PROFESSIONAL SOUND DIPLOMA (AUDIO SPECIALIST)
For those seeking the ultimate career in audio, we offer our two-year Professional Sound (Audio Specialist) program. With a curriculum encompassing all aspects of the audio world, from inside the recording studio to the live stage, this program is the professional sound engineer’s ultimate educational experience.
- Graduates earn a Diploma in Professional Sound as an Audio Specialist.
- Full-time, two year program strategically designed to get you thoroughly trained in all aspects of recorded sound and live sound.
- Intensive practical experience in the theories and artistic styles used to setup and operate audio equipment for a variety of studio and live event applications.
- Extensive study and practical hands-on experience in the areas of analog and digital recording technologies, acoustic principles, music production, MIDI and audio signal processing applications.
- Extensive study and practical hands-on experience in the areas of analog and digital sound reinforcement technologies.
- Prepare for a career as a recording engineer for music, film and television post-production, digital media and a wide variety of live sound applications such as a FOH engineer, monitor engineer or audio system tech.
- Incredible opportunities to network and collaborate with students in other Metalworks Institute programs.
- Our exclusive educational partnership with Metalworks Studios and Metalworks Production Group provides students with unprecedented learning environments and networking opportunities.
- The Professional Sound – Audio Specialist program is approved by the Ontario Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities under the Private Career Colleges Act 2005.
AREAS OF STUDY
- Recording Engineering & Recording Studio Techniques
- Live Audio Systems
- Music Production
- Live Recording & Mixing
- Music Software & Digital Workstation Technologies
- Audio Post-Production for Film and Television
- Live Analog and Digital Consoles
- MIDI and Synthesis
- Acoustic Principles
- Critical Listening
- Music Theory & Applications
- Musical Styles & Genres
- Electricity and Electronics Principles
- Entertainment Business & Contracts
- Live Stage Monitoring Systems
- Audio Signal Processing Techniques
- Employment Strategies
- Health & Safety in the Live Event Industry
- Theoretical and Practical Electricity and Electronics
- Show Systems Maintenance
- Audio Signal Processing Techniques
- Show System Installations
- Applicants must have an OSSD or equivalent
- Mature applicants are welcome to apply.
- Acceptance to the program is limited and subject to an academic assessment and acceptance interview.
- It is also expected that applicant’s demonstrate keen interest in the recording, studio and live sound industries, possess creative aptitude and computer literacy.
- Program applications and a guide to the application process can be found at https://metalworksinstitute.com
- 2 Year Full-Time Program
- 1620 Hours of Instruction
- Typical class hours range between 20-24 hours per week
- 12-15 additional study hours per week are highly recommended
Courses: Professional Sound (Audio Specialist)
What is the business of entertainment? What is the relationship between creating music and art, and earning money from that art? What are the elements that make up this industry, and how do they connect and intersect to create the vast array of entertainment content that we watch, hear and see? During this course, students will be introduced to the music, broadcast, motion picture, game and live event industries and their various subsidiaries. Students will examine the nature of intellectual property and copyright, discuss the often conflicting relationship between art and commerce, and examine the relationship between content creators and consumers.
In this course, students will be introduced to the practical applications used in the recording and editing of sound for motion pictures. Students will be introduced to various post-production principles and techniques, and apply that knowledge through hands-on workshop exercises. This course will focus on the practical recording and editing techniques used in sound design, dialogue, sound effects, Foley, and music for film, television, video games, and mobile apps.
Our Audio Post Production course will introduce students to the basic principles behind the use of sound in motion pictures, television, video games, and other visual entertainment media. Students will explore the history of sound in movies, and learn the primary terms and concepts in the field of post-production. This course will also introduce students to the skills utilized by the key personnel in the post-production world, such as sound designers, sound editors, dialogue editors, sound effects editors, music editors, and re-recording mixers.
