Music Recording Degree Programs

Music recording degree programs include instruction in capturing musical performances using computers, microphones and other audio equipment. Discover degree and career options. Schools offering Music Production degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Music Recording Degree Programs Are Available?

If you want to work in recording studios, radio stations or music venues, an associate's or bachelor's degree in music recording can give you the training you need to get started. You can also look for programs in sound recording technology or audio production.

An associate's degree is enough to gain entry-level employment or prepare you to enter a 4-year bachelor's degree program. These programs are often offered through community and technical colleges, though some for-profit schools also offer music recording degrees. Many programs at this level award a Bachelor of Music degree, and such programs may require you to audition with a musical instrument to gain admission.

Degree LevelsAssociate's, bachelor's
Course TopicsMusic technology, music theory, recording techniques, editing, mixing
Online AvailabilityOnline programs are rare; some courses may be completed online, but in general, programs take place in person
CertificationVoluntary certification available through the Society of Broadcast Engineers
Median Salary (2018)* $43,660 (for broadcast and sound engineering technicians)
Job Outlook (2016-2026)* 8% (for broadcast and sound engineering technicians)

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Will I Learn?

No matter which level of degree program you choose, music recording students learn about music technology, music theory and recording techniques. You'll use computer software, such as Pro Tools, to record musicians in campus-based studios. The studios are often equipped with state-of-the-art equipment, from sound boards to monitors and microphones. You'll also have access to laboratories and theaters where you can learn about mixing, editing and overdubbing. Equipment maintenance is also often included in the coursework.

The program combines technological, science and engineering work with the artistic aspects of the music industry. You'll probably be required to take music performance courses, and you'll be encouraged to participate in musical ensembles. Internships and other hands-on learning experiences are also often a part of your education as a music recording student.

Can I Learn Online?

Very few distance learning options are available for music recording students, due to the in-person aspects of the training. Some schools offer some of more didactic courses through the Internet, including music business courses that teach you how to market finished recordings. Audio technology and artist management are other course subjects you might be able to explore online. You may also choose to enroll in an online music production degree program from a for-profit university.

What Kind of Job Will I Get?

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), you might find work in the music, television, radio or gaming industries ( Many music recording professionals work in studios, concert halls or clubs that host live music. You'll probably face competition to find work, especially in urban areas. Music recording technicians often work nights and weekends, when bands and musicians typically perform or are available to record. You won't need a license to work as a music recording technician or engineer, says the BLS, but the Society of Broadcast Engineers certifies those who pass their exam.

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:
The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

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