Full Sail University: A Hands-On Music & Recording Education
Published on Nov 4, 2022 by Abby Stassen
Full Sail University is rooted in music education: It launched in 1979 with workshops in a recording studio, and some of its earliest classes were held in a mobile audio truck called the Dream Machine. Today, students in music and recording degree programs have access to professional studios, industry-standard equipment, and live event venues on the university’s 210-acre campus.
The university’s degree programs have also received numerous shout-outs from industry publications. In Tune Monthly named Full Sail one of its Best Music Schools in 2018 and 2022. Intelligent included Full Sail on its list of Best Online Bachelor’s in Music Programs in 2022. All music and recording students learn music business fundamentals, and the standalone Music Business bachelor’s program (launched in 2009) was recognized by Billboard magazine as one of their Top Music Business Schools in 2022.
Music & Recording Degrees and Certificates at Full Sail University
Full Sail’s Music & Recording degrees and certificates offer specialized training to prepare students for specific roles in the music and recording industry.
Audio Arts Certificate
The Audio Arts Certificate program teaches audio production basics. Students learn how to independently create audio projects by developing, recording, music creation, sequencing, and editing skills.
Audio Production bachelor’s degree
The Audio Production bachelor’s program covers fundamentals like music business basics, production essentials, and post-production techniques to help entrepreneurial students become independent audio creators.
Music Production bachelor’s degree
The Music Production bachelor’s degree program is ideal for students who want to create their own music and songs, including scores for film and television and compositions for video games. The program covers the entire creation process from music theory and composition to advanced production and engineering tools.
Recording Arts bachelor’s degree
Students who’d like to help other artists craft their sound will find a home in the Recording Arts bachelor’s degree program. They learn how to use industry-standard equipment to record sessions with musicians, then mix and master the results. The program also covers sound effects for film, television, and video games.
Show Production bachelor’s degree
The Show Production bachelor’s degree program trains students to produce live events from concerts to sports broadcasts to corporate functions. The classes teach concepts like lighting and programming, live video production, concert design, and audio systems.
A Campus for Music
Full Sail’s music and recording roots are evident in its campus facilities. The university’s recording studios, lab spaces, and live event production venues give students hands-on experience with industry-standard equipment.
The Audio Temple is Full Sail’s flagship recording studio. It offers state-of-the-art equipment, including an SSL Duality Hybrid console and a Yamaha Disklavier grand piano. Students can work on their own projects in the Audio Temple or watch professional musicians lay down tracks.
Full Sail’s campus also has four additional studio spaces with consoles from API, Audient, and Rupert Neve Designs. In Studio A, students practice post-production work on professional analog and digital equipment, including individual Pro Tools workstations. More than two dozen vocal, post-production, and music and audio post-mixing suites are also on campus, including the Raven Lab, where students gain experience using Raven production consoles.
Full Sail’s Dolby-approved dubbing stage is a post-production facility where students learn how to add audio elements – like dialogue, sound effects, and music – to a film’s final cut. The stage contains high-definition video projectors, Pro Tools HD systems, a surround sound system, and theater seats for private screenings.
Full Sail Live Venue
Full Sail Live is a 22,000-square-foot venue with seating for up to 500 people. It has hosted everything from large concerts to professional wrestling matches. During events, music and recording students can practice running lights, sound, and video on high-end equipment from the venue’s control room.
The Treehouse is Full Sail’s student-run live performance venue. It has a coffee-shop atmosphere that’s perfect for open mic nights, live music sessions, talent shows, guest speakers, university parties, and more.
Online students also get hands-on, real-world learning experiences thanks to Full Sail’s Project LaunchBox. Each student is sent a degree-specific set of equipment, like MacBook Pros, audio interfaces, MIDI keyboards, microphones, and programs like Pro Tools and Logic to help them build their portfolios from home. Campus students also receive a LaunchBox to complete their assignments and augment their classroom experiences.
Graduate Success Stories
The Full Sail music and recording experience is best reflected in its successful graduates. A few examples include graduates Josh Gudwin and Leslie Brathwaite, who have both won Grammys for their mixing, recording, and music production work. Grad Alexandria Perryman is an Audio Engineer at NASA’s Johnson Space Center, while alum Justin Rathbun is the A1 and Production Sound Engineer on Broadway’s Hamilton. David Farmer is a Supervising Sound Editor and Sound Designer who has worked on movies like the Lord of the Rings trilogy and Thor: Ragnarok, plus games like BioShock 2.
Interested in music and recording? Take a look at Full Sail’s Music & Recording degrees here.
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