This course will introduce students to the business side of music. Students will gain an understanding of the basic concepts of intellectual property and copyright, before examining how songwriters and recording artists can generate income from their music. Students will learn the important role of music publishers in this process, and discuss basic publishing concepts and agreements. This course will also examine important terms and agreements involved in the placement of music in film, television and video games. Students will also discuss the legal ramifications of selling and streaming music online, and the importance of protecting one’s music in the digital age.
The ability to focus on subtle differences in sound is an essential skill of a music producer or recording engineer. This course will introduce students to the techniques used by producers to develop their own critical listening skills. Students will utilize weekly in-class exercises, and comparative analysis of different styles of mixing to help identify the sonic features which can positively or negatively impact a final audio mix.
The Digital Audio Workshop introduces students to the practical skills of recording and editing music using digital applications, and builds on knowledge gained in the Digital Technologies course. Students will hone and develop their recording skills using digital technologies, and will undertake a comprehensive exploration of Pro Tools, and the techniques involved in recording and editing music on a Digital Audio Workstation.
The use of Digital Audio Workstations has become the norm in today’s digital world. It’s vital that today’s music creators understand the nature of Pro Tools, Logic, Ableton, and other popular DAWs. In our Digital Technologies course, students will learn the fundamentals of recording and editing in a digital environment. Students will explore digital audio basics, including hardware, software and interfaces, via a combination of class lectures and in-class exercises and demos, and learn how to record and edit music like the pros.
This course allows students to learn and develop the skills required to obtain meaningful employment within the music and entertainment industries. Students will be introduced to basic job search skills and strategies such as resume writing, networking, and the development of life and career goals. Through the use of practical assignments and in-class exercises, students will learn to enhance their marketability, and develop the tools needed to seek out and secure employment within the entertainment industry. This course will also explore both current and potential employment opportunities within the entertainment industries.
The challenge of recording and mixing a live performance is altogether different from recording and mixing in studio. Our Live Recording & Mixing course will offer students a thorough exploration of the acoustical, musical and technical aspects of the live performance. During this course, students will be presented with different live and studio recordings in order to better understand artistic mix choices. Students will learn to apply their knowledge of various instrument sounds, microphones, equalization, and dynamics processing and the systems used for recording and mixing live performances.
The MIDI & Synthesis workshop will build upon the theoretical and creative principles of synthesizers, synthesis and MIDI protocol gained through the MIDI and Synthesis course. Students are introduced to the use of synthesizers, and the creative application of keyboards, hardware and software as they apply to songwriting and producing music.
In this course, students will gain a thorough understanding of the fundamental principles of synthesizers, synthesis and the MIDI protocol. Students will learn the history of MIDI and synthesizers, understand the terminology associated with both, and understand the practical applications of keyboards, synthesizers, and MIDI hardware and software.
What is the role of the music producer? What does a music producer really do? This course will delve into the technical, creative and business responsibilities of record producers. Students will discuss the importance of communication in the studio, and examine the various creative, business and management responsibilities of the producer. This course will also provide students with a primer on today’s top music producers, and a discussion of the changing role of the producer throughout modern music history.
The Music Theory course will provide a broad overview of the basic and advanced elements of music theory and composition. Students are introduced to music notation, structure, terms and symbols, chord structures and scales, and will use and apply that knowledge through practical exercises to compose music. Students will also learn the key concepts of harmony and arranging, and apply those concepts to their own songs and compositions via practical exercises.
The Musical Styles & Genres course will offer students an overview of the key figures, moments and movements over the past century that impacted our culture. Along with music, this course will also introduce students to the evolution of art, literature, film, television, and other outlets for our culture, explore the connection between the various media styles and genres, and discuss how the past has informed the present, and future, of art, music and culture.
Resistors, capacitors, inductors, transistors…? The study of electricity and electronics involves a sizeable menu of terms and terminology that can leave many people baffled. Our Principles of Electricity & Electronics course will provide students with a step-by-step introduction to those basic terms and concepts, which are vitally important to anyone working in the live events industry. Students will learn about electric charges, electromagnetic fields, electric currents, circuits and fields, and how electricity is used in the live event industry. Our course will explore analog and digital electronics, including the basic circuits found in most electronic instruments. In the end, students will be well-versed in the meaning and use of resistors, capacitors, inductors and transistors.
