Sound Arts Bachelor's Degree Programs

A bachelor's degree in sound arts will focus on the technical aspects of music production and recording techniques. Learn how it can prepare you for a career in film, music or theater, among other fields. For information about course topics, job outlook and salaries, read on! Schools offering Music Production degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Will a Bachelor's Degree Program in Sound Arts Teach Me?

A sound arts bachelor's degree program, also commonly called sound design, music production or audio arts, can prepare you for a career in the audio and video production industry. Your program will cover the use of different types of music and sound in films, television, the music industry, video games and other multimedia applications. You'll learn professional techniques for recording audio, editing content and incorporating digital images in your work.

Skills Taught Recording techniques, digital sound editing, usage of various music in entertainment industry
Common Courses Sound design, recording and production, digital audio
Online Availability Fully on-campus or blended; fully online is less common
Possible Careers Live recordings studio engineer, production mixer, boom operator
Average Salary (2014)* $45,770 (A/V technicians, sound recording industry),
$47,430 (sound engineering techs, sound recording industry)

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Will My Classes Be Like?

Degree programs in sound arts combine creative ideas with technical issues. Your coursework will provide you with a strong foundation of skills to work with in the audio arts. You may learn about concepts such as audio engineering and production, live sound, music theory, acoustics and theatrical sound. Since audio is often paired with visual images at some level, you may gain an understanding of other fields including motion pictures and Web design. Some examples of classes you could take are:

  • Recording and production
  • Sound design
  • Media and sound
  • Digital audio
  • Visual audio

Degree programs in sound arts are very hands-on oriented, and for this reason, fully online programs are not generally available. Typically, your school will provide you with access to high-tech sound studios where you can practice your skills and complete your class requirements. Because sound has moved into the digital realm, you will also learn to use industry-specific computer software programs.

What Kinds of Jobs Will I Be Able to Get?

You should be able to work in sound design in a multitude of fields. You might work for a live recordings studio or a theater. Or, you could seek employment with the movie and music production industries, acoustic consulting companies or video game firms. Some specific job titles include studio engineer, music editor, production mixer and boom operator.

What Is the Employment Outlook Like?

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that the mean annual salary for professionals in the sound recording industries was $60,150 in May 2014. However, your wages will be dependent on the aspect of sound arts you choose to focus on. For example, audio and video equipment technicians earned a yearly average of $45,770 and sound engineering technicians earned $47,430, also in May 2014. In general, those who held management positions earned the most (www.bls.gov).

Competition may be fierce in this field; the BLS also noted that employment for sound engineering technicians was projected to grow by 8% from 2014-2024, which is as fast as average. But, opportunities might be better for audio and video equipment technicians: job growth was expected to increase 12% during the same time, which is a rate considered about average.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:

Popular Schools

  • Full Sail University

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  • The Art Institutes

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    • Virginia: Arlington
  • Regent University

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  • Colorado State University Global

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  • Southern New Hampshire University

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  • Ithaca College

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    • New York: Ithaca
  • Savannah College of Art and Design

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    • Georgia: Savannah
  • York College of Pennsylvania

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    • Pennsylvania: York
  • Texas State University

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    • Texas: San Marcos
  • The Art Institute of Seattle

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    • Washington: Seattle