Musical Acoustics BSc (Hons) Audio Technology Coursework – Investigative Study of a Musical Instrument

Coursework [worth 50% of the overall module mark]
Choose a musical instrument, research its history and acoustics and write a 2,000 word
The Brief
formal report on your investigations.
Diagrams, photos, screenshots, YouTube videos, links to audio examples and good quality references should be
included where appropriate to support and enhance the text.
Marking Schedule
The total marks (100) for this coursework will be allocated as follows:
Explanation of history of the instrument [25 marks]
• This section should include the origins of the instrument, who invented it and when, which instruments
preceded it, how its design has evolved through time, examples of important recordings, master musicians of the
instrument etc
Detailed description of acoustics of instrument [25 marks]
• This section should include how the instrument generates sound and how pitch is selected, a critical discussion
on how the instrument is modelled theoretically, a discussion on different variations of the instrument etc.
Additional content [25 marks]
• This section should include further investigations which add to the understanding of the instrument. Examples
of this include how best to mic it up for live sound and/or recording, ways to synthesise the instrument with
audio examples, spectral analysis of recordings of the instrument for comparison etc. Please note that these are
only examples and not a list to be followed- there are plenty of other possibilities.
Presentation of report [15 marks]
• Marks for presentation are awarded for the quality of the writing style and organisation of the report. This
includes basics such as adherence to the required structure of the report (see page 4 below), spelling and
grammar, inclusion of page numbers etc.
Referencing [10 marks]
• Marks for referencing are awarded for the range and quality of the sources cited (not simply web pages),
appropriate citation of references in the body of the text and the correct use of the Harvard convention for

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