Hagley Catholic High School
Principal: Mr J Hodgson

Called as God’s family, we strive to achieve our personal best, by living and learning in Christ.

Our Music Department

The Music Team

To view the curriculum mapping document and the 'learning journey' poster for Music, then please click on the links below. If you have any queries then please contact the Subject Leader.

Subject Overview

Instrumental Staff

These teachers are in the Department for a few hours each week. We currently have over 70 pupils receiving Instrumental tuition each week. Pupils are encouraged to take formal qualifications such as ABRSM and Rockschool.

  • Mrs Davies - Singing
  • Mr Fletcher – Guitar / Bass
  • Mr Gibbs – Brass
  • Mr Handley – Piano
  • Ms Foster – Flute
  • Mrs Howells – Violin
  • Mr Peverelle – Drums
  • Mr Tattam – Clarinet / Saxophone
  • Miss Pearson – Cello

Contact ;



Music Vision

The music team believes that every child should have the opportunity to be creative through music. They will experience a wide range of styles and genres. They will then use their skills and knowledge to compose and perform in small groups and on individual tasks. We want them to take a pride in their work whilst developing a love of music. Through enthusiastic teaching, exciting curriculum and “state of the art” equipment we want to encourage all Hagley pupils to achieve the best they can.


The KS4 Music course for Hagley is the V-Cert in Music Technology. This is a vocational course that links to progress 8. This exam is now in the second year of teaching and numbers of the course have doubled. To aid a smooth progression to this course and to develop the skills needed, every KS3 year will use music technology in at least one of the music modules. (please see the KS3 curriculum)

The Edexcel A level Music Technology course has been running at Hagley for many years and this year 100% of the students have gone onto study Music technology at degree level.

Year 7

Vocal work

Part songs / rounds / composition and arranging / group work

Machine Music

Vocal techniques / improvisation / composition and arranging / simple graphic scores

Drum & Bass

Reading and composing using a variety of notation / Programming drum patterns  /

Developing skills in using computer software  / Mixing and selecting sounds and timbres

Pentatonic Work

Performing and composing using tuned and un-tuned percussion / keyboard skills / simple improvisation

Canon & Orchestral Instruments

Reading and arranging using the Canon / Linking orchestral sounds to Virtual sounds  /

Developing skills in using computer software / Mixing and editing using Logic

Year 8

12 bar Sequences and Riffs

Keyboard skills / 12 Bar Blues / developing improvisation skills / following notation / performing and composing riffs

Retro Game Music

Using computers to compose to music for a Retro Game / using the elements to create contrasting moods / working accurately with graphics, fitting the music to the action / developing skills in using computer software

Dr Who

Using computers to compose atmospheric music / understanding and composing using whole tone scale / understanding and using effects such as reverb and delay to enhance their composition / developing skills in mixing sound


Keyboard skills / understanding and composing using compound time / understanding the Jig structure / Using the computer to realize their composition / creating an authentic piece by their choice of tempo, instrumentation and textures

Year 9

Festival Music

Learning the conventions of samba music / composing using percussion instruments / arranging and performing a piece of traditional carnival music

Rock Workshop

Learning to play guitar, bass, drum kit and keyboard / performing as an ensemble / understanding different scores (drum, tablature and staff) /developing  their knowledge of popular music

New Directions

Experimenting with contemporary composition techniques such as serialism and minimalism / understanding developments in 20th Century music / developing skills in using computer software

Extended Harmony

Learning how to construct a selection of chords / composing chord sequences / arranging and refining their own piece using logic / understanding 7th, 4th and 9th extensions of triads.

Year 10

Students who opt for a KS4 Music will follow the Pearson V-Cert in Music Technology specification:

KS4 Music Technology V-Cert NCFE (Level 2 Technical Award in Music Technology)

Rock workshop, film music, new directions and other fun topics…. If you enjoyed these, the Music technology course could be for you! This new vocational course is designed for anyone with an interest in music and music technology. Perhaps you enjoyed learning guitar in Rock Workshop, or creating your film music on the computer. This qualification enables learners to develop skills, knowledge and understanding of the music technology industry. Although there is an element of theory, you will have already covered much of this in KS3 already.  The majority of the time will be experimenting with music ideas / sound, creating arrangements and compositions whist developing your sequencing and recording skills.

