Course Title: Record sound on location

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term1 2013

Course Code: VART6211C

Course Title: Record sound on location

School: 345T Media and Communication

Campus: City Campus

Program: C4295 - Certificate IV in Screen and Media

Course Contact : Program Administration

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925 4815

Course Contact

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Dave Hannan



Nominal Hours: 35

Regardless of the mode of delivery, represent a guide to the relative teaching time and student effort required to successfully achieve a particular competency/module. This may include not only scheduled classes or workplace visits but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.

Pre-requisites and Co-requisites


Course Description

Sound recordists and boom operators apply the skills and knowledge described in this unit. They are responsible for recording sound effects and location atmosphere. They are also responsible for using boom mounted microphones and radio microphones to record dialogue in both outdoor and indoor locations. The operation of the boom requires precision and physical stamina to ensure that the optimum quality sound is captured without interfering with camera operation or the movement of actors. Well-developed understanding of how sound is used in screen productions is essential, along with the ability to work cooperatively and sensitively with performers and other production crew members.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

CUSSOU406A Record sound on location


1. Prepare for location recording

Performance Criteria:

1.1 Confirm recording requirements in consultation with relevant personnel and with reference to scripts and other production documentation
1.2 Check that sound equipment and accessories are in working order prior to shoots
1.3 Ensure adequate supply of consumables is available for duration of sound recordings


2. Capture dialogue

Performance Criteria:

2.1 Participate in technical run-throughs or rehearsals to determine optimum positioning of boom and microphone for recording shots
2.2 Rig sound equipment and accessories in line with safety, technical and production requirements
2.3 Attach radio or clip microphones to actors' clothing as required
2.4 Ensure run-up time is sufficient and synchronisation codes are referenced to allow stable sound recording
2.5 Move boom according to scripted shots and respond to direction
2.6 Follow the actions and anticipate movements of relevant personnel
2.7 Ensure movement of boom is unobtrusive and sympathetic to actions of relevant personnel and does not generate unwanted noise
2.8 Monitor sound through headphones to ensure unwanted sounds are not being captured
2.9 Communicate with relevant personnel with minimal disruption to operations
2.10 Correct equipment failures with minimal disruption to operations


3. Capture sound effects

Performance Criteria:

3.1 Record background location sound for use in post-production
3.2 Place multiple microphones in different positions to capture sound perspective of effects being recorded
3.3 Listen critically to recorded sound and re-record as required to achieve desired effect


4. Finalise sound-recording operations

Performance Criteria:

4.1 Save recordings in the appropriate format and log/file in line with organisational procedures
4.2 Make safety copies or backups in line with organisational procedures
4.3 De-rig, check and clean sound equipment and accessories
4.4 Leave locations clean and restored to their pre-recording condition
4.5 Evaluate own performance against technical and creative criteria and note areas for improvement

Learning Outcomes

In this course you will undertake the recording of sound on location, from preparation to final sound recordings.

Details of Learning Activities

In class activities will include a range of teacher directed group activities/projects class exercises to review discussions/lectures independent project based work online research group discussion
Out-of-class activities include completion of individual design and pre-production work, preparation for class presentations and location excursions.

Teaching Schedule

Please note: While your teacher will cover all the material in this schedule, the weekly order is subject to change depending on class needs and availability of speakers and resources.


WeekClass contentAssessmentElements
1 History of broadcasting technology, introduction to ENG sound recording equipment
2 Microphone selection and implementation for broadcast
3 Sound mixing techniques for broadcast
4 Location and studio dialogue and sfx sound recording techniques.
5 Microphones, Location and studio sound recording
 Formative # 1
6 Studio sound production 1 - Newsline
7 Studio sound production 2 - Newsline  2,3,4
8 Studio sound production 3 - Newsline Summative # 2

Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts


Other Resources

It is recommended that you bring materials to classes to make notes, for example;
a pen and notepaper
a laptop computer

Overview of Assessment

Practical demonstration of location and studio based recording techniques.

Assessment Tasks

Assessment tasks in this course are either formative or summative. Formative tasks provide the basis for ongoing feedback and can be considered as essential building blocks for the more substantial summative assessment tasks.

To demonstrate competency in this course, you will need to complete each one of the following pieces of assessment to a satisfactory standard. You will receive feedback on all assessments and a grade for the summative assessment.

Formative Assessment
1. Practical demonstration of location/studio recording techniques at week 5.

Summative Assessment
2. Practical demonstration of location/studio recording techniques in conjunction with ’Newsline’ productions in week 8.

For further information on the assessments and grading criteria, please refer to the course Blackboard site.

Grades used in this unit are as follows:

CHD    Competent with High Distinction
CDI     Competent with Distinction
CC     Competent with Credit
CAG    Competence achieved - graded
NYC     Not Yet Competent
DNS     Did Not Submit for Assessment

Assessment Matrix

The assessment matrix demonstrates alignment of assessment tasks with the relevant Unit of Competency. These are available through the course contact in Program administration

Other Information

The major learning experience involves studio based exercises, demonstration and production. It is strongly advised that students attend all sessions in order to engage in the required learning activities, ensuring the maximum opportunity to gain the competency.

Cover Sheet for Submissions
All students must complete a submission cover sheet for each piece of submitted work.

Plagiarism - RMIT has a strict policy on plagiarism. For more information on this policy go to Academic Integrity

All students have access to the myRMIT copyright shell. The myRMIT copyright shell contains information on copyright, plus also examples on how to use copyright works as part of your projects and assignments.

Special consideration Policy (Late Submission)
All assessment tasks are required to be completed to a satisfactory level. If you are unable to complete any piece of assessment by the due date, you will need to apply for an extension. Please refer to the following URL for extensions and special consideration:

Student Progress Committee
This committee promotes the early identification of students who are not achieving acceptable academic performance. The committee provides identified students with assistance and seeks to ensure such students are aware of the range of support services available to them at the University. Student Progress Committee (SPC)

Student Feedback
Students are offered opportunities to provide feedback through a variety of mechanisms including online surveys conducted at the end of each course or semester, student complaints and Student Staff Consultative Committees


Course Overview: Access Course Overview