Recording Arts Technology Jobs

Explore the career requirements for recording arts technology jobs. Get the facts about education requirements, salary, and potential job growth to determine if this is the right career for you. Schools offering Music Production degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Is a Recording Arts Technologist?

Recording arts technology jobs may include aspects of sound engineering, broadcast engineering, or both. They operate technical machinery involved in the recording, adjusting, and broadcasting of sound and video in a variety of media. They must have knowledge of how their equipment works in order to repair and maintain it as needed. Oftentimes, they will need to work with other professionals in order to find the best sound and video quality for the project, as well as synchronize different video and audio tracks to play at the appropriate time.

The following table discusses education requirements, important skills, and earning potential for these related career fields.

Sound Engineering Technician Broadcast Technician
Degree Required Certificate or associate's degree Certificate or associate's degree
Education Field of Study Sound engineering, recording arts Sound engineering, broadcast technology
Key Duties Maintain sound recording equipment, record, and synchronize sounds and music, edit audio Maintain broadcasting equipment, operate transmitters, edit audio and/or video
Job Growth (2014-2024)* 8% -6%
Average Salary (2015)* $63,340 $44,050

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Recording Arts Technology Programs

Some vocational schools and community colleges offer recording arts technology training in the form of a certificate, which takes approximately one year to complete. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, an associate's or bachelor's degree isn't required for entry-level jobs (www.bls.gov). However, it is best to obtain a degree if you want to eventually advance your career, and particularly if you want to enter the broadcasting arena.

You can pursue a 2-year degree, such as an Associate of Science in Recording Arts and Technology, through a community college. You will take courses such as commercial production, video and audio for television, recording software, sound design, audio techniques, audio for the Internet, and live sound. Programs in Recording Technology are available at some 4-year universities as well. Courses such as music technology and recording techniques are available. Related classes in computers, business, and marketing will round out your education. Mechanical and electronics skills and prior courses in math and physics will be needed.

Career Options

The positions you can obtain depend on the level of training you have had or are willing to acquire. A degree in recording arts technology can translate to a career as a sound effects editor, video and audio technician, or sound assistant in a studio or a broadcast technician. Master control operator and audio engineer are other options.

Job Duties

As a recording arts technician, your duties will vary but may include duplicating music or sound from their original recordings, utilizing consoles to synchronize sound effects and music, operating transmitters, and making repairs to broadcast equipment, as well as mixing and editing sound. You may even work with performers and producers to discover how to achieve the best sound for a movie or recording.

Salary Potential

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that sound engineering technicians in the sound recording industries averaged approximately $52,870 per year as of May 2015 (www.bls.gov). Employees of in the film industry were generally paid more than those working in radio and television. Wages were also affected by the size of the markets that the broadcasting stations were located in.

What Are Some Related Alternative Careers?

Electrical and electronics installers and repairers work with many different kinds of technology, installing, testing, and repairing them as needed for industries like transportation, telecommunications, and utilities, in the same way recording arts technicians will need to make minor repairs on their equipment over time. In order to be hired for this job, you will likely need only some technical training without the need of a degree.

Computer support specialists advise people on how to properly use computer software and hardware, ranging from those who talk to customers and clients to those overseeing other IT employees and assisting them in fixing issues with their own work. They will need a high degree of technical knowledge about computers in order to work effectively, the same as recording arts technicians. Most of these professionals hold associate's degrees, though some may need a bachelor's.

Sound mixers produce music and sound effects used in film and television, adding them to the final product after recording has finished. They have similar duties to recording arts technicians, manipulating recorded sounds to sound right and play at appropriate times, and they may even work together on certain projects. You will need an associate's degree for this job.

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:

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