Bachelor of Audio Production - Invercargill

Qualification: Degree
Level: 7

2021 Semester 1: 15 February to 12 November


Three years full-time

Location: Invercargill
Credits: 360

SIT's Bachelor of Audio Production is the most established audio production degree in Australasia. Graduates have the professional technical skills to succeed in the industry and the programme offers unparalleled opportunities for hands-on learning, including an internship for third year students for 12 weeks at the School of Audio Engineering’s Byron Bay campus in Australia.

Areas of study include: sound, microphones, studio recording, live set-ups, film sound, TV sound, radio sound, sound acoustics, electronics and audiology.

SIT has well over a million dollars worth of audio equipment, including an SSL AWS 900SE+ console, industry-standard microphones (including Neumann, AKG, Sennheiser, Shure, Rode, Audio-technica), Avid D-Command ES (Post production surround mixing console for home theatre, film, or music), Toft ATB24 analogue recording console, Mackie 32-8 analogue console, Yamaha 01V 96 digital console, ProTools in every studio, and a Mac lab.

We have five purpose-built recording studios and a large recording auditorium (which can fit a full orchestra/brass band) plus a 300 seat performance auditorium with JBL VRX series 3-way front of house monitors, QSC power amps, 6 RCF powered foldbacks, Allen & Heath GL2400 analogue and Presonus digital front of house mixing consoles, foldback mixing console, in-ear monitoring, signal processing - Lexicon, DBX, and Shure microphones.

SIT also offers students the opportunity to complete a double degree in the Bachelor of Audio Production and the Bachelor of Contemporary Music after four years' full-time study. Graduates from this pathway of study will be well rounded musicians and sound engineers. They will be well versed in high quality studio recording and live sound work as well as having skills to pursue a career as a performer, composer or specialised instrumental teacher.

Year One

AUD501 Acoustics 1
Students will be introduced to the fundamentals of the science of sound. The nature of sound is explored, both theoretically and practically, providing an understanding of the audio process. The sonic theories of binaural localisation and psychoacoustics of sound gives a necessary platform from which all further sound mixes, and decisions, will benefit.

AUD502 Applied Audio Engineering 1
This paper is intended to address the principles of audio engineering equipment through the practical knowledge and application of audio engineering tools at an operational level. The development should bring operational competence on each audio device.

AUD503 Applied Audio Production 1
The paper prepares students in the use of recording and production techniques use to operate a recording studio correctly and safely, recording modest sized groups in a professional manner.

AUD504 Information Technology and Audio Software
This paper prepares students in the use of a personal computer as a tool for audio engineering and music production. Through an in-depth knowledge of the computer architecture required for this production task, students will develop skills in fundamental computing for digital audio workstation design, installation and operation. The required desktop publishing skills necessary for academic publications, presentations and multimedia file integration required for successful study are integrated through audio industry relevant topics and projects.

AUD505 Music Theory and Technology 1
Music technology involves any device used in the creation of music. Audio technicians and producers work for a significant part of their time with music tracks. This paper develops both rudimentary music theory and musical instrument performance skills for audio producers and musicians ensuring an acceptable understanding when dealing with the music industry conventions. As important as it is for sound engineers to follow a musical score, especially when recording instrumentalists as in the case of classical music, subsequently the pursuit of music contextual history and style analysis from classical to popular music periods are necessary elements to inform recording engineering and production processes.

These music theory, instrument and style analysis skills are combined within a compositional framework to produce complex recorded and electronic musical works.

AUD506 Audio Electronics 1
Many components of audio engineering and production is fundamentally based on creating music with electronic interconnections and instruments. As well as electrical and electromagnetic theory, audio electronics includes the ability to maintain audio cables and equipment and instrument, implement reasonable repairs, and rudimentary circuit construction for audio engineering and production requirements.

CON501 Contextual Studies 1
The student will develop knowledge and skills in academic writing and presenting in the context of music and audio creative arts. The students will develop this knowledge and these skills by examining historical, technological influences and developments in popular music in socio-cultural contexts. This paper leads onto Contextual Studies 2.

