An audio engineer manipulates the music and sound that is recorded for television, music, radio and video games. Those who earn a master's degree in the field can gain more opportunities for career advancement. A 2-year Master of Science in audio engineering program should provide students with an in-depth understanding of the various methods and systems used to record and manipulate sounds. These programs are often interdisciplinary and combine courses from the fields of electrical engineering, computer science, audio technology and music.
Applicants need to have a bachelor's degree in audio technology or a related field. Students may have the option to choose a specialization, such as recording and production or acoustical science. Most students enrolled in a master's degree program also have to complete a final thesis or recording project before graduating.
Master's Degree in Audio Engineering
The curriculum of a master's degree program in audio engineering prepares graduates for careers in sound engineering, broadcast engineering, digital multimedia art and music business. An undergraduate degree is required to gain entrance into a graduate program in audio engineering. Typical applicants majored in audio production, audio recording, electrical engineering and music recording. A master's degree in audio engineering overviews the audio recording industry and covers audio engineering technology. Common courses include:
- Advanced music production
- Post production
- Advanced sound editing
- Electronics and filters
- Advanced project management
- Dubbing and multi-channel mixing
Popular Career Options
Program graduates can assume various roles at audio engineering and recording companies. Some specific career titles available to graduates of a master's degree program in audio engineering include:
- Sound engineering technician
- Broadcast engineering technician
- Audio engineer
- Sound mixer
- Transmission engineer
- Sound and post production editor
Employment Outlook and Salary Information
Broadcast and sound engineering technicians earned a median annual salary of $41,780 as of May 2015, according to the U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS, www.bls.gov). The BLS also reported that, from 2014-2024, broadcast and sound engineering technicians were expected to see a 7% growth rate in employment.
The majority of employers in the television, broadcast and media industries do not require that audio engineers gain certification or licensure. However, some organizations do offer certification programs, and those credentials can add a boost to resumes in a competitive job market. The Society of Broadcast Engineers offers certification examinations for audio engineers at different academic levels. The certification exams are designed to make sure recipients meet professional industry standards and are familiar with the basic duties of audio engineers.
Students interested in working as an audio engineer can enroll in a master's degree program to study in-depth audio production and recording. Often, graduates go on to take certification programs to be more competitive in the job market.