methods of approaching sources of different types. Basic bibliographical tools for music (including online tools as well as standard print dictionaries, bibliographies and catalogues) are reviewed and explored. General research methods are introduced, including generating research questions; assembling and assessing sources; active note-taking and summarising; formatting a bibliography;

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

Teaching methods include • seminars, including sessions on • forming research questions • describing sources • using online resources • archives (in Special Collections) • making and critiquing editions • discography • analysing performance • bibliography and citation skills • presentation skills • practical sessions in the Library and Music computing cluster Learning activities include • individual study, including take-away tasks from weekly seminars • seminar discussion • accessing online resources Discussion in seminars will help you to understand the nature, construction and uses of musical sources and the bibliographical/ discographical tools you will need to locate and use them. Practical sessions in the Library and computing cluster will allow you to explore a range of source material and online bibliographical tools with tutor support. The preparation of a bibliography will allow you to demonstrate your skills in locating, describing and presenting musical materials in formats recognized as standard for the discipline. The bibliographical work is intended to support Research Skills 2 and the Dissertation modules, allowing students to explore the literature pertaining to their intended dissertation topic.

Independent Study126
Total study time150


Assessment Strategy

Assessments designed to provide informal, on-module feedback ? Skills questionnaire in Week 1 ? supervised bibliographical search in the Music computing cluster


MethodPercentage contribution
Annotated bibliography  (3500 words) 100%


MethodPercentage contribution
Coursework 100%

Repeat Information

Repeat type: Internal & External

Share this module Share this on Facebook Share this on Google+ Share this on Twitter Share this on Weibo

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive cookies on the University of Southampton website.