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Schools for Music Production in the United States

Higher Education Articles January 17, 2013

Sound engineers, marketers, managers and artists rely on music producers to oversee the completion of an album. Aspiring music producers can complete music or audio production degree programs where they can hone their musical and technical skills along with gaining in-depth knowledge about the business aspects of the music industry.

Selecting the Right Music Production School

Music producers need to have in-depth knowledge of both technical and professional aspects as relating to the recording industry. Therefore, aspiring music producers looking for the right music production school to enroll into should opt for a recording arts program where coursework includes instruction in sound engineering, in addition to communications and business.

Candidates are also required to choose between completing a two-year associate degree program and a four-year degree program. The four-year degree program includes more courses in business-related topics such as project management, business writing and music production. There are somewhat more robust programs offered where coursework includes instruction on devising marketing production plans, crucial in gauging and defining an album’s success. Some schools offer programs devised to train students to perform music production aimed specifically at visual media such as films and video games.

Music production programs also include technical training. Prospective music producers should try and enroll in programs that provide their students access to newest computer software and audio equipment. They should look at programs that offer practical experience such as internships or co-op sessions. Sound engineering, music theory, production and mixing techniques should be covered by classes that focus on technical education. Students should be taught on how to use software such as Logic Pro, Final Cut Pro and Avid.

Overview of Music Production Programs

Associate Degree Program in Music Production

Technical skills related to audio production are the focus of coursework in associate degree programs. Copyright law and business management are also part of such coursework. Students are expected to satisfy general education prerequisites in humanities, social sciences and math. In some programs, credits are allowed to be earned from internships. Majority of associate degree courses last two years; however, some schools offer accelerated programs where full-time students can complete such programs within a year. Admission criteria require candidates to possess a high school diploma or equivalent qualification.

Bachelor Degree Program in Music Production

While a number of technical courses included in associate degree programs are offered in bachelor degree program, the latter afford students greater opportunities in being able to take advanced production courses or develop a specialty. Concepts in analysis, harmony, management, studio techniques and sound synthesis are covered in a four-year degree program. It is possible for students to complete a capstone project and an internship.

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