Sound Engineering Schools in the U.S.
Sound engineering schools offer degree programs in the recording arts, recording technology, acoustics and audio technology. Instruction in the field may be offered through a school's music or engineering department.
How to Select a Sound Engineering School
Sound engineering programs are available at community colleges, technical schools and universities. Some programs require students to be proficient in an instrument and perform in ensembles throughout the program.
Summary of Important Considerations
- Program levels
- School facilities and equipment
- Internship opportunities
When selecting a sound engineering school, students may want to consider the level of programs offered. Programs in sound engineering are commonly offered at the certificate, associate and bachelor's degrees levels. Some school's programs are geared towards the artistic side, with a focus on the recording arts, while others focus more on engineering principles by offering programs that take more of a scientific approach to sound and acoustics. The former type of program is usually offered through a school's music department.
School Facilities and Equipment
Sound engineering students might also investigate a school's facilities. The hardware and software used in the sound engineering and recording arts fields constantly evolve. A school that offers instruction using the latest technologies and tools for audio engineering may better prepare students to work in the field upon graduation.
Students may also want to consider attending a school that offer internships with local sound engineering companies. Experience gained through internships may better prepare students to work in the field after graduation, and may be attractive to potential employers.
Sound Engineering Program Overviews
Students of a certificate program are usually qualified for a specific type of equipment or job function, such as audiovisual technology, upon graduation. Depending upon the student's career goals, this option may be a fast and efficient way to enter the field. Certificate students take courses such as:
- Audio engineering
- Studio recording techniques
- Music business
- Music theory
- Pro Tools
Associate's Degree Programs
Graduates of these programs may be eligible for entry-level positions in the field. Programs may require students to complete a work experience or compile a portfolio. The curriculum of an associate's degree program in sound engineering includes coursework in:
- Sound reinforcement
- Music theory
- Sound mixing
- Music technology
Bachelor's Degree Programs
Students in a bachelor's degree program usually commit to a career path, such as working in the music recording industry, conducting acoustic principle studies or creating computerized innovations that process sound. In these programs, students may need to complete a senior project or thesis. They also study topics like:
- DC/AC circuits
- Music theory
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