Postgraduate Study

It’s time to Master your career

Develop yourself academically, creatively and professionally after your undergraduate degree with an innovative postgraduate degree course. A Masters is an exciting prospect that can take your career ambitions to the next level – and give you a real edge in the job market.

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What is a Masters?

An MA (Master of Arts) is an advanced academic degree designed for post-compulsory education. It builds on either your existing bachelor’s degree or professional experience. An MA can also be referred to as:

  • A masters degree
  • A postgraduate degree
  • Or postgraduate study

These courses are often more autonomous than undergraduate degree courses. For example, you’ll generally be given the chance to do more independent research and learning, developing and engaging in specific areas to gain a more specialised understanding of your subject area or profession.

Key facts

Industry-led and 100% relevant.

Well-balanced classes – a mix of theory and practical study.

Provides the skills, tools and knowledge needed to develop yourself academically, creatively and professionally.

Includes the opportunity to work in a vibrant postgraduate student community.

Allows you to collaborate on a range of creative and entrepreneurial projects.

1 year full-time or 2-year part-time study options available.

Studying a postgraduate course is an exciting prospect. Having a Masters qualification demonstrates to employers that you have the commitment, determination and passion for advancing your ability in a chosen area.

And there are figures out there to show that a postgraduate course is worth it. For example:

  • The UK Commission for Employment and Skills predicts that roughly 15% of jobs (1 in 7) are likely to need a postgraduate degree by 2022.
  • The UK Department for Education state that graduates and postgraduates have higher employment rates than non-graduates.
  • They also state that 77% of all working-age postgraduates are in high-skilled employment, compared with 65% of all working-age graduates.

If you’re considering a postgraduate degree, but you’re not quite sure whether it’s right for you, here are some of the main benefits of studying an MA:

Advance in your chosen career —professionally and financially

Having a Masters can improve your career prospects. It gives you the further knowledge you might need to apply for advanced positions in your company or industry. Also, people with Masters degrees tend to earn more on average than those with a bachelor’s degree.


Flexible learning – develop yourself in your own time

You can choose to study full-time over the course of a year or part-time over two years. This means that you don’t have to put your career on hold or give up the day job if you don’t want to.

BIMM students creating, songwriting and guitar

Make important connections

When you study for a Masters degree, you connect with people professionally and have the chance to network in your chosen field. Our MA Popular Music Practice course allows you to work together with other students from different fields.

Additionally, all our internal industry engagement opportunities that are available to Undergraduate students are also accessible for Postgraduate students. This means you can strengthen your network and take part in exclusive performances, Masterclasses and work-based learning to give you the best springboard into a sustainable career once your studies are complete. You’ll also remain part of the BIMM Institute network via our BIMM Connect graduate platform.

BIMM Berlin Production Studio students collaborating

Explore your interests in more depth

If you have a passionate academic interest, a Masters is perfect for satisfying your curiosity. You’ll have plenty of opportunities to pursue your subject from different angles – and you’re guaranteed to know your chosen subject inside-out at the end of your course.

bimm berlin library

Gain the necessary tools to make that dream career change

If you’re thinking of switching careers (or have a dream role in mind), a Masters can help get you there. After all, you’ll have the knowledge, skills and confidence under your belt to go after what you want.

Having a Masters to your name can also give you the edge in a crowded job market and make your CV stand out among those with an undergraduate degree.

Become a leader in your chosen field

On the MA Popular Music Practice course, you’ll be taught by the best in the business. And you’ll have the opportunity to become a contributor in your field yourself, not just a learner.

You will be able to work on your own creative and entrepreneurial projects, developing independent ideas and research in the areas of contemporary music that interest you: Entrepreneurship, Performance, Production and Composition.

Although your final award will bear one of these titles, you’ll have the opportunity to explore different areas of your practice whilst studying.

On the MA Learning & Teaching in the Creative Industries course, you’ll primarily work to develop your skills and knowledge as a creative and innovative teacher. Beyond your practice, you have the opportunity to explore deeper issues and questions of education, in areas such as course design, educational philosophy, leadership and mentoring, and educational research.

student playing drums at trixx studio
BIMM Lecturer teaching production

The innovative MA Popular Music Practice provides fantastic opportunities for you to explore your own specialism within popular music in line with your personal career aspirations. It allows you to stand apart from others in your chosen field and lead the discussion in contemporary music.

You are a popular music practitioner – either a performer, producer, composer or entrepreneur – with innovative ideas and a desire to work together with students from different fields.

During your MA, we’ll help you turn your ideas into reality. We’ll introduce you to cutting-edge research and assist you with broadening your network within the industry.

Take the next step

Studying the MA Popular Music Practice is the next step if you want to further develop yourself academically, creatively and professionally after your degree.

Find out more

BIMM Birmingham studio


This course is available to study at the following BIMM Institute locations:

The MA Learning & Teaching in Creative Industries is perfect if you’re looking to enter a teaching career for the first time. It’s also the ideal choice if you’re an experienced educator wanting to broaden your knowledge and skills within the field of creative arts education at Further Education and Higher Education levels.

