Audio Engineering

Find Audio Engineering Schools Near You!

Audio Engineering Schools, Audio Production Schools

Do you have the kind of attitude that says “I am the one who makes things happen?” Combine that with a love of music, and a career in audio engineering may be right for you.

There are many audio engineering colleges that offer degrees in sound and audio also known as audio production and audio recording. Please explore the audio production schools sponsored by this website and read our stories to determine if this career is right for you.

Schools for audio engineers tend to be at the cutting edge of audio technology, and you'll learn some of the best music production degree techniques as well as the best way to get into the field of sound engineering.

Once you’ve made the determination, enter your zip code into the search bar at the top right of the screen and find an audio engineering school and colleges near you. Allow our website to be your guide in choosing the program that is right for you!

What is Audio Engineering?

Audio engineering is not just about the knowledge of machinery and equipment used for recording, synchronizing, mixing or reproducing music, voices or sound effects. An audio engineer must also possess one other very important skill – good hearing.

Being able to pick up the subtleties of pitch, tone and volume of voices or instruments can make or break your career in audio engineering. This is why audio engineers sometimes are referred to as sound engineers.

What is an audio engineer?

Audio engineers deal with the technical aspect of recording, mixing and producing sound for a variety of media outlets. One of the most popular sources of employment for audio engineering is the film and music industry, which ranks as the second-highest earning source of income for those in this career. They are responsible for producing and reproducing the audio in movies, music and television programs.

In addition to the technical aspects of the career, sound experts also are responsible for maintaining – and sometimes repairing – equipment used for audio mixing and production.
These engineers also must keep up with current trends in technology, and customize their work to best serve the new and existing products on the scene, including iPods, MP3 players and other hand-held devices.

For example, in the last year, sound technicians have created specially-mastered versions of songs and albums for devices such as the iPod, which compresses the data in order to fit it on the device. Compression can degrade the quality of sound of music or other media. Apple currently is employing audio experts who have focused their energies on correcting this issue so its customers can have a more enjoyable audio experience.

Education

Many entry-level positions in the industry require only that a person have a high school diploma, or a GED (General Educational Development) certificate, to be hired. Some employers are willing to train the right candidate; however, those who start jobs in this industry without formal education are subject to a lower wage and fewer opportunities.

Completing an associate or bachelor’s degree program in audio engineering will not only provide more opportunity for hiring, but also an initial wage that is higher than for those without formal education in the industry.

So where do you go to become a trained audio engineer? That depends on your ultimate career plans.

While creativity goes a long way in helping to secure future employment in the industry, those without the technical knowledge that makes audio engineering work will fail to fully expand their horizons – and their career-advancement opportunities.

There are a variety of programs available to train students. When looking for a program, students should make sure they will be learning about the design and operation of audio recording devices, sound reinforcement and the audio equipment commonly used in the industry. Any training or degree program which does not offer these basics will be a waste of time and money.

Most audio-engineering programs at colleges are considered part of the undergraduate level in the music department, or part of the college’s arts and sciences division.

Top-rated audio engineering programs not only teach the basics of audio, but also offer the opportunity to intern with professionals already in the business. The best programs also are accredited through one of the accrediting agencies, including the U.S. Bureau of Accrediting Schools, the National Private Schools Accreditation Alliance and the National Association of Music Education.

The first audio-engineering school was the SAE Institute, which originated in Australia, and provided specialized sound courses. Since its inception, the institute has opened many worldwide locations, allowing for more students to experience its excellent training program. Students at SAE receive accredited audio engineering degrees.

In the United States, the first four-year degree program was offered at the University of Miami’s Frost School of Music. Students who completed the course earned a bachelor of music degree in music engineering technology.

Other top schools for audio engineering degrees include the American University in Washington, D.C.; the University of Denver; Belmont University in Nashville; and Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pa.

Earnings and Employment Outlook

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are 14,930 audio engineers working in the United States as of March 2012. The mean hourly wage for someone in this industry is $26.98 per hour, or $56,110 annually. Wages for the industry increase an average of 2.5 percent annually.

Top earners in this field work for architects and engineers, with an annual salary of $80,800. The film and music industry also produced high wages for audio engineers at $73,470 annually.
The best states in which to live if pursuing an audio engineering career include Ohio, Indiana, North Carolina, Georgia, New York, Washington, D.C., Minnesota, Arizona and Oregon.

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