Audio Engineering, A.A.S.

Academic Programs

Start Term

Program Options

Degree, Certificate or Diploma


Council Bluffs Campus

Program Information

Students working toward an Audio Engineering Associate of Applied Science degree typically intend to go right into the workplace upon completion of this two-year degree, although some individual courses may transfer to a four-year institution. Students in this program will learn about all aspects of music production, including the fundamentals of analog and digital audio and span live music reinforcement, digital audio recording, critique and analysis of recorded music, and the mixing and mastering process.

Students will be introduced to fundamental music terminology and analysis of instrumentation, form, and production techniques as they apply to popular musical genres. In addition to working in state-of-the-art facilities, including a fully outfitted recording studio and a Pro Tools computer lab, students are given opportunities to apply their skills at department and campus-wide events. Through internships with local music businesses, students gain valuable experience with industry professionals.

Job Outlook

4,980 Jobs (2020)

+5.2% Change from 2020-20205

Data is from the Omaha Metropolitans Area, and the seven counties in Southwest Iowa that Iowa Western serves

What will you do

This program is designed for students intending to enter the workforce upon completion of the two-year Associate of Applied Science degree. Graduates are prepared for careers as live audio engineers, and ready to own and operate their own studio as recording and mixing engineers, assist with their own musical groups by recording rehearsals and performances, or apply their skills to post-production by understanding audio for other media such as video, video games, and the web.


  • Entry: $22.20
  • Average: $32.78
  • Experienced: $73.58

Career Examples

  • Audio Engineer
  • Entrepreneur
  • Recording Artist
  • Sound Technician
  • Studio Manager

First Semester

MUS 102 - Music Fundamentals 3.0 Credit(s)
MUS 305 - Introduction to Audio 3.0 Credit(s)
MUS 306 - Digital Audio Production I 3.0 Credit(s)
MUS 320 - Technical Music Practicum I 1.0 Credit(s)
ENG 110 - Writing For The Workplace 3.0 Credit(s)
MAT 711 - Business and Financial Mathematics 3.0 Credit(s)

Semester Total: 16.0 Credits

Second Semester

MUS 307 - Digital Audio Production II 3.0 Credit(s)
MUS 325 - Mix Listening I 3.0 Credit(s)
MUS 328 - Virtual Instrument and Processing Plug-Ins 3.0 Credit(s)
MUS 310 - Recording Project I 1.0 Credit(s)
MUS 321 - Technical Music Practicum II 1.0 Credit(s)
BUS 130 - Introduction to Entrepreneurship 3.0 Credit(s)

Semester Total: 14.0 Credits

Third Semester

MUS 311 - Recording Project II 1.0 Credit(s)
MUS 326 - Mix Listening II 3.0 Credit(s)
MUS 330 - Audio Mixing I 3.0 Credit(s)
MUS 333 - Popular Music Analysis 3.0 Credit(s)
MUS 322 - Technical Music Practicum III 1.0 Credit(s)
ART 125 - Digital Media 3.0 Credit(s)

Semester Total: 14.0 Credits

Fourth Semester

MUS 312 - Recording Project III 1.0 Credit(s)
MUS 331 - Audio Mixing II 3.0 Credit(s)
MUS 335 - Audio Mastering 3.0 Credit(s)
MUS 323 - Technical Music Practicum IV 1.0 Credit(s)
MUS 936 - Audio Engineering Internship 2.0 Credit(s)
MGT 195 - Workplace Empowerment 3.0 Credit(s)
  • Social Science Elective 3.0 Credit(s)
  • Semester Total: 16.0 Credits

    Total Semester Hours Required: 60.0


    Additional Information

    Contact Us

    Program Outcomes

    Upon the successful completion of the program students will:

    • Demonstrate an understanding of the technical process of audio production in both live performance and recording studio environments.
    • Demonstrate an understanding of the aesthetic considerations of audio production in both live performance and recording studio environments.
    • Demonstrate a basic understanding of the process of owning and operating a new business.
    • Utilize appropriate methods for demonstrating examples of completed work.
    • Use professional judgment and ethics in the student’s interactions with colleagues, other members of the musical community, and community as a whole.

    Program Disclaimers

    • Salary information from EMSI Analyst Database