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    The development of songwriting skills including lyric writing, structure and composition techniques across a wide range of popular music styles.

    Writing a song can be easy, but writing a good song? Not so much. Getting the right words to interact with the right music, at the right time, can be a difficult balancing act, but that is the job charged to the songwriter. This paper provides students with the fundamental skills of songwriting to get that balance just right, including lyric writing, song structure and basic composition techniques.

    Students enrolling in MUSI 135 are strongly encouraged to also enrol in MUSI 132 Music Technology.

    About this paper

    Paper title Songwriting
    Subject Music
    EFTS 0.15
    Points 18 points
    Teaching period Semester 1 (On campus)
    Domestic Tuition Fees ( NZD ) $1,173.30
    International Tuition Fees Tuition Fees for international students are elsewhere on this website.
    Schedule C
    Arts and Music

    Students are strongly advised to have taken or be currently studying MUSI 191, or have a basic knowledge of music.


    Teaching staff

    Teaching Staff: Dr Maddy Parkins-Craig
    Dr Ian Chapman
    Mr David Harrison

    Teaching Arrangements

    Two 1-hour classes per week, with workshops throughout the year.


    Textbooks are not required for this paper.
    Resources and texts will be made available to students throughout the course of the paper where required.

    Course outline

    Please contact the School of Performing Arts for a copy of the most recent paper profile.

    Graduate Attributes Emphasised
    Lifelong learning, Communication, Critical thinking, Cultural understanding, Research, Self-motivation.
    View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.
    Learning Outcomes
    Students who successfully complete the paper will develop the work ethic of a creative mind, which involves drafting, editing and revising both language and music and a highly honed critical faculty as to what constitutes a final artefact.


    Semester 1

    Teaching method
    This paper is taught On Campus
    Learning management system


    Stream Days Times Weeks
    A1 Tuesday 12:00-12:50 9-13, 15-22
    Wednesday 13:00-14:50 9-13, 15-22
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