This sound engineering and music production course offers our students a unique opportunity to learn all aspects of sound production.
This is delivered in a working commercial environment by music industry professionals, offering an experience unmatched by other music colleges.
"We believe the unique set-up at Riverside contributes towards making this the best sound engineering course in Scotland"
Duncan Cameron, Senior Lecturer
Partial funding towards course fees is available from SAAS. Please see the fees and funding section for full details.
Our emphasis is on ‘hands on’ learning, allowing our students to develop a portfolio of work and ready them for their future careers or studies. From day one, you will receive expert practical tuition from our team of professional sound engineers who will teach you the technical skills and professional 'best practice' to enable you to further your career in the music industry.
We believe that it is vital that you gain experience using the very best audio hardware and software to enable you to flourish in the modern recording industry. At Riverside we are constantly investing in our studio facilities to provide the highest quality learning environment.
Music Production Careers
On completion of our music production courses candidates can enter into a wide choice of careers in the creative industries. Articulation paths include: Sound Engineering, Live Sound, Sound Design, Acoustics, and Audio Post Production for TV and Film.
(SCQF Level 7)
Minimum of one Higher (band C or above), PLUS passes in two other subjects at NAT 5 or equivalent.
2 Years (HNC can be obtained after one academic year)
August - June
You will learn about the human hearing system and how sound is perceived by the ear. The unit also looks at the behaviour of sound waves in different physical environments. Music performed in a concert hall sounds very different to music performed in a pub. Learning about the reasons for these differences will enable you to make adjustments depending upon the environment that you are working in.
Digital Audio Workstations 1
You will learn about the specification of a digital audio workstation and gain practical knowledge of manipulating and recording sound. The unit will provide you with the skills to produce a final production master from a sound engineering project.
Working in the Creative Industries
The creative industry is a challenging yet hugely rewarding career path. You will develop your existing experience, abilities and personal qualities and learn how to make the most of them in the context of the music industry. The unit encourages entrepreneurship, looking at ways that you can turn your own ideas into viable business opportunities.
Creative Industries Infrastructure
You will learn about the main commercial organisations involved in the creative industries. The unit provides an overview of the working practices and relationships between the various organisations and agencies. You will also learn how to access these organisations and the nature of their role. In a music industry context, you will learn about agencies such as the PRS, MCPS, PPL and Musicians Union and how they play a vital role in supporting the economic viability of the industry.
Music Sequencing and Programming
You will learn about using computer systems, such as Reason, to create musical compositions. For musicians this unit is useful for gaining technical insight into the production process. For sound production students, there is an opportunity to develop your creative skills in a technical context.
Sound Production Practice 1
You will gain the knowledge and skills necessary to test and properly connect audio recording equipment. The unit covers the process of recording audio signals, using best practice to ensure that the signal is free from distortion and other unwanted audio artefacts.
Sound Production Theory 1
This unit serves as preparation for the practical sound recording units by giving you an understanding of fundamental sound production theory. The topics covered in this unit provide a broad knowledge base, which will prove useful across the whole spectrum of audio production careers.
Sound Production: Multi-track Recording
You will learn about the practice of multi-track recording and production and develop the fundamental audio engineering skills that are necessary in the typical multi-track recording studio environment. You will develop the knowledge and practical skills that are required for a career in the sound engineering field.
Sound Production: Multi-track Mixing
You will learn to understand the processes involved in producing a multi-track mix. The unit gives you the opportunity to learn to appreciate and analyse the subtleties of the mixing techniques used in professional recordings. You will also learn the practical skills and gain experience of using the mixing console and will be able to demonstrate the ability to produce a polished final mix.
Sound Production: Sound Reinforcement 1
The sound reinforcement unit is primarily geared towards students looking to build a career in live sound engineering. You will develop and build upon your existing microphone selection and placement skills and learn the correct techniques to apply high-powered amplification to a variety of sound sources. The unit also covers the organisational skills required in order to work professionally in the sound reinforcement field.
Sound Production: Graded Unit 1
This Unit is designed to provide evidence that the candidate has achieved the following principal aims of the HNC Sound Production:
- analyse and synthesise knowledge and skills acquired through study
- develop study, organisational and research skills
- develop competencies in a range of specialised areas of their choice in line with their preferred career aims
- prepare candidates for progression to further study in sound or a related discipline
- adopt innovation and creativity in their work and be able to respond quickly to the challenges posed by changes in the music or audio industries
Candidates will plan and produce a portfolio of work that could be used to showcase their ability in, for example a job application or interview situation for either employment or further study. They will also evaluate their effectiveness when planning and producing the portfolio.