RSL Level 3 Diploma for Music Practitioners

Level 3 Diploma in Songwriting

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A 1-year full-time diploma available at:

This practical and vocational course is equivalent to two A levels and is all about developing your songwriting technique, improving your performance skills and musical style. You’ll learn how to get yourself noticed by the music industry and will steadily build your confidence towards that of a professional musician.

You’ll gain a fundamental understanding of the way the music industry works. Plus, you will study music history, notation, arranging, music production and musicianship skills. You’ll be expected to sing at workshops or performance opportunities and be able to support your performance with piano or guitar accompaniment, or music production techniques. All in all, it’s a fantastic grounding for a holistic understanding of modern music and the industry that surrounds it.

BIMM Bristol guitarist frontman

You’ll also have the opportunity to learn in a creative environment where you’ll develop strong connections with fellow aspiring musicians and will be guided by your lecturers and prominent music industry professionals to help steer you towards your future career or study goals.

Successful completion of the course will gain you a RSL Level 3 Diploma for Music Practitioners qualification, which is a great gateway to taking your first steps in a music industry career or continuing on with study in the form of a music degree at BIMM Institute.

To make your way as a songwriter, connect with us, and we’ll connect you to a life in music.

student recording at trixx student booth

Course specification

Mode of attendance: Full-time

Length of course: 1 year

Awarding institution: RSL

Campus delivery: London

Language of study: English

Final award and exit awards: RSL Level 3 Diploma for Music Practitioners (Composition)

Admissions Criteria: Five GCSE qualifications with a minimum grade of C/4, including English Language and Maths.

Minimum requirements

Five GCSE qualifications with a minimum grade of C/4, including English Language and Maths.

Overseas students where English is not their native language must meet a minimum English Language requirement of IELTS 5.5, with no lower than 5.5 to have been achieved in each band.


Graduates can progress directly to employment in the music industry in roles such as a songwriter, singer-songwriter, solo performer and band member.

Alternatively, they can continue their studies with BMus (Hons) Songwriting at BIMM Institute London.

Course fees

Because we’re Europe’s largest and most prestigious music institute, we’re uniquely positioned to offer outstanding value and quality to all our students.

We’re dedicated to giving our students the best music education possible – which means accessing our expert lecturers in industry-leading facilities at the heart of the UK’s music scene.

We make sure all BIMM Institute courses are great value for money – representing a practical and affordable investment for your future career in the music industry.

Module names and structure may be subject to change.

This lesson gives students practical music industry knowledge that will help them plan their careers. They’ll be taken through all aspects of the music industry, including record and publishing deals, management, music synchronisation, legal issues, copyright, music teaching, live music and business plans.

Students will develop their aural and theory skills in this lesson by learning to explore and identify musical components such as rhythm, melody, harmony, tonality, instrumental timbre and structures. This will enable them to acquire the critical listening skills required in a songwriting environment and will enable them to communicate quickly and effectively in a variety of musical situations, opening up many employment opportunities throughout their career.

This lesson not only gives students the skills to critically listen to music but also understand the personal, social and cultural conditioning that can inform our musical tastes. The lesson will give you chance to analyse the factors behind changes in personal responses to music over time identifying the key events that are likely to have influenced these changes.

Live Performance Workshop is the chance for students to perform their own songs and the songs that have influenced their style. They’ll develop their live sound and accompanying skill concentrating on performing, showmanship and the right mental approach.

They may perform themselves on piano or guitar, invite other instrumentalists to accompany them or utilise a sequencing programme to create a backing track.

Within the industry, the creation of lyrical structures and top-line melodies forms an important skill for any writer. In this lesson, the art of melody creation will be studied, with a focus on the development of top lines. The authorship of lyrical content is also studied with an emphasis on creativity.

This lesson supports an understanding of the bigger picture of modern songwriting and gives students the opportunity to develop their knowledge of structure, shape and style through a study of songwriters from Amy Winehouse and Lily Allen to The Beatles and Joni Mitchell.

Students present their songs, sketches or ideas within a workshop environment, with lecturers giving constructive feedback, suggesting areas for development and setting appropriate tasks. Peers will be encouraged to critique the songs of fellow students and encourage possible collaboration. Student portfolios of work across lessons will also come under the spotlight with feedback sessions from industry experts and professional songwriters.

Students learn how to arrange their music for a range of instruments through the understanding of range, timbre and articulation. Studying arranging techniques across a variety of genres will enable them to engage the most appropriate instruments and writing styles to enhance their composition portfolio.

This lesson introduces students to industry-standard music software packages, allowing them to sequence ideas, programme drum loops and manipulate sounds.

This lesson is a chance to recap and review key areas of the curriculum, as well as receiving information relating to assessments, auditions and masterclasses.

Any questions?

For any questions regarding our courses or if you’d like more information on how to apply to BIMM Institute, please contact our Admissions Team on 0344 2 646 666 or email [email protected].


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