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Columbia College Chicago
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About Us

Creating a sound world


Students, faculty, and staff of the Audio Arts & Acoustics Department study sound, the most omnipresent and evocative of sensations, and hearing, the most versatile and intuitive of senses.

We offer comprehensive undergraduate study, facilities, and expertise in
• live and recorded sound design, engineering, and production/post-production,
• environmental and architectural acoustics,
• hearing physiology/conservation and sound perception and cognition, and
• design and management of audio installations.

Upon successful completion of their program of study, Audio Arts & Acoustics students are able to demonstrate the knowledge, skills, and aesthetic awareness necessary to systematically and expertly control sound and sound structures, within the application context(s) of interest, in order to reliably translate a project's aesthetic intent into a listener's aesthetic experience.

Our faculty provides expertise in a variety of fields, exposing students to multiple perspectives on sound:
Physics – mechanics, acoustics, electronics, and the underlying basic mathematics
Physiology, Psychology, Aesthetics – perceptual, cognitive, and cultural bases of hearing, making sense of, and evaluating sound
Technology – the analog and digital resources used to capture, process, analyze, model, store, and distribute/transmit sound
Sound Art – the creative bases of artistic expression in sound

Our students engage in theoretical and practical studies that cover a variety of media, technologies, practices, and aesthetics:
• audio production/post-production for music, sound art, cinema, broadcast, and multimedia
• sound synthesis, signal processing, and sound art
• sound for live music, theater, dance, worship, and other cultural events
• sound system design for performance, civic, commercial, and recording spaces
• acoustical engineering for evaluation and design of physical or virtual spaces
• research on sound generation, perception, measurement, control, and acoustical design

A passion for sound has shaped our lives as artists, scientists, and professionals. As teachers, we focus our expertise and energy on student learning and development. To those who aspire to become experts in the art and science of sound, the Department of Audio Arts & Acoustics provides the knowledge, skills, intellectual space, and resources necessary to accomplish their goal.



As practitioners of sound arts and sciences, the faculty of the Audio Arts & Acoustics Department at Columbia College are committed to advancing the foundation, practice, and aesthetic criteria necessary to maintain and enhance our discipline as the principal medium of communication and personal expression.

We are committed to offering our students the tools and the opportunities to build, reinforce, and maintain the fundamental knowledge and skills that are required for a successful career in a technologically intensive environment.

We believe that we must nurture a strong liberal arts component as an integral part of our program. We are dedicated to offering our students every reasonable opportunity to express their creativity in a fashion compatible with and complimentary to the academic standards of our department.

We are committed to our program’s reputation among industry and other peer institutions; it is this commitment that drives our Department’s growth. Hence, we encourage dialogue between our program and the industry, and we foster the growth of interaction between our students and their peers.

We pledge to actively promote the Mission of Columbia College Chicago by engendering an educational climate where the value of social and cultural diversity is recognized.

AA&A logo

Website: http://www.colum.edu/aaa
Facebook: http://tinyurl.com/aaa-department
email: aaainfo@colum.edu
phone: 312-369-8820
fax: 312-369-8427
Student Handbook: http://tinyurl.com/aaa-student-handbook