Worship services are often accompanied by music, large churches often need ministers and pastors to be microphoned, and many churches record services for later use. This article looks at both undergraduate and graduate audio and sound engineering programs available at Christian colleges.
Audio and sound engineering programs are available across the country. The table below highlights the tuition rates for several Christian-affiliated schools that offer programs in this field.
|School Name||Institution Type||Denomination||Location||Undergraduate Tuition (2017-2018)*|
|Lancaster Bible College||4-year, private not-for-profit||Non-denominational||Lancaster, PA||$22,580|
|Northwest Christian University||4-year, private not-for-profit||Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)||Eugene, OR||$28,680|
|Visible Music College||4-year, private not-for-profit||Interdenominational||Memphis, TN||$19,500|
|Belmont University||4-year, private not-for-profit||Interdenominational||Nashville, TN||$32,820|
|Cornerstone University||4-year, private not-for-profit||Interdenominational||Grand Rapids, MI||$27,520|
Source: *National Center for Education Statistics (NCES)
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Summary of Audio Programs at Christian Colleges
Audio and sound engineering programs at Christian-affiliated schools can be found at both the undergraduate and graduate level. The schools featured below each offer unique spiritual experiences combined with a degree in audio production/engineering.
Lancaster Bible College
The main campus for Lancaster Bible College is located in Lancaster, PA; however, there are four other campuses that offer programs. If you want to study audio and sound, you can enroll in the Bachelor of Fine Arts in Live Production program. Along with hands-on experience producing on-campus events, students will take courses in live sound, worship arts, staging and illumination, Christian song, stage technologies, and acoustics. Chapel attendance is a requirement on campus. for both resident and commuting students.
Northwest Christian University (NCU)
The music industry concentration within the Bachelor of Arts in Music program at Northwest Christian University prepares students for careers in audio engineering, recording, and production. Some of the course topics include arranging and orchestrating, live sound production, studio techniques, and lighting and design. If students are interested in hands-on practice, they can join the Grove Tech and Production team, which helps out with chapel worship. Missions trips have taken students around the globe to help at hospices, rehab centers and orphanages. Students are required to attend at least 20 services at chapel each semester. Student athletes, known as Beacons, may be interested in one of the twelve Christ-centered teams at NCU.
Visible Music College
At this interdenominational college, worship is at the heart of education and student life. Student-led worship is held weekly on Tuesday and Thursday morning, and guides spiritual growth with song and music. Living on campus is a requirement for first- and second-year students. Included with housing costs are breakfasts and lunches at the campus café. There are three locations in total for this school: Memphis, Dallas, and Chicago. The bachelor's program in music production prepares students to work with software such as Logic and ProTools. Students in this program handle all the sound at events for the college for experience.
Nicknamed Music City, Nashville is sure to provide audio programs that interest sound engineering enthusiasts, such as the one at Belmont University. The Audio Engineering Technology program is offered as a Bachelor of Science or Bachelor of Arts degree, depending on which will work best for you. Belmont also offers a Master of Science in Audio Engineering, rounding out both undergraduate and graduate educations. Along with chapel and service opportunities, students who have been accepted to Belmont have the opportunity to attend the summer Towering Traditions program. During this time, students go through an orientation and sign up for essentials on campus while learning about Christian life on campus.
In the communications & media department, students can earn a Bachelor of Arts in Audio Production. Through this program, you'll learn how to work with live sound, audio editing, mixing, and post production. You'll prepare a portfolio of sound pieces for after graduation and gain hands-on experience with an internship or practicum. Some courses students will take are music technology, digital media, mastering, music producing, mixing, music business, and dissecting popular music. On campus, students focus on the nine Christian values that Cornerstone University encourages. These nine attributes are part of the Cornerstone Virtue Project, and students will learn to bring God and His Word into every aspect of life and education.