Bachelor of Commercial Music (Honours) – BCommMus(Hons)

Refine your specialist music skills with postgraduate study in Commercial Music. Singer, DJ, lighting tech, or tour manager—whatever your jam, we’ll help you get further.

Type of qualification

Bachelor's degree with honours

Level of study

Postgraduate study

Once you’ve graduated with a bachelor’s degree – or have equal experience – you can study at the postgraduate level. Doctoral qualifications require additional entry requirements.

More about study levels

NZQF level 8

Our courses follow the New Zealand Qualification Framework (NZQF) levels.

Find out more about NZQF levels

Time to complete

1 year full-time (120 credits)
Up to 3 years part-time
Part-time available

Where you can study

Wellington campus

International students

International students are not New Zealand citizens or residents.

Definition of New Zealand citizens and residents

Open to international students on campus in New Zealand

Study a Bachelor of Commercial Music (Honours) – BCommMus(Hons)

The Bachelor of Commercial Music (Honours) is a one-year degree, with taught courses followed by an independent project. You’ll get one-on-one mentorship and support from our industry-connected academics.

You’ll gain more skills in research, development and creating prototypes and learn how to make your work professional. Your creative work will be research-driven, as you explore your place in the complex, ever-changing music industry.

You’ll focus on developing a project of your own, supported by a written thesis.

You’ll have access to Toi Rauwhārangi College of Creative Arts’ state-of-the-art facilities. This includes world-class recording facilities and technology labs, as well as a range of immersive media technologies. You’ll learn from well-connected academics who have extensive research and performance expertise in New Zealand and across the globe.

Further study

The Bachelor of Commercial Music (Honours) will give you the research skills and qualification to progress to further postgraduate study, including PhD study.

A BCommMus(Hons) is a good fit if you:

  • achieved highly in the Bachelor of Commercial Music
  • want to refine your specialist music skills and become an advanced practitioner
  • want to support your creative practice with research.

Entry requirements

Admission to Massey

All students must meet university entrance requirements to be admitted to the University.

Specific requirements

To enter the Bachelor of Commercial Music (Honours) you will:

  • have been awarded or qualified for a Bachelor of Commercial Music, or equivalent, with at least a B grade average over the highest level courses.

You will need to provide copies of all official academic transcripts for studies taken at all universities other than Massey University.

English language requirements

To study this qualification you must meet Massey University's English language standards.

Time limits for Honours, Distinction and Merit

Where your qualification is completed within the stated time limit and to a high standard, you may be able to graduate with a class of Honours, Distinction or Merit. 

Prior learning, credit and exemptions

For information on prior learning, exemptions and transfer of credit or other questions:

English language skills

If you need help with your English language skills before you start university, see our English for Academic Purposes (EAP) courses.

Maximum time limits for completion

There are maximum time limits to complete postgraduate qualifications.  If you do not complete within the maximum time, you may be required to re-apply for the qualification if you wish to continue your studies.

Official regulations

To understand what you need to study and must complete to graduate read the official rules and regulations for this qualification.

You should read these together with all other relevant Statutes and Regulations of the University including the General Regulations for Postgraduate Degrees, Postgraduate Diplomas, and Postgraduate Certificates.

Returning students

For returning students, there may be changes to the majors and minors available and the courses you need to take. Go to the section called ‘Transitional Provisions’ in the Regulations to find out more.

In some cases the qualification or specialisation you enrolled in may no longer be taking new enrolments, so may not appear on these web pages. To find information on the regulations for these qualifications go to the Massey University Calendar.

Please contact us through the Get advice button on this page if you have any questions.

Structure of the Bachelor of Commercial Music (Honours)

The BCommMus Honours year is a 120-credit qualification. You will complete three compulsory courses (105 credits) and choose between either the Contemporary Music Project or Independent Study.

More information: ‘Yellow Book.

Courses and specialisations

Key terms

Each qualification has its own specific set of courses. Some universities call these papers. You enrol in courses after you get accepted into Massey.
Course code
Each course is numbered using 6 digits. The fourth number shows the level of the course. For example, in course 219206, the fourth number is a 2, so it is a 200-level course (usually studied in the second year of full-time study).
Each course is worth a number of credits. You combine courses (credits) to meet the total number of credits needed for your qualification.
Some qualifications let you choose what subject you'd like to specialise in. Your major or endorsement is what you will take the majority of your courses in.

Credit summary

120 credits

  • Compulsory courses – 60 credits
  • Research project – 60 credits

Course planning key

Courses that need to be completed before moving onto a course at the next level. For example, a lot of 200-level courses have 100-level prerequisite courses.
Courses that must be completed at the same time as another course are known as corequisite courses.
Some courses are restricted against each other because their content is similar. This means you can only choose one of the offered courses to study and credit to your qualification.

Compulsory Courses (Choose 105 credits from)

Choose 105 credits from
Course code: 133701 Prototyping and Development for Advanced Music Projects 30 credits

Students undertake research toward developing a project relevant to their creative practice. Students learn techniques to produce an early prototype, synopsis, or equivalent concept. This culminates in the preparation of a proposal for their major projects.

View full course details
Course code: 133702 Critical Frameworks for Music 15 credits

Students become competent in situating their work within research methodologies and principles to support their development as critically-informed creative practitioners. Students learn to frame and present their creative practice as research via the development of critical reflexive and analytical skills, and engage in the development of a research proposal for their project.

View full course details
Course code: 133803 Advanced Music Research Project 60 credits

In this course students will undertake research to develop a creative work in music. Students will be guided through a series of seminars and supervised sessions to develop, document and disseminate their research.

Prerequisites: 133701

View full course details

Compulsory Course Selection (Choose 15 credits from)

Choose 15 credits from
Course code: 133703 Contemporary Music Project 15 credits

Engagement with new thinking in contemporary music research through a specific lecturer-led project.

Prerequisites: Permission Head of School

View full course details
Course code: 197705 Independent Study 15 credits

Fees and scholarships

Fees, student loans and free fees scheme

Your tuition fees may be different depending on the courses you choose. Your exact fees will show once you have chosen your courses.

There will also be some compulsory non-tuition fees and for some courses, there may also be charges for things such as study resources, software, trips and contact workshops.

Already know which courses you're going to choose?

You can view fees for the courses that make up your qualification on the course details pages.

Student loans (StudyLink) and Fees Free scheme

You may be eligible for a student loan to help towards paying your fees.

The New Zealand Government offers fees-free tertiary study for eligible domestic students. Find out more about the scheme and your eligibility on the Fees Free website. To use the site's eligibility checking tool, you will need your National Student Number.

Current and returning Massey students can find their National Student Number in the student portal.

Fees disclaimer

This information is for estimation purposes only. Actual fees payable will be finalised on confirmation of enrolment. Unless otherwise stated, all fees shown are quoted in New Zealand dollars and include Goods and Services Tax, if any. Before relying on any information on these pages you should also read the University's Disclaimer Notice.

Careers and job opportunities

Postgraduate study in commercial music will give you an edge in a competitive industry. It will set you up with the knowledge, critical understanding and technical skills to succeed. You could leave your honours year with an album ready to release, a tour planned, or a portfolio of artist management skills.

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