Audio Visual Technician Education Requirements and Career Information

Sep 15, 2019

Audio visual technicians require some measure of formal education. Learn about the education and job duties as well as the career outlook statistics to see if this is the right career for you.

A/V techs manage various electrical equipment for a number of industries. An applicable associate or bachelor's degree is usually required for most positions in this growing field.

Essential Information

Audio visual technicians set up, operate and perform light maintenance on sound equipment, film and video cameras and display monitors. Traditionally employed in the broadcasting and movie industries, their opportunities have expanded to include schools and corporations. Most of these professionals complete some formal training prior to finding employment.

Required Education Associate's or bachelor's degree in film, video or television broadcasting
Projected Job Growth (2018-2028)* 12% for audio and video equipment technicians
Median Annual Salary (2018)* $43,770 for audio and video equipment technicians

Sources: *United States Bureau of Labor Statistics

Education Requirements for Audio Visual Technicians

Audio visual technicians do not need a degree for entry level positions, but a 2-year associate's degree or 4-year bachelor's degree in film, video or TV broadcasting enhances prospects for employment and advancement. Degree programs are likely to cover the basics of audio technology, video technology, projection and presentation systems, film and TV production techniques, lighting, computer graphics and post production. Students take part in a series of projects that acquaint them first hand with the performance capabilities of audio and video equipment.

Job Duties and Skills

Audio and video technicians set up recording equipment, mixing boards, microphones, speakers, projectors, video screens and video monitors. They then operate these components indoors at news conferences, conventions and sporting contests and outdoors on news shoots and other on-location assignments. Technicians also install and maintain equipment for corporations and universities. Manual dexterity, technical acumen and a good eye and ear for sound and image quality are their most essential capabilities.

Career Information

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment of audio visual technicians should grow much faster than the national average through 2028. Demand at schools for installation and maintenance of audio visual equipment, corporate use of equipment and increased use of digital signage are among the factors predicted to drive growth. The television, cable television, video, film, and multimedia industries should also provide job opportunities, but the competition for them is likely to be intense. In May 2018, the BLS reported that workers in the 90th percentile or higher earned $80,130 or more per year, whereas the bottom 10th percentile earned $25,590 or less per year.

To become an audio visual technician, one must possess keen sonic sensibility along with good hand-eye coordination. Entry-level jobs may not require a professional degree, but the majority of employers seek those with postsecondary training. Jobs in this field are expected to grow at a faster than average rate for all occupations, but there may be tough competition for those jobs.

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