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Why study at Riverside Music College?

Our HND Sound Production course is delivered over 2 years and on successful completion our students leave not only with a HND Certificate, but also a professional industry ready portfolio and a unique insight into the modern sound production industries.

Our HND framework prepares our candidates for a career across many modern disciplines with the opportunity to specialise in a particular area of interest, enabling them to have a focussed and relevant set of skills befitting of an industry professional.

Some examples of career paths our students can focus on include:

  • Sound Engineer (music, broadcast, new media, live sound, conference)
  • Sound Designer (multimedia, TV, Film, Games)
  • Programmer (In the context of music production)
  • Audio Technician (broadcast, studio, conference and events)

Our students and staff are held in high regard by Universities and employers alike and we always aim to deliver the best possible and most relevant learning experience, utilising our state of the art equipment and facilities.

Our Sound Production courses with articulation to years 3 and 4 of BSc Audio Engineering are designed to help you realise your potential in your chosen industry pathway.

The Audio Engineering course focuses on primary areas such as fundamentals of studio and live music production, audio systems integration, software and programming skills and approaches to answering professional briefs. 

During your studies you will undertake hands-on learning in our high-tech facilities with direct access to cutting-edge equipment and software. Our lecturers are top-class industry professionals and will provide direction and support to help you understand the nature of the creative process. You will also benefit from insight into their experiences and work ethic, helping you to contextualise your learning activities.

You will learn the fundamentals required to work with artists, developing the full potential of their compositional skills and how to optimise their performances. 

The course will equip you with everything you need to bring your technical knowledge and creativity to live and studio settings, recording music and sounds in a variety of styles that provide the necessary skills to pursue a career in a range of music industry roles.

At Riverside Music College, you Choose Your Own Path! The course option you choose will help you to focus your studies and create the career pathway that’s right for you.

HND Year 1 - Course Content

Unit Specification

Designed to develop practical skills and knowledge and understanding of Sound Production theory and practice preparing students for future use of technology and techniques.

Taught in a hybrid analogue/digital environment, across both Studio 1 and Studio 2, students will develop an understanding of how sound behaves in a range of environments and will be able to connect and test audio systems before recording and reproducing a range of sources.


Unit Specification

Designed to give students an understanding of recording and manipulating audio and MIDI signals for Sound Production using digital audio workstations. Taught using Ableton Live, this unit provides students with the underpinning knowledge and skills required to use the main functions of a digital audio workstation, and to take a sound production project to a conclusion by creating an edited pre-production master, incorporating critical listening.

Unit Specification

The purpose of this unit is to develop skills and knowledge relating to the use of sound reinforcement equipment used at live events (music, vocal, audio visual events etc.)


Unit Specification

The purpose of this unit is to familiarise students with the principles and practice of multi-track recording and mixing, allowing the learner to develop skills in a typical studio environment in response to a client brief.

GET INDUSTRY READY -  Working in tandem with our Music Performance students in studio 2, using Pro Tools to record and produce high quality multi-track recordings and mix downs, students will develop an understanding of the processes involved in recording and mixing multi-track sessions, whilst effectively working with clients. The unit is designed for students who wish to develop the skills and knowledge required to work in a recording studio environment within the Sound Production field.

Unit Specification

Giving students a broad understanding of copyright, collection societies and contract agreements related to the field of Sound Production, this unit also enables students to become familiar with a spreadsheet application to manage the administration of basic financial information, and develop resources in preparation for employment and an interview. Students will have the opportunity to create a budget for a small production project.


Unit Specification

The graded unit is designed to provide evidence that the student has achieved the following principal aims of HND Sound Production (Year 1):

  • An ability to analyse and synthesise knowledge and skills acquired through study.
  • An ability to develop study, organisational and research skills.
  • An ability to integrate sound production skills in practical and/or employability contexts.
  • To enable progression to further study in sound production or a related discipline.
  • An ability to develop personal skills and follow evolving industry practices


his Unit is designed to enable candidates to undertake practical recording out with normal audio recording environments as well as understand the associated problems.

This unit is designed to give learners the opportunity to design, connect and test an audio system in response to a brief. The learner will be presented with a brief or briefs to design an audio system for a specific application and will use problem solving approaches to demonstrate the practical application of knowledge and skills in selecting compatible equipment and interconnection protocols to achieve effective system integration and operation. The learner will demonstrate practical application of appropriate health and safety issues through the design, connection and operation processes.

