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How do I Choose the Best Sound Engineer School?

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  • Written By: Carol Francois
  • Edited By: A. Joseph
  • Last Modified Date: 01 December 2016
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The best sound engineer school provides access to industry standard equipment, job-specific training, industry contacts and opportunities to gain workplace experience. A sound engineer works in a recording studio and is responsible for all audio files and recording. Although many community colleges offer courses in sound engineering, they usually are part of a large program in broadcast media. A specialized sound engineering school is dedicated to providing the training and experience opportunities necessary to become a professional sound engineer.

In order to qualify for entrance into the best sound engineer school, you should be dedicated, detail-oriented and have excellent academic credentials. As a post-secondary program, high school graduation usually is required, along with credits in English and technology. Although some high schools offer courses in sound engineering, they are not considered prerequisites for sound engineering schools.

The best sound engineer school is fully equipped with the latest in technology. This profession is very technical in nature and requires significant interaction with sound boards, computer software and audio file creation programs. The equipment used is very expensive and requires a high degree to skill to use correctly. Look for a school that has multiple sound studios and provides access to the equipment to students.

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Take the time to research industry standards in the specific area of sound engineering in which you are interested. For example, some recording companies use only a specific type of file format and digital recording equipment. Others utilize a variety of equipment suppliers. Find out which version of software is the standard, and make sure that the school is able to provide access to the same version.

There often are three or four different programs available from a sound engineer school. All of the programs should include a job placement or cooperative work arrangement. Related experience in the industry is critical to the success of any training program because of the technical nature of a sound engineer's job. This internship might increase the length of the program, but the experience will be worth it. Employment opportunities in sound engineering are very difficult to secure without relevant, current work experience.

The sound recording industry is quite small, and the best sound engineer school provides access to valuable industry contacts. Look for a school that regularly organizes networking events, guest lectures or tours of local recording studios. Take advantage of the opportunity and introduce yourself as a student. It will be very helpful when looking for a job after graduation.

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ZsaZsa56
Post 4

I went to sound engineering school about a decade ago and for me the most rewarding part of the experience was being able to work with industry professionals. It was great to get to use the equipment and we had interesting lectures/history of sound kind of lessons, but I learned the most when I was able to work one to one with an experienced sound engineer that could fix all my mistakes and answer all my questions.

New students looking at sound engineering school should consider where they can get the most individual attention. They should look at class size, class structure and the opportunity for mentoring or personal instruction. I think this kind of intense individual focus leads to much better sound engineers. It is not easy to figure this stuff out on your own and being able to turn to someone makes the learning process a hundred times more rewarding.

nextcorrea
Post 3

As the article mentions, the sound recording industry is pretty small and there are a very limited number of jobs. With this consideration in mind I think sound engineering students might want to consider the cost of the school they plan on attending.

They should plan for the very real possibility that they will struggle to find a job post graduation and it may take months or years to break into the industry. It may not be worth it to attend a particularly expensive top of the line school if this choice is just going to burden you with debt you have no way of paying off post graduation. I know it sounds cynical to say go cheap but trust me, I am speaking from experience.

Azuza
Post 2

@indemnifyme - I agree, learning the latest skills in school is very important.

I think it's important to look for a school that can help you get a job. As the article said, the audio engineering field is small. How likely is it that every one who says "hey, I want to work in the music business" is actually able to?

indemnifyme
Post 1

I just wanted to second what the article said about making sure the school has up to date equipment. Technology changes so fast these days that if you don't learn the current technology in school, you don't have a fighting chance to get a job.

My boyfriend went to school for electronic media and film with a concentration in audio. Luckily, the college we went to was pretty up to date with technology and he was able to get a job.

However, he told me about one of his coworkers who went to a different school and wasn't so lucky. The equipment he learned on was a couple years out of date and he was at a really big disadvantage when he started working-he needed to relearn a lot of things.

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