Course details

Study options

Full-time: 1 year, Part-time: 2 years

UK fee

£9,000 for the full course or £1,000 per 20 credits* (2024/25)

International fee

£14,900 for the full course (2024/25)

Course level




Start dates

September, January


Markeaton Street, Derby Campus

Drive the next generation of audio technology with the help of this distinctive masters programme. Underpinned by pioneering research, excellent teaching and first-rate facilities, our MSc Audio Engineering equips you with the skills and knowledge valued most by employers in the rapidly changing and dynamic field of audio engineering.

Iustin Sandu working at a sound desk

Audio Engineering graduate joins research team at world-leading company

Iustin Sandu has achieved his dream – becoming part of the research and development team at one of the world-leading audio system manufacturers, d&b audiotechnik in Germany, after completing our MSc Audio Engineering.

Read Iustin's storyRead Iustin's story

This MSc programme enables graduates with good first degrees in Electronic Engineering, Music Technology or similar subjects to develop the higher-level expertise they need to enter the specialist field of audio engineering. With a flexible part-time study option available, it also represents an excellent route for professionals already working within the sector to upgrade their skills and understanding.

At the forefront of industry developments

Audio engineering is a well-developed and far-reaching field encompassing subjects such as loudspeaker and microphone design, analogue and digital electronics, digital signal processing, acoustics, psychoacoustics, computer programing and beyond.

There is a widespread need for audio engineers in these fields and the skills you gain on the MSc will set you apart as a high-calibre, well-trained and forward-thinking professional.

The course is designed with a focus on innovation and critical thinking. When you graduate, you will be capable of working with – and shaping – the next generation of audio technology. You will also be ideally positioned to remain at the leading edge of audio engineering throughout your future career.

Portrait of Cristian Serban, MSc Audio Engineering graduate

I've loved the MSc in Audio Engineering. It's really helped me to build the next level skills that are required for a job in the industry. The content that the lecturers taught us was very professional, important and exciting.

Cristian Serban
MSc Audio Engineering graduate

Expertise to inspire you

You will be taught by experienced, research-active lecturers who boast an international profile in audio engineering and will support you to reach your full potential. They include Dr Adam Hill and Jon Burton, who have extensive experience as live sound engineers, and Dr Bruce Wiggins, who has a particular specialism in ambisonic surround sound systems.

The team’s research findings have been published and presented at international conferences, referenced in British Standards, and assimilated into World Health Organization initiatives, not to mention being put into place at large-scale live events such as Glastonbury Festival and Pitchfork Music Festival. One underwater acoustics project was even spotlighted on the BBC’s Blue Planet II.

Sounds In Space 2014 at Markeaton Street. This video is a brief glimpse of what went on, featuring a 20.2 + 5.1 surround rig, powered by the WigWare Ambisonic software, demos and talks.

Outstanding facilities

We have made a substantial investment in state-of-the-art facilities so that you can gain insights into the latest technology transforming the industry today.

You will have the opportunity to learn and conduct research in our hemi-anechoic chamber, two multi-channel sound rooms, a fully-equipped live event production space and a full suite of electronics labs.

Audio Engineering student with GRAS KEMAR head and torso
A student sat at a desk in our 3D multichannel room

A rich learning experience

Because we maintain close links with local, national and international industry, as well as the leading professional bodies, our teaching remains contemporary and relevant. We regularly invite representatives from industry to give guest lectures and masterclasses.

Our students also have the chance to hear from world-leading experts and expand their professional networks at the annual Reproduced Sound conference.

Your learning experience will be varied and vibrant. You will study as an individual but also have the chance to work as part of a group on integrated project work. This gives you insights into working within diverse teams to solve engineering problems. There is also plenty of opportunities, through independent study, to pursue projects which match your professional interests and career ambitions.

