Audio Engineering Courses

General Information

      A series of four classes in audio engineering provide students with hands-on learning opportunities in: Fundamentals of sound, multi-track recording/mixing/editing, automation, etc. These courses are also a core part of the Multimedia Arts Technology major and are taught at WSS and in the lab in Kohrman Hall. Our students have distinguished themselves by winning numerous Downbeat Magazine Student Engineering awards as well as a First Place from the Audio Engineering Society Recording Competition. Classes in recording at WMU are unusual in that admission is open to students from any major at the university, space permitting.

MUS 1940 - Introduction to Audio Engineering


      This course will introduce the student to the fundamentals of audio engineering. The course begins with the basics of how sound propagates and how we perceive it, and moves on to examine the devices that are used to capture (microphones), route (consoles), store (analog and digital recording), manipulate (EQ, compression, reverb, etc.) and listen back (speakers) to recordings. The course requires no previous experience with audio engineering and is open to students from any major at the university, space permitting. MUS1940 is taught in our new lab in 2206 Kohrman Hall. The instructor's assessment of each student's performance in this course will determine which students will be allowed to proceed to upper-level courses in audio engineering.

MUS 2940 - Multi-track Recording


      This is a course in the theory and techniques of multi-track recording and mixing. Students begin with an in-depth study of the signal flow of a recording/mixing console and the basics of pro tools. The goal of this course is for students to become familiar with how to get signals in and out of the workstation/recorder and to provide multiple headphone mixes to the musicians; in short, to learn the basics of how to run recording sessions. Students also study the most commonly used signal processors and how they might be used during recording or mixing for best results. Various listening assignments introduce students to the subtleties of mixing. A final project is required wherein each student must organize and execute a full multi-track production, from microphone selection through the final mix.

MUS 3940 - Advanced Multi-track Recording I


      Advanced Multi-track Recording is the third course in the sequence of classes in audio engineering in the School of Music. Students will spend several weeks learning pro tools software and hardware in depth, as well as mono/stereo microphone techniques, and advanced uses of compression, reverb and delay. Students are required to complete two recording/mixing projects. Prerequisite is the successful completion of MUS 5960 Multi-track Recording.

MUS 4940 - Advanced Multi-track Recording II


      Advanced Mulit-track Recording II is the fourth course in the sequence of audio engineering classes in the School of Music. The goal of the course is for students to learn how to marry their technical knowledge with assessments of client’s goals and budgets, session planning, set-ups, etc., in order to deliver professional quality recording services. Students will also learn how to properly synchronize multiple audio recorders. Appropriate preparation of mixes for mastering or replication will also be discussed. Close listening skills will also be developed through demonstrations of microphone and pre-amp selection. Students are required to complete two recording projects. Prerequisite is the successful completion of MUS 5990 Advanced Multi-track Recording I.