The Teaching Musician is a postgraduate programme, developed to support and recognise the skills of musicians working in music education. It is designed as a professional development programme for musicians working in the UK and beyond in any educational setting: from instrumental and vocal teachers to community music practitioners.
Primarily a distance learning programme, it is designed for practitioners looking for a sustained training programme that offers the flexibility to be completed alongside a professional career. The programme offers opportunities to reflect, engage with theory and research, and develop new skills within a community of other practitioners.
The Teaching Musician will broaden and deepen your understanding of current learning models and core pedagogy, while supporting you to refine your practical skills through weekend workshops and inspiring work placements. It can be completed in a series of study blocks, leading to Postgraduate Certificate, Postgraduate Diploma or MA qualifications.
The Teaching Musician offers the opportunity to become part of, and learn within, a diverse cohort of musicians and educators. You will network and share learning with other practitioners and employers working across a variety of settings. This includes opportunities to engage with Trinity Laban’s Learning and Participation programme which offers a range of innovative outreach, community projects, and out of school learning activities, subject to availability.
As a foreign student, being able to access books and articles online through the Library links has been vital, and has generally worked well. Online tutorials have also been useful.
2020 Teaching Musician student (based in Ireland)
The programme will refresh your musical leadership skills, offer opportunities to engage with current ideas and research in music education and support you to develop your practice. It invites you to consider your own work as an educator within a wider context and evaluate its impact. This flexible programme promotes learning through inquiry, reflection, work placements and sharing within a dynamic community of practice. It embeds the importance of both theoretical knowledge and practical, lived experience, creating a circle of reflective practice that ensures your teaching and leadership remain relevant, fresh and effective.
The Teaching Musician programme consists of three blocks of study:
BLOCK A Certificate Modules (60 credits): Over four intensive training weekends, students choose from a range of teaching that explores the pedagogy and practice of instrumental/vocal teaching, group teaching and creative, participatory learning. The structure of each weekend allows you to engage with ideas and practices most relevant to you and creates an environment in which pedagogic principles can be explored across professional contexts. Each weekend leads to associated online discussion and a graded assignment. You will also undertake an Education Placement, through which to gain insight into a context for musical learning that is new for you.
BLOCK B Contemporary Practice Modules (60 credits): Over four days in the Easter holidays, students take two taught modules, hosted by TL staff but with regular visiting speakers. One focusses in depth on contemporary writers on music education, and the other on music technology and its uses in a variety of educational and community setting. At this time students are also introduced to two student-led modules to be taken over the year.
BLOCK C Personal Project Modules (60 credits): This block of study will develop your skills and experience in research, whether academic or practice-based, while extending your practice. The Personal Project consolidates learning from other elements of the programme and involves self-directed research in an area specific to each student. You may choose to take it alongside other study blocks should you wish to, in order to take advantage of project opportunities available to you.
These blocks of study may be combined to achieve the following qualifications:
PG Certificate The Teaching Musician (60 credits): The PG Certificate (60 credits) may be taken as a stand-alone qualification by successfully completing all 5 assessed modules of Block A
PG Diploma The Teaching Musician (120 credits): Block A may be combined with Block B OR Block C to achieve a PG Diploma
MA The Teaching Musician (180 credits): Block A may be combined with Block B AND Block C to achieve the MA The Teaching Musician
- Blocks of study may be taken concurrently, or separately.
- You may take study blocks worth a maximum of 120 credits in any one year.
- Block A, Certificate Modules should always be taken at the beginning of a programme of study.
- For guidance, we usually expect students to undertake 10 hours of learning activity towards each unit of credit. This includes private study, personal practice and reflection, work towards assignments and online activity, as well as attendance at face to face training. 120 credits is equivalent to one year of full time degree study.
- We offer a number of recommend routes to the full MA which are outlined in the Programme Brochure. Enrolment need not be continuous (i.e. you may return to study after a time away) but we usually expect the MA to be completed within five years.