In 2022, leading loudspeaker company Meyer Sound partnered with the University of Derby to deliver online masterclasses and an in-person training course for our Entertainment Engineering students. As a student at Derby you'll have access to full-length seminars on topics such as acoustics, loudspeakers, audio networking, spatial sound and audio fundamentals, as well potential support with your research project.

Get a feel for what it's like to study Audio Engineering at the University of Derby

View Sound, Light and Live Event Technology at Derby video transcript

Student Hari Shaji

The MSc helped me to hone my audio software skills and improve my confidence in building applications for the real world. I'm glad to have participated in an award-winning plugin as a developer and I'm looking forward to contributing more to the industry.

Hari Shaji
MSc Audio Engineering student
Multi-Faith Centre, Kedleston Road

Postgraduate Open Event

Join us at an upcoming Postgraduate Open Event, where you will get the opportunity to meet our expert academics and find out more about your course.

Book your Postgraduate Open EventBook your Postgraduate Open Event

What you will study

This course is made up of three stages – Postgraduate Certificate, Postgraduate Diploma and MSc.

For the Postgraduate Certificate, you will study three modules from the list below. 

Audio Electronics

The process of converting an acoustic signal into an electrical signal, applying processing (using analogue and/or digital methodologies), amplifying the signal and then converting back into the acoustic domain is complicated, requiring a comprehensive knowledge and understanding of electroacoustics. This module concentrates on the analogue and digital electronics of the electroacoustic signal chain. The discussion revolves around audio power amplifier design and also considers essential signal chain components surrounding the amplifier such as crossover networks and equalisation systems. The module will provide you with an in-depth and comprehensive understanding of advanced audio electronics, allowing you to apply your knowledge to the design and implementation of a fully functional audio electronics device and to evaluate its performance.

Audio Innovation

The audio engineering industry is fuelled by innovation. The ability to stay ahead of the game often determines engineering successes and failures. This module is designed as a think-tank for all things audio, consisting largely of open discussions which give students the ability to develop innovative ideas alongside lecturers and invited speakers from industry. Emphasis is placed on innovative thinking, moving towards new and exciting solutions to long-standing engineering problems. Work carried out in this module focuses on a comprehensive understanding of a chosen cutting-edge research topic in audio engineering. You'll be assigned a research topic and will be responsible for leading a seminar discussion on the topic. This module is designed to develop your ability to stay on the leading edge of audio engineering research. You'll analyse and interpret current activity in academia and industry in order to develop ideas for future technological advancements.

Live Sound System Design and Optimisation

Live sound system design and optimisation is a multidisciplinary topic that can take the bulk of a career to master. This module covers the core science and engineering principles behind implementing a sound system that meets all design specifications. Large room acoustics, loudspeaker design, computer modelling techniques and a range of optimisation strategies are covered to build up a robust skillset that is valued by employers. This module culminates in a project focusing on the design, modelling and analysis of a sound system for real-world use.

Acoustics in Buildings

This module will review the factors governing the acoustic characteristics of enclosed spaces, and how these characteristics are described, predicted, measured and adjusted by design. The physical principles governing sound insulation provided by building structures will be reviewed and how this is predicted and assessed. The principles of electroacoustic system design for buildings is considered as well as the impact of building services on the acoustics of a room.

Environmental Noise Assessment

Environmental noise is continually increasing as the global population grows, resulting in an impact on health and the environment. This module will introduce the main sources of environmental noise, in particular those associated with transportation, industry, construction and entertainment noise. The module will explore indices and standards used to assess these sources, and will review the methods of control available.

Advanced Surround Sound Systems

Investigate, develop and analyse the science and engineering principles and theory of various surround systems applied at largescale live events. These include 3D cinema audio, broadcast, computer games audio and personal audio systems.

Audio Software Engineering

Prepare for an industry where music technology software is everywhere. You will focus on aspects of software engineering, usability, modular design and software life cycle, implementing real-time digital signal processing algorithms on digital audio.

Negotiated Module

Engage with a specific aspect of the technology used within your subject area at masters level. Through practical industry experience, you will combine elements of project management, target setting and implementation of objectives. 