You’ll engage in critical and collaborative development as a creative educator and improve your skills and agency as a teacher, as well as literacy in educational research.

The MA programme will take a person-centred approach and include a balance of expert tuition, experiential workshops and self-guided study.

Take the next step

Studying the MA Learning & Teaching in Creative Industries is the next step if you want to further develop yourself academically, creatively and professionally after your degree.

Find out more


This course is available to study at the following BIMM Institute locations:

  • Our Popular Music Practice course is designed for popular music practitioners – performers, producers, composers and entrepreneurs – with innovative ideas and a desire to work together with students from different fields.
  • Our Learning & Teaching in Creative Industries course is ideal if you’re wanting to enter a teaching career for the first time, or you’re an experienced educator looking to broaden your skills and knowledge within the field of creative arts education at FE and HE levels.

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You can apply for a Masters whether you studied your degree at BIMM Institute or elsewhere/at another university. You can also apply if you’re a mature student.

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The application process is a little different compared to our degree-level courses. Please contact [email protected] for more information.

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Like most academic qualifications, postgraduate courses have entry requirements. You can find the entry requirements for our postgraduate degrees on the individual course pages.

However, you can also apply to study a Masters even if you haven’t met the entry requirements as sometimes a substantial amount of professional experience (such as teaching) will suffice. You may be asked to submit an additional portfolio evidencing your practical experience. This is referred to as Recognition of Prior Certified and Experiential Learning (RPCEL).

The course team will assess your experience on a case-by-case basis before your interview.

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This is a case-by-case decision made by the course team prior to interview. Typically, you would have several years of teaching experience, which could come from a variety of contexts such as classroom or one-to-one tuition.

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We normally ask for two referees, one of which should be able to comment on your academic ability to succeed on the course. Please contact the Admissions Team if you are not able to provide this.

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Our Admissions Team checks enquiries daily and would normally be able to respond to your application within 48 hours of receipt. The team will then be in touch regarding the next steps, such as booking your interview.

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You may hear on the day, but in some cases, the course team will consider your application for longer. We aim to respond within seven days at the latest.

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Yes, we will hold your place on the course for one year. Beyond that, you are welcome to reapply for a place.

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You’ll be taught by expert practitioners who are also often active researchers.

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This will depend considerably on whether you take the one-year full-time, or two-year part-time version. For the former, you take two modules each semester, and the latter just one module.

Modules on the MA differ in how they are delivered. Typically, you may either have weekly evening sessions (usually 6 pm until 9 pm) for the 12-week semester, or you may have weekend workshops (one to two days, from 10 am until 5 pm) with some shorter weekly/fortnightly meetings. In all cases, there will be preparation and/or reading before each session.

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  • Postgraduate study space
  • Access to online library and journal database
  • Free research software – NVIVO
  • Tutorials and supervision with expert practitioners in the field of education
  • Teaching placements at BIMM Institute, with the support of an experienced mentor

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Subject to eligibility criteria applicants will be able to apply for a Post Graduate Loan for tuition fees. Further details are available here.

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BIMM Institute do not offer any payment plans as the fees will be covered by a Post Graduate loan for eligible applicants.

If you intend to pay your fees privately please be aware that payment for the course must be received before you can enrol.

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No. The introductory module on the MA is designed to accommodate those with no teaching experience. However, we recommend gaining some experience in the area you wish to teach before applying. This is the best way to decide for yourself if you are committed to the course you would take on.

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Our MA is geared for post-compulsory education in the creative industries/subjects – so that means FE/HE, private or alternative education, or corporate training/development. Our alumni typically go on to work in colleges as music tutors, in student support departments, become instrumental teachers, teach abroad in music institutions, work in HE institutions in teaching, administration or (usually later) leadership, and some alumni have set up their own companies/institutions offering creative education.

During the MA itself, there is the space to explore what kind of professional work you are interested in and to get practice and provide feedback in developing in those areas. For instance, there are optional modules concerning module/curriculum development, educational philosophy, or mentoring/leadership, in addition to teaching and research in education.

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Not quite. QTS is the qualified status for school teachers, and is granted as part of a PGCE. Since the MA is focused on post-compulsory education, the relevant professional route is QTLS through the Society for Education & Training (SET). The SET do not directly accredit courses for QTLS, but is instead offered as a follow-on after the qualification. So, upon graduation of our MA, you could then gain QTLS, which would enable you to teach in late-secondary schooling or be more competitively qualified for FE teaching.

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No. Typically placements are unpaid on such courses. The PGCert/MA has part-time routes allowing you to work alongside studying. You might find paid work either in private instrumental teaching, or assisting/teaching at an institution, which can count towards your placement hours on the course.

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If you opt to select the teaching practicum (part of the final ‘action research’ module), then you will be supported in gaining at least 100 hours of logged educational practice while on placement in a BIMM Institute College.

In addition, the course includes a wealth of opportunities to link new ideas and techniques to your personal teaching practice.

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Any questions?

For questions on how BIMM Institute can prepare you for a career in music, or if you’d like more information on how to apply, please contact our Admissions Team on 0344 2 646 666 or email [email protected].


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British and Irish Modern Music Institute