Although there are opportunities to perform on this course, you will not be assessed on your performance skills. You do, however need to work hard, be creative at the tasks set and be prepared to develop your own technology skills with the help of the Music team.

Will I enjoy this course?

You will enjoy this course if you want to study a subject that: is largely practical (50% involves practical music-making and creating a portfolio of work); allows you to be creative; gives you the opportunity to play music with others in e.g. pairs, pop/rock groups, bands or vocal groups; and to learn more about and use music technology. You will develop skills in the recording studio as well as composing and creating your own sounds.

What could I do next with V-Cert Music technology?

This V-Cert in Music Technology is equivalent to a GCSE (counting in Attainment 8 / Progress 8).  You will be able to achieve the highest GCSE grade (9) if you gain a Distinction Plus in this subject. This new course gives you broader experiences that are valued in many other professions that require you to show good teamwork, communication and expressive skills, as well as commitment, confidence and creativity. It will also prepare you well for AS/A Levels in Music and Music Technology as well as BTEC National Diplomas (in Music, Popular Music and Music Technology) and the Vocational A-Level in Performing Arts. There are also strong links to Media studies, Computing, Mathematics, Science, Economics and Business. 

Year 10

What will I study?

Unit 01 Using a Digital Audio Workstation (D/507/5002)

This unit will allow learners to develop skills in operating a Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) creatively using audio, MIDI, hardware and editing tools. Learners will create a musical project in response to a brief, reflecting industry skills.

  • Create a musical project that will include MIDI and audio
  • Review a completed musical project

This is similar to the Year 9 module on New Directions / Minimalism.

Unit 03 Studio recording (J/507/5009)

  • Plan a recording session in response to a given scenario
  • Undertake a studio recording session
  • Mix a multi-track recording
  • Review their mixdown

This will include elements similar to the Year 9 module on Rock Workshop.

There will be lessons to prepare the students for the External examinations to be sat in Year 11.

Year 11

Unit 02 Creating music (T/507/5006)

Learners will develop skills to analyse stylistic elements of music and develop a piece of music based on a specific style. Learners will engage in a review of technical and creative processes.

  • Understand the musical elements of a chosen style
  • Create a piece of music in the style identified in learning outcome 1
  • Review the musical piece

This is similar to the Year 7 module on Drum & Bass.

Unit 04 Sound creation (L/507/5013)

  • Learners will explore sound creation and apply their knowledge to a given brief. They will create and review their own original sound creation project.
  • Plan and undertake the sound creation for a given brief
  • Review their completed sound creation project

This is similar to the Year 8 module on Film Music.

The External examinations will also take place in this year. These will be sat in the Spring term, therefore giving the opportunity to retake the module in the summer if needed.

Examination Board: NCFE (Level 2 Technical Award in Music Technology)

Syllabus Code: (601/6774/9 )_

Head of Department: Mr F Mallinson

Key Stage 5

Students who opt for A level Music Technology will study the Edexcel specification:




AS + A level

Both courses are divided into 4 main sections;

Section 1, Recording  20% (9MT0/01)

 A selection of 10 songs are set by the board (June 19)

Component 1: Recording

Research and preparation will include time spent researching one of the ten tracks to be recorded, listening to the original and deciding on what effects and processing have been used, preparing and rehearsing the ensemble to be recorded, checking and testing equipment, learning microphone technique and placement, testing levels and getting everything set-up and prepared ready for the actual recording process.

Your recording should:

  • ● last between 2 and 2.30 minutes
  • ● use a minimum of five tracks (3 Compulsory instruments and 2 additional ones)
  • ● have a minimum of four tracks captured using microphones
  • ● make use of overdub techniques
  • ● use only live musicians, but keyboard parts may contain MIDI sequenced data or sampled loops
  • ● be a noise-free stereo production with use of appropriate effects.
  • ● Logbook and authentication forms must be fully completed.

Section 2, Composing  20% (9MT0/02)

Two audio samples are supplied by the board (Sept 19).


Component 2: Technology-based Composition

Creating, editing, manipulating and structuring sounds to produce a technology-based- composition.

Your composition should:

  • Develop the two samples given by the board (Sept 19)
  • Synthesis and sampling /Audio manipulation and creative effects must be included.
  • Total time must be 2.30 minutes
  • Logbook and authentication forms must be fully completed.


