Unit 35: SSI

This specialist unit gives learners the opportunity to carry out an in-depth and practical investigation into a chosen area of musical interest. Learners will be expected to choose an appropriate area of study, which they can then justify as suitable for investigation, promising ample scope for detailed study. Suggested examples of investigation topics include the history and development of a style of music; the career of a particular artist or composer; a development in music technology; the financial operation of a music organisation; social and cultural influences of and on a music genre; legal and copyright debates; etc.

There are 3 Assignments for the Unit:

1. Research Proposal

Produce a detailed research proposal for your intended subject of study. This will be typed on the support sheet provided by your tutor.Your proposal must show evidence that you can:

–       Describe (P1), explain (P2) and justify (D2) an appropriate area for research and investigation.

–       Describe (P1), explain (P2) and justify (D2) your research methodology with clear timelines for the project.

–       Select (P3), describe (M3) and comment critically (D3) on your choice of research materials from a range of sources.

2. Research Sources

Produce a report (written, audio, video or web-based) which explores THREE SOURCES you will use in your SSI research project. They MUST include:

–       One Book

–       One Website

–       One ‘Other’ source (this could be a CD, film, documentary, journal etc.)

For a Pass you should select three appropriate resources.

For a Merit you should describe what specific information you will get from each source.

For a Distinction you should justify your choices, explaining how the specific information will help your study.

3. Final SSI Project

Produce your Special Subject investigation according to the information in your research proposal. The assignment must be approx. 3000 words in length and must be referenced properly. You MUST include a bibliography.

Your final assignment must show evidence of your ability to collate and assimilate information from a range of sources (P4) and show clear reasoning (M4) and justification (D4) in your choices and methodology.

Present the results of your research (P5) fluently, accurately (M5) and with flair (D5), showing a comprehension (P6) or understanding of the topic with clearly reasoned judgements (M6), fully supported arguments, analysis and conclusions (D6).


Your bibliography CAN NOT be all internet-based. You are welcome to use as many websites as you like for your research but you must include REFERENCES FROM AT LEAST 3 BOOKS.


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