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Audio Recording Schools in San Francisco

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Locations: All 50 US States, Canada, the UK, and Australia
Tuition: +/- $10,000 to graduate


The Recording Connection Audio Institute is a fully accredited school that trains students for a variety of careers in the recording industry. All training occurs on-location in real recording studios across the United States, Canada, Australia and the UK. Training is conducted one-on-one in the studio by actual recording engineers and music producers, combining course work with hands-on training and apprenticeship in the studio.

The basic Audio Engineering and Music Producing program (bachelor-equivalent) includes training Pro Tools, live tracking, microphone placement, overdubs, mixing and post-production. The program can be tailored according to the student’s strengths and interests, with concentrations in pop, rock, metal, hip-hop, electronic music production, beat-making, DJ, live sound and more. Graduates of the basic course may continue their education with the advanced master’s-equivalent program in Audio Engineering and Music Production.

Possible Career Outcomes:

  • Audio Engineer
  • Live Sound Engineer
  • Music Producer
  • Electronic Musician
  • DJ
  • Hip-Hop Producer
  • Beat Maker
  • App Developer
  • Music Business Executive
  • Recording Studio Owner
  • Film/TV/Game Soundtracks

Accessibility: 10 of 10

Affordability: 9 of 10

Course Variety: 8 of 10

Financial Aid

Yes, this school offers financial aid.

Job Placement Assistance

Yes, this school offers job placement assistance.

Locations: 50+ Locations in USA & Canada
Tuition: +/- $50,000 to graduate

School Website:


With 50 locations throughout the United States and Canada, The Art Institute is a well-recognized school that offers degrees and certificates in a variety of art and media related disciplines. Depending on location, the school currently offers two audio degree programs: an Audio Production Associate of Science for basic training, and an Audio Production Bachelor of Science Program those desiring a more comprehensive education. Both courses have English, Mathematics and Social and Behavioral Sciences requirements in addition to the audio core curriculum requirements.

Both audio production programs feature lessons in audio recording, live sound reproduction, audio for video, and broadcast production. Students learn to record, mix, and produce audio in analog and digital formats. Graduates are prepared for entry-level employment as audio engineers, radio producers, assistant sound technicians, or sound engineers.

Possible Career Outcomes:

  • Audio Engineer
  • Assistant Sound Technician
  • Board Operator
  • Radio Producer

Accessibility: 7 of 10

Affordability: 5 of 10

Course Variety: 3 of 10

Financial Aid

Yes, this school offers financial aid.

Job Placement Assistance

No, this school does not offer job placement assistance.

Locations: Los Angeles & Sacramento, California
Tuition: +/- $30,000 to graduate


Originally founded as Sound Master in 1972, Pinnacle College now offers a variety of music industry training programs from its two campuses in Los Angeles and Sacramento. The school offers an 18-month associate’s degree in Music Production Recording Arts, plus certificate programs in Video Game Sound Design and Recording Engineering. Individual Pro Tools certification courses are also offered.

Pinnacle College offers both day and evening classes, with numerous start times for each program throughout the year. Courses may include Music Theory, Music Production, Digital Audio Workstations, Sound Design Concepts, Live Sound, Business Theory and more.

Possible Career Outcomes:

  • Audio Engineer
  • Music Producer
  • Sound Designer
  • Live Sound Engineer

Accessibility: 2 of 10

Affordability: 6 of 10

Course Variety: 5 of 10

Financial Aid

Yes, this school offers financial aid.

Job Placement Assistance

No, this school does not offer job placement assistance.

Locations: San Jose & Emeryville, California
Tuition: +/- $40,000 to graduate

School Website:


With two campuses in the Bay Area of California, Ex’pression College is an accredited school offering Bachelor of Applied Science degrees in six different media-related majors: Digital Filmmaking, Game Art and Design, Motion Graphic Design, Animation and Visual Effects, Sound Arts, and Interactive Audio. Bachelor’s degrees can be earned in about three years through the school’s accelerated curriculum, with degree programs beginning at various times throughout the year.

Recording students will take particular interest in two of the degree programs: Sound Arts and Interactive Audio. The first focuses on the basics of audio production, recording, mixing and post production, while the second also concentrates on interactive applications such as mobile devices, game audio, multimedia, etc. Both programs include courses in music theory, audio recording, computer music production, media/sound/visual, and general education courses.

Possible Career Outcomes:

  • Audio Engineer
  • Music Producer
  • Sound Designer
  • Live Sound Engineer
  • Multimedia Specialist

Accessibility: 2 of 10

Affordability: 6 of 10

Course Variety: 10 of 10

Financial Aid

Yes, this school offers financial aid.

Job Placement Assistance

No, this school does not offer job placement assistance.

Locations: 50+ Campuses Worldwide
Tuition: +/- $44,000 to graduate

School Website:


First established in Australia in 1979 as School of Audio Engineering by producer/engineer Tom Misner, SAE Institute has since grown to encompass over 50 locations worldwide, including U.S. locations in Miami, New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Atlanta, Nashville and San Francisco. In the U.S., the school offers a variety of diploma programs with an emphasis mostly on audio production, with a one-year associate’s degree in Audio Technology offered at the Atlanta campus only.

Specific course offerings vary by location, but the following programs are currently available at various U.S. campuses: Audio Technology, Electronic Music Production, Beat Lab Production, Music Business, Digital Journalism and iPhone App Development. International locations offer expanded course offerings such as Web Development, Video Game Development and Filmmaking, with bachelor’s and master’s degrees also available at certain overseas campuses.

Possible Career Outcomes:

  • Audio Engineer
  • Electronic Musician
  • Beat Maker
  • App Developer
  • Music Business Executive

Accessibility: 8 of 10

Affordability: 7 of 10

Course Variety: 9 of 10

Financial Aid

Yes, this school offers financial aid.

Job Placement Assistance (limited)

This school offers limited job placement assistance.