MAI501 Music and Audio Industry Studies
Students will be introduced to the music, audio and related industries internationally and in New Zealand. This paper will examine different roles and how they function within the industries (locally, nationally, and internationally). Students will gain an awareness of the supporting societies and organisations within these industries in New Zealand. Students will learn the basic principles of small business management and self-employment skills pertinent to practitioners in the music and audio industry, along with relevant marketing and promotional skills.


Year Two

Semester 1

BAP215 Audio Equipment
Addresses the critical use of all manner of sound engineering tools, with professional choices made in the application of each device.

BAP235 Information Technology
Addresses the use of computers in advanced audio situations, multi-media situations, and internet, music and audio services promotion.

BAP230 Industry Studies
Many major audio industry sectors are discussed in depth in this paper, which should become the central focus of study in the second year.

GEN200 Research and Statistics
Prepares students for professional practice by presenting research as a uniting strategy for practice, theory and scholarship.  Students will be introduced to several approaches to research, both qualitative and quantitative.  Students will also be assisted to develop skills as a beginning researcher.

Semester 2

BAP200 Acoustics
Room acoustics and sound proofing/correcting, as it relates to studio recording and music venue locations, are addressed in this paper, both theoretically and practically.

BAP220 Business Studies
Small business management is essential for anyone intending to, or finding themselves, running their own enterprise.

BAP225 Electronics
Active electronic circuit construction, and common fault finding, are the accents of this paper. 240 volt instruction should ensure that students can operate safely with mains electricity.

BAP245 Music Technology
Creative skills are to be developed in an industry that is extremely reliant on creativity in production. Musical and aural skills are further advanced here.

Year Three


BAP330 Industry Applications
The diverse range of industry applications within the audio field has a common thread of sound reinforcement technology throughout. The ability to convey knowledge, implement, manage and operate these technologies in the public arena, for various applications, is a vital skill for audio professionals.  An overview of the lighting profession is essential at this stage, as many live sound operators are being asked to supply basic lighting along with their hire-sound services.

BAP350 Professional Studies
Public speaking skills and a high level of communication skills are required for success in the audio industry. Along with acute hearing skills, students will develop professional practices appropriate to the industry.

BAP355 Specialist Audio
Specialist audio is a paper that offers students the opportunity to specialise in two areas of choice, all involving advanced and/or investigative applications within a wider audio field.  Other areas will be added in time, to reflect new developments and refinements within the broad field of audio, and staff research interests.

BAP365 Major Project
This paper offers a chance for third year students to be involved in a major project.  This will take the form of either a portfolio of recordings with written analysis and reflections, or a research project.


BAP300 Applied Acoustics

BCM370 Music Education Studies 3

This programme is eligible for the Zero Fees Scheme.

  • NO tuition fees
  • Direct material costs of $543 (Y1), $4483 (Y2) & $6077 (Y3), over three years you will pay around $11,103.00 (GST inclusive) (this includes the cost of a 12-week internship at SAE, Byron Bay, Australia!)
  • Saving you a massive $18,786* - all while gaining a high quality education and internationally recognised degree.

International Fees can be found here.

(*Prices above are estimated over 3 years of study, based on 2019 costs.)

Graduates will be skilled in high quality studio recording and live sound work.  They will have skills in business management and career options include: audio work in radio, television, film or the theatre. Further options include acoustic consulting, sound system installation, DJ work, record production, music publishing or work in a record company. Specialist audio training provides our graduates with the ability to work in more specialist fields.  Graduates from this programme may also choose to enter the audio education industry.

School Leavers

University Entrance - NCEA Level 3 

  • Three subjects – at Level 3, made up of 14 credits each, in three NZQA University Entrance approved subjects, and
  • Literacy – 10 credits at Level 2 or above, made up of five credits in reading and five credits in writing, and
  • Numeracy – 10 credits at Level 1 or above, made up of specified achievement standards through a range of subjects, or package of three numeracy unit standards (26623, 26626, 26627 – all three required)

Mature Applicants
Mature entry applicants will be the age of 20 by March 1 of the first year of enrolment in the programme, and have provided evidence of relevant prior learning and experience.

