Course Title: Record sound

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term2 2013

Course Code: VART6073C

Course Title: Record sound

School: 345T Media and Communication

Campus: City Campus

Program: C4276 - Certificate IV in Sound Production

Course Contact : program Administration

Course Contact Phone: 03 9925 4815

Course Contact

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Tim Johnston
Phone: 03 9925 4325

Nominal Hours: 60

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

This unit describes the performance outcomes, skills and knowledge required to record sound, including the supervision of sound-recording operations.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

CUSSOU401A Record sound


1Prepare for sound recording

Performance Criteria:

1.1Clarify recording requirements with reference to production documentation and in consultation with relevant personnel

1.2Prepare a team work plan as required and brief personnel accordingly

1.3Check that sound equipment and accessories are in working order for recording sessions

1.4Ensure that sound equipment and accessories are set up, connected and aligned according to safety, technical and production requirements

1.5Ensure that the selection of sound equipment and accessories meets required standards

1.6Ensure that recording devices have sufficient capacity for expected duration of recordings

1.7Anticipate problems that may arise during the recording process and plan accordingly

1.8Ensure adequate supply of consumables is available for duration of sound recordings


2Place microphones and test record line-up

Performance Criteria:

2.1Select, power and position microphones and microphone accessories according to safety, technical and production requirements

2.2Apply principles of microphone operation when placing and moving microphones

2.3Ensure placement of microphones and microphone accessories is safe, unobtrusive and avoids extraneous and unwanted noise

2.4Conduct a sound check to ensure quality of recording will meet required standards

2.5Test signal flow of connected sound equipment and accessories


3Make sound recordings

Performance Criteria:

3.1Ensure run-up time is sufficient to allow stable sound recording

3.2Apply appropriate signal processing for optimal sound quality and make test recordings to ensure no audible defects are present

3.3Continuously monitor sound recording for quality, audible defects and extraneous background sound

3.4Critically listen to recording and provide feedback on appropriate recording techniques to record line-up

3.5Ensure recorded sound supports and enhances production requirements

3.6Complete recording sessions in line with production timelines


4Finalise sound-recording operations

Performance Criteria:

4.1Ensure that recordings are saved in the appropriate format and logged/filed in line with organisational procedures

4.2Make safety copies or backups as required

4.3Prepare accurate production set-up reports

4.4Ensure that sound equipment and accessories are
de-rigged, checked and cleaned appropriately

4.5Ensure that work environments are cleaned after use
and restored to their pre-recording condition

4.6Provide feedback to other team members as required

4.7Evaluate own performance against technical and creative
criteria and note areas for improvement

Learning Outcomes

Achieve the skills and knowledge required to record sound, including the supervision of sound-recording operations.

Details of Learning Activities

In class activities may include:
• lectures
• peer teaching and class presentations
• group discussion
• online research
• independent project based work
• teacher directed group activities/projects

Out of class activities may include:
• online research
• independent project based work

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.

Class content Elements 
1 Physics of Sound
Course overview
What is sound, sound wave propagation, Wavelength, Frequency, Phase, Envelope, Velocity. 1,2


The ear
Pinna, auditory canal, tympanic membrane, Basilar membrane.
Reflection & diffraction of sound
3 Decibels & SPL
Application of basic formulae
Amplitude, Sound Levels, and Decibels
Inverse Square Law
Sound Intensity, SPL
4 Decibels & Hearing
Threshold of Hearing
Threshold of Feeling
Threshold of Pain
Equal Loudness contours.
5 Reverberation
Early reflections & Echoes
Pre delay & RT60
Intelligibility of rooms & idealised reverb times.
Sabine’s formula
6 Acoustics Theory
Standing Waves/ Eigentones/ Room modes
Room mode calculations. Axial, tangential, oblique
7 Acoustics Theory
Introduction to Building Acoustics
Membrane Absorbers, Porous Absorbers, Diffusers.
8 Design & Building Acoustics
Noise criteria and Transmission Loss.
Room Acoustics and design requirements.
9 Practical session for Assignment & Revision 1
10 Written Test 1
11 - 15 Practical Assignment – Recording in studio 1,2,3,4

Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts

"Modern Recording Techniques" (7th Edition), Huber and Runstein, Focal Press. 0240810694


You are advised to look at the course Blackboard site for ongoing updated information. Students are expected to make full use of the Library facilities.

Other Resources

Overview of Assessment

Course assessment tasks will include class based practical exercises and project work undertaken in the computer lab for submission.

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. Summative assessment tasks in this unit are graded.

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

To demonstrate competency in this course, you need to complete each one of the following pieces of assessment to a satisfactory standard.

Formative Assessment:

1. Application of appropriate formulae/calculations – Class 1-10

2. Organise and coordinate personnel for recording – Class 12-16

3. Plan and itemise equipment and signal chain to be used in the recording – Class 12-16

4. Select and place microphones based on principles of microphone operation. – Class 1-14

5. Implement appropriate dynamic processing - Class 1-20

6. Monitor and control stereo image and depth; - Class 1-20

7. Apply appropriate use of effects processing - Class 1-20

8. Deliver appropriate output level of pre master final mix - Class 1-20

Summative Assessment:


- Written multiple choice and short answer theory paper;- Class 10

- Research, analyse, calculate and submit findings on acoustic properties of a recording environment- Class 14

- Submit portfolio with presentation and labeling to industry standard – Class 18-20


The details on these assessments and the grading criteria for this competency can be found on 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 Competency Achieved - Graded
NYC Not Yet Competent
DNS Did Not Submit for Assessment

Assessment Matrix

Other Information

Assessment of this unit is integrated with the assessments for the following units:

VART 6071C Operate Professional Audio Equipment

VART 6075C Mix Recorded Music


Classes 11 - 15 of this unt will be based around supervised group studio recordings

VART 6075C Mix Recorded Music will then include a further 5 recording studio sessions

Course Overview: Access Course Overview