For further details see the relevant programme specification:
Programme Specification Postgraduate Certificate: The Teaching Musician
Programme Specification Postgraduate Diploma: The Teaching Musician
Programme Specification MA The Teaching Musician
Teaching staff for the Teaching Musician are all highly experienced practitioners, teachers and researchers, from across the UK. A number of the team teach at other leading Higher Education Institutions and join Trinity Laban specifically to teach on this programme. Guest lecturers are also invited to teach on the programme who are leading specialists in areas of music education such as Dalcroze and Music Technology. Click below to read biographies of our core teaching team:
- Tim Palmer (Programme Leader)
- Dr Robert Wells
- Janet Munro
- Dr Dave Camlin
- Dr David Baker (Guest Lecturer)
How you will learn
- Four weekends of seminars and practical workshops (PG Cert)
- Ongoing distance learning that supports you to reflect on your professional practice
- Work placements, action research and mentoring
- Additional taught modules for PGDip/MA during the Easter holidays
- Active engagement with other students, sharing ideas, skills and approaches through our online Virtual Learning Environment, Moodle
- Teaching, support and mentoring from expert staff
- Written and practical assessments
Many students studying The Teaching Musician programme are increasingly choosing to continue study onto the PG Diploma or MA level qualifications after completing the PG Certificate, Students report that the programme builds connectivity and a network of support in what can be an otherwise isolating work environment. Other students have been approached by music hubs to deliver training based on research undertaken for the Personal Project module, built new and innovative teaching techniques into their practice and enhanced job prospects through the merit that an MA from a world leading conservatoire holds.
Our graduates go on to follow careers in solo, ensemble and orchestral performance, composition and arranging, creative project work, instrumental/vocal teaching, community project work, collaborative projects with other media/art forms, or further study.
Assessment methods as far as possible mirror professional contexts. There are a wide range of assessment tasks in the programme, from a video of teaching (Theory into Practice 3) to case studies and essays. Programme components will feature a blend of written and practical assessment methods (including composition, teaching resources, observation of practice etc.) Most assessments will focus on relevant professional skills and knowledge.
The programme assessment strategy involves a trajectory of increasingly personalised options of increasing weight, with peer-to-peer support through forums and staff support through supervisions on the Education Placement module. Most tasks are dependent on professional practice as an educator, and are centred on connecting reflective practice with theoretical knowledge.
In addition you will receive regular and on-going feedback from staff through seminars, online forums and one-to-one supervision.
Further information on assessment methods for each module can be found in the Programme Brochure.
• A degree, or equivalent training and/or professional experience. We welcome applicants who do not hold an undergraduate degree, but can demonstrate equivalent previous study and/or experience. Applicants without a degree will be required to apply for Recognition of Prior Learning following submission of a UCAS application to demonstrate suitability for postgraduate study. This will require you to explain to us the equivalent learning you have achieved through experience or formal study
• Considerable professional experience in music education and/or participatory settings, which should normally be current or recent, and a current professional practice
• Fluent musical skills on your principal instrument/voice (normally grade 8 or equivalent professional experience)
• Applicants for whom English is not their first language should demonstrate proficiency in English equivalent to a pass at Trinity Integrated Skills in English (ISE) III or IELTS 6.5 in all 4 areas. Equivalents from other English language course providers may also be considered.
Fees and Finance
Students can now opt to pay for 1 year programmes in full, or in instalments to spread the cost of study on Blocks A, B and C. Payment can be made in 4 instalments throughout the year of study.
Academic fees for 2021 are:
BLOCK A Certificate Modules (1 year)
(instalment cost: £513 x4)
BLOCK A Certificate Modules Flexible (2 years)
Annual Registration Fee: £85
Payment by module made via Trinity Laban’s online shop (5 Modules Total) at: £460 (2021 price), £480 (2022 price)
BLOCK B Contemporary Practice Modules (1 Year)
(instalment cost: £513 x4)
Learning Mentor additional fee for 1-1 instrumental/vocal/composition lessons: £800
BLOCK C Personal Project Modules (1 Year)
(instalment cost: £448 x4)
International Academies Route
Only available to students who have completed the Trinity Laban International Academies Intensive 6 day programme
Please note that for those hoping to study with us beyond 2021, fees are subject to an inflationary rise each year broadly in line with the Retail Price Index (RPI).
You can also see our current and past fees.
We are now able to offer 4 bursary places at the value of £3,500 for music educators who are experiencing financial hardship to study on The Teaching Musician MA programme starting in February 2021.
Find out more and apply: Scops Bursaries
How to Apply
Applications to The Teaching Musician starting February 2021 are now open via UCAS Conservatoires with a deadline of Friday 1st January.
The deadline has been extended as we are now able to offer 4 bursary places for music educators who are experiencing financial hardship to study on The Teaching Musician MA programme starting in February 2021.
Find out more and apply: Scops Bursaries
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org with any enquiries. Subscribe to our Professional Development-Music mailing list to hear updates first about The Teaching Musician and other professional development opportunities with Trinity Laban.
|Location||Distance learning (with some attendance)|
|Duration||1 - 4 years|
|Start Date||February 2022|
The Teaching Musician
Hear from current & past students