However, in exceptional circumstances, an applicant below the age of 20 who can show evidence of ability to succeed in the programme may be considered for admission, provided the applicant has successfully completed an approved course or programme which is deemed to prepare graduates for the required academic standard for entry e.g. Certificate in Audio Production.

Completion of an external or overseas qualification which is considered to be the equivalent of any of the above qualifications, will also be considered subject to approval by the head of faculty.

Special Admission

An applicant who does not meet academic criteria may be provisionally admitted to enrol in one or more Year One papers, provided he or she meets the requirements above. Upon successful completion of the papers, the student may apply for special admission or admission by mature entry.

Additional Criteria

Applicants are required to provide two confidential references from people who are able to affirm that the applicant is of good character and reputation.

English Language Requirements

Applicants, whose first language is not English, or who come from a country where the language of instruction in schools is not English, are required to provide evidence of having achieved one of the following

NCEA Level 3 with University Entrance, or

an International Baccalaureate Diploma or Cambridge A- level qualification for which the teaching and assessment was conducted in English; or

Cambridge Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (CELTA),or Trinity College London Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (CertTESOL);or

Successful completion of all primary education (being the equivalent of New Zealand primary school years 1 to 8) and at least three years of secondary education (being the equivalent of three years from New Zealand secondary school years 9 to 13) at schools in either New Zealand,,Australia,Canada, the Republic of Ireland, South Africa, the United Kingdom and the United States one of the countries listed in Rule 18.5 where the student was taught using English as the language of instruction; or

Successful completion of at least five years of secondary education (being the equivalent of New Zealand secondary school years 9 to 13) at schools in either New Zealand, Australia, Canada, the Republic of Ireland, South Africa, the United Kingdom and the United States where the student was taught using English as the language of instruction; or

Successful completion of a Bachelor's Degree, Graduate Certificate, Graduate Diploma, Bachelor Honours degree, Postgraduate Certificate, Postgraduate Diploma, Masters' Degree or Doctoral Degree, the language of instruction of which must be in English and which must be from a tertiary education provider from New Zealand, Australia, Canada, the Republic of Ireland, South Africa, the United Kingdom or the United States or

Successful completion of one of the following internationally recognised proficiency tests listed below to the level required of the programme of study and with all scores achieved in a single test during the two years preceding the proposed date of enrolment

IELTS test - Academic score of 6 with no band score lower than 5.5
TOEFL Paper based test (pBT) - Score of 550 (with an essay score 5 TWE)
TOEFL Internet based test (iBT) - Score of 60 (with a writing score of 18)
Cambridge English Examination - B2 First or B2 First for schools or C1 Advanced or C2 Proficiency with a score of 169. No less than 162 in each skill.
OET - Minimum of Grade C or 200 in all sub-tests
NZCEL - a) Expiring Level b) Current: a) Level 4 (Academic) b) Level 4 (Academic)
Pearson Test of English (Academic) - PTE (Academic) score of 50 with no band score lower than 42
Language Cert - C1 Expert IESOL (LRWS) with PASS and no less than Pass in each skill
Trinity ISE - ISE II with no less than distinction in any band

* New versions of some NZCEL qualifications, and in some cases new qualifications, were published on 13 June 2017. These are intended to replace pre-existing versions and qualifications, which have been given expiring status until discontinued on 31 December 2019. (a) denotes expiring (b) denotes current

In order to be awarded the Bachelor of Audio Production, the student will have been credited with all required papers, including the research project, as specified in the degree schedule. The student completing the Bachelor of Audio Production will normally be expected to complete the three year programme (full time equivalent) within five years.

The Head of Faculty with the approval and recommendation of the Board of Studies, may allow a student a longer period to complete the programme.

SIT also offers students the opportunity to complete a double degree in the Bachelor of Audio Production and the Bachelor of Contemporary Music after four years full time study. Graduates from this pathway of study will be well rounded musicians and sound engineers, well versed in high quality studio recording and live sound work as well as having skills to pursue a career as a performer, composer or specialised instrumental teacher.

Classes are held Monday to Friday, 9.00am-3.00pm, at the SIT Sound campus (corner Don & Deveron Sts, Invercargill) or at SIT Downtown / Centrestage Theatre (Don St).