The Creative Project is designed to enable candidates to develop expertise in the generation, development, completion and presentation of a project to a given brief, for an elected vocational area of the creative industries. This project acts as a ‘showcase’ to display skills and knowledge being acquired throughout the group award.

The purpose of this unit is to allow learners to operate within the role and function of the producer within the recording process. One aim is to develop awareness of the differences between the role of engineer and producer in the recording studio. The unit should enable learners to identify different production techniques with regard to musical style, instrumentation and arrangement, as well as commercial demands.

HND Year 2 - Course Content

This unit is designed to give learners a complex level of understanding of digital audio workstation operation. It will allow learners to develop skills in complex audio and MIDI editing and processing. The unit will enable the learners to develop the knowledge and skills to take complex projects to conclusion by creating automated mix-downs and output those to a variety of formats in accordance with recommended industry standards. Learners will then evaluate the finished products, demonstrating an ability to critically listen to their completed mix-downs.

This unit will give learners an opportunity to plan, develop and implement a market facing sound production project based upon a genuine or simulated opportunity. Learners will conduct market analysis before developing a brief and seeing it through to completion. There will be opportunities for learners to draw on practical sound production experience as well as relevant business and industry skills in the development of the project.

This unit will give learners the opportunity to demonstrate an understanding of mastering and final format production across a range of consumer formats and destinations. The learner will acquire and apply skills and knowledge of processes required for mastering new and archive audio programme material. Learners will demonstrate practical ability in this field by responding to a brief to produce and evaluate multiple programme audio masters for a range of consumer formats and destinations.

This unit is designed to give learners a clear knowledge and advanced understanding of spatial recording and reproduction techniques. It will prepare them to undertake complex recording tasks, from a brief. It will provide them with the practical skills involved in spatial microphone techniques, recording and accurate replay of audio sources.

This graded unit is designed to provide evidence that the learner has achieved the following principal aims of the HND Sound Production:

  • an ability to analyse and synthesise knowledge and skills acquired through study

  • an ability to develop study, organisational and research skills

  • an ability to integrate sound production skills in practical and/or employability contexts

  • to enable progression to further study in sound production or a related discipline

  • an ability to develop personal skills and follow evolving industry practice

  • an ability to develop proficiency in the creative use of sound production technology and applications

  • an ability to develop critical analysis; to reflect on own practice

  • to enable the adoption of innovative practices and creativity in work and ability to respond quickly to the challenges posed by changes in the audio industry

The purpose of this unit is to extend and develop the experience of learners who have completed the HN unit Sound Production: Sound for Live Events (SCQF level 7). Learners will develop a wider knowledge of sound reinforcement technologies whilst extending their system set-up and test techniques. The unit is also designed to develop learners’ awareness of the variety of sound reinforcement technologies currently available and how to apply the correct techniques necessary for high-power amplification to a variety of sound sources. Learners will also develop rigorous techniques for system equalisation.

This unit is designed to enable learners to develop their understanding of, and to demonstrate their practical ability in planning and undertaking an independent multi-track recording and mixing project, working to a client brief. It provides learners with the knowledge and skills to plan and conduct a multi-track recording session and to complete an automated mix-down, both within agreed time constraints. It is primarily intended to enhance skills developed in other areas of sound capture, processing, mix-down and editing. It is also intended to enhance a learner’s ability to work effectively with clients and manage recording and mixing sessions effectively and efficiently.

This unit will give learners the opportunity to gain a broad knowledge of the building blocks of music theory. The unit is aimed at HN Sound Production students who will benefit from knowledge of a broad range of music theory elements, particularly when working within a Digital Audio Workstation (DAW). Learners will gain the knowledge and skills necessary to identify and apply ranges of note pitches and durations, work with basic musical scales in a range of keys, and work with basic chord progressions.

Riverside offers flexible payment options for students wishing to pay fees via our SAAS and non-SAAS funded instalment plans. Eligible students can also apply for living cost support via SAAS, who have a combination of loans, grants and bursaries available. Student loans of up to £6,750.00 and bursaries of £2,000.00 are available depending on individual circumstances. For further details please check the SAAS website. Read More

Entry Requirements

Minimum of one Higher (band C or above), PLUS passes in two other subjects at NAT 5 or equivalent. 

Don't meet the entry requirements? No problem, check out our Access to HND courses!


2 Years (HNC can be obtained after one academic year) August - June (full time)


RMCplus+, our Extracurricular Project Development Programme, is a unique opportunity for our students to build a working CV and high quality practical portfolio, preparing them to confidently take the next steps in their chosen career or further studies.

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