You will study a further three modules from those listed under Postgraduate Certificate

Independent Engineering Scholarship

Apply and enhance the knowledge you have gained and develop your specialist skills in an area of your choice. 

Please note that our modules are subject to change - we review the content of our courses regularly, making changes where necessary to improve your experience and graduate prospects.

How you will learn

Our MSc programme has been developed in consultation with leading figures in the audio engineering industry. All teaching and learning exercises are focused on real-world applications. For some assignments, certain tasks require working with various individuals in the industry for guidance and mentorship.

Assessment involves a combination of coursework and examinations. Coursework entails individual and group assignments, all with a focus on real-world applications.

Who will teach you

Adam Hill sitting on some music equipment

Dr Adam Hill
Programme leader

Adam is an Associate Professor of Electroacoustics. He is programme leader on our MSc Audio Engineering. His research focuses on analysis, modelling, and wide-area spatiotemporal control of low-frequency sound reproduction and reinforcement.

View full staff profileView full staff profile

Entry requirements

You will require:

This programme is suitable for UK, EU and international applicants.

Fees and funding

2024/25 (August 2024 - July 2025)


£9,000 for the full course or £1,000 per 20 credits*

£1,000 per 20 credits


£14,900 for the full course


Please note fees normally increase in line with inflation and the University's strategic approach to fees, which is reviewed on an annual basis. The total fee you pay may therefore increase after one year of study.

* UK full-time fees paid within one academic year are rounded down to the nearest £50 if applicable

Additional costs and optional extras

About postgraduate awards

Please note at postgraduate level, you’ll need to gain the following number of credits in total to obtain the respective awards. If you have any questions please contact us.

Postgraduate Certificate60 Credits
Postgraduate Diploma120 Credits
MA or MSc180 Credits

This means you will gain 180 credits in total to complete the full MA or MSc. If you are studying part time you will normally complete your studies over two or three years, depending on the course structure.

Funding your studies

Find out more about fees, postgraduate loans and support you may be entitled to.

Find out about funding your studiesFind out about funding your studies

Alumni discount for Derby graduates

We offer a discount on postgraduate course fees for all Derby alumni.

Find out about the Alumni discountFind out about the Alumni discount

Students chatting to each other

International student scholarships

We have a range of scholarships and discounts available to international students which can be used together to offer a reduction in your tuition fees.

Find out if you're eligible for an international scholarship Find out if you're eligible for an international scholarship

How to apply

Please look at our application deadlines before you apply.


As a graduate of the MSc Audio Engineering, you will be ideally prepared to progress into rewarding careers within many fields of professional activity – or to advance an existing career if you are already employed.

You will find that high-calibre audio engineers are in demand in fields such as:

Our teaching team can give you advice on relevant employment opportunities and you will receive full support from the University’s Careers and Employment Service, who can assist in areas such as job application and interview techniques.

Contact us


If you need any more information from us, eg on courses, accommodation, applying, car parking, fees or funding, please contact us and we will do everything we can to help you.

Contact us Contact us

† Additional information about your studies

January 2024 intake is only available for home students

Download programme specification

Teaching hours

Like most universities, we operate extended teaching hours at the University of Derby, so contact time with your lecturers and tutors could be anytime between 9am and 9pm. Your timetable will usually be available on the website 24 hours after enrolment on to your course.

Additional costs and optional extras

We’re committed to providing you with an outstanding learning experience. Our expert teaching, excellent facilities and great employability prepare you for your future career. As part of our commitment to you we aim to keep any additional study costs to a minimum. However, there are occasions where students may incur some additional costs.

The information provided on this page is correct at the time of publication but course content, costs and other individual course details do change from time to time and are updated as often as possible, so please do check these pages again when making your final decision to apply for a course. Any updated course details will also be confirmed to you at application, enrolment and in your offer letter.

Included in your fees
Mandatory costs not included in your fees
Optional costs not included in your fees

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