Being a good audio engineer or producer goes beyond microphones, consoles and digital editing. Being a good engineer also means being able to understand the fundamental properties of sound and acoustics, and how acoustics affect the quality of sound in a studio or live environment. In this course, students will learn how sound works, why we hear what we hear, and how our ears receive and conceive sounds. This exploration of sound will involve a comprehensive overview of physics, allowing students to understand the important principles of acoustics, wave propagation, and auditory perception.
In this course, students will experience the fundamentals of recording, and come to understand the important theoretical, technical, creative and artistic principles of sound. Students will explore the use of microphones, the fundamentals of recording studio equipment, the use of consoles, and the proper protocols and etiquette required in the studio. Students will also learn of microphone placement, signal paths, and the varying studio environments, both live and broadcast. By the end of this course, students should have the requisite skills and knowledge to regard themselves as professional recording engineers.
This course will allow students to apply the knowledge and skills they gain in the Recording Engineering course in a practical, hands-on setting. Students will apply their knowledge of microphones, signal flow, recording studio gear and consoles, and recording studio etiquette, and apply that knowledge and skill-set in a proper recording studio environment. As they develop their skills and experience in the studio, students will begin acting and thinking as professional recording engineers.
We all wince in pain when we hear that hair-raising microphone feedback during a live show. The sound is usually followed by the sight of dozens of heads turning and shooting a puzzled and angry look at the sound techs. For the live sound engineer, the urgent question is, where did that sound come from, how can I fix it, and how can it be avoided in future? In Show System Maintenance, students will learn how to troubleshoot and repair any number of problems that can arise during a live event. This course will learn how to properly test and maintain live show systems, and how to quickly deal with issues that may arise during a live show.
This course will provide students with comprehensive insight into the technical, creative and artistic principles of sound and show production systems through practical application. During this course, students will apply theoretical knowledge to live practical applications of microphones, audio signal flow, cables, connectors, consoles, console operation, amplifiers and speaker systems. Students will also be encouraged to begin acting and thinking as live sound engineers and to develop strong engineering communication skills.
The house lights go down, the audience roars as the artist appears, and suddenly the crowd is moving to the booming rhythms sweeping through the arena. But where are the sounds coming from, how does it go from the stage to our ears, and who’s responsible for making it all work? The Show Production Systems course will provide students with the foundation for the production of live sound in a concert setting. Students are introduced to microphones, signal flow, cables, connectors, consoles, amplifiers, and speaker systems, and learn to understand how sounds are conveyed from the artist on stage, to the audience in the seats. By the end of this course, students will begin acting and thinking as live sound engineers, and further develop the strong communication skills needed in the production of live events.
What is a hit song? What are the elements that go into a successful, popular song? Our Songwriting Analysis course will offer students insight into the techniques used by top songwriters to craft memorable and popular songs. Students will examine an array of popular songs for their lyrical content, melodies, chord progressions, rhythm, form, arrangement, and production styles, to better understand what makes a popular, marketable and memorable song.
We see them every time we go to a concert, those men and women climbing rope ladders and catwalks to handle the lighting and sound systems. Without them, there are no concerts, but few of us understand the important, and sometimes dangerous, work that they do. This course will explore the basics of production rigging for live events, while placing particular emphasis on the safety practices required in this risk-filled occupation. Students will explore the common types of rigging systems and components, the methods of flying stage elements, and the use of various types of knots in stage rigging systems.
As the size and scope of concerts and other live events continue to grow, the live events industry faces ongoing challenges in maintaining the health and safety of workers, performers and fans at these live events. This course will delve into some of the health and safety issues inherent in the live event industry, such as crowd management, temporary staging, working at heights, working with electricity and other important safety elements. We will examine important case studies of past tragic incidents in the performance industry and look at how such incidents can be avoided in the future.