Section 3, Listening and Analysing  25% (9MT0/03)

Written examination 1Hour and 30 Minutes. (June 20).


Component 3: Listening and Analysing (75 marks -25%)

Knowledge and understanding of recording and production techniques / principles in commercial recordings

The paper is split into A: Listening and Analysing (40 marks)

  • 4 questions (10 marks each) A range of recordings from 1920 to the present day.

            Section A will consist of four questions of 10 marks each, which may include multiple-choice, gap- fill, diagrammatic, short-open and open response questions using unfamiliar commercial recordings as a stimulus. 


B: Extended Written Questions (35 marks)

  • 2 essay questions (15 / 20 marks) One answer is a compare and contrast and the other links closely to the development of production techniques over time.

Section B will consist of two extended open response questions.

The first will be comparative and based on production techniques and effects processing used on two unfamiliar commercial recordings (15 marks). 

The second will be based on one recording and ask the student to consider the wider musical context (20 marks).  

Section 4, Producing  and Analysing  35% (9MT0/03)

Written examination 1Hour and 30 Minutes. (June 20).


Component 4: Producing and Analysing (105 marks -35%)

In this practical paper, students will be provided with a CD of audio/ MIDI information

Students will correct and then combine the audio and MIDI material to form new tracks or parts from the material provided.

The paper is split into A: Producing and Analysing (85 marks)

  • 5 questions related to the audio recordings on the CD.

            Section A will consist of five questions that will include, spotting mistakes, correcting and manipulating synthesis problems, matching sounds, adding effects and demonstrating a selection of processors. 


B: Extended Written Questions (20 marks)

  • 1 essay question (20 marks) There will be an essay type question focusing on aspects of a music technology hardware unit.


Students will not be assessed on their instrumental skills although some practical performance expertise would be useful.

Students need an interest in a variety of different musical styles, basic ICT skills and a hard working attitude.

During the course students will be studying:

Recording Techniques.

Listening and analyzing popular music styles (1920 to the present day).

Use of multi effects/plug ins/sound samples and loops.

Sequencing Techniques.

 Arranging skills / Composing.

MIDI techniques /Sampling.

History of Recorded Sound.

 Production Techniques



Assessment is through continued coursework with the Recording and Composing being sent to an external examiner. This will be sent to the examiner around May 14th.

Component 3 and 4 will be set in June 2020.



The music course enables students to develop skills in communication, improving own learning and performance, information technology, problem solving and working with others.



Advanced Level music is the stepping stone for further study of Music Technology or performing arts at Higher National or Degree Level. It can also help in a career in the music industry or in a technology/computer orientated career.

What will the lessons be like and what will I have to do?

The start of the course will build up a bank of skills in order to access the set coursework. There will be some theory lessons in the first half term but will be mixed with Practical tasks.

Tasks will be set on a weekly basis and these will need to be completed.

This course will require you to access the equipment and work independently away from the taught lessons. The coursework will not be able to be done in just the lesson time.

What did the students say about the last year’s course.


Enjoyed the own Composition ”it gave us scope to try out new ideas and own thoughts”

Lots of help with all aspects of the course

Standard of equipment and “hands on” lessons linked closely with the Theoretical aspect of course.

Listening lessons were informative and lots of handouts.


Being very precise in choosing sounds was hard

Recording takes a long time if performers are not well rehearsed

Varied activities for the listening lessons.


The Course was very very enjoyable. It was Great!!

I enjoyed being creative and having the freedom to experiment with Sampling module.

Marking was frequent, constructive and gave top tips to improve. The Progress sheets had clear feedback and goals to help me focus on what I needed to do to reach the highest grades.

I loved the Recording, experiencing the studio and using all the cool bits of tech!!

The support that I received throughout the course was unbelievable. A joy from start to finish.



We have a wide range of musical activities that run every week. We encourage all year groups and all abilities to get involved. These activities develop new skills that enhance and support instrumental lessons and our curriculum. Joining a musical activity is a fantastic way to feel part of a team, be creative, meet new friends and have fun!

There are regular concerts, gigs at local venues as well as the Pyramid concert and the primary tours.

Here is the current Music Extra curricular timetable.