About this Specialization

This Specialization will give you the knowledge and tools you need to record and produce professional sounding music. You will begin by developing your identity, vision, and intention as an artist and producer. Next, you will learn the technical aspects of music production, including how sound is translated into audio signals, recording techniques, and effects such as reverb, delay, and compression. You will also learn how to use the industry standard Digital Audio Workstation, Pro Tools, to create professional recordings. Finally, you will apply the knowledge and tools you gained in a culminating 4-week Capstone where you will complete a project beginning at the pre-production stage through the recording, mixing, and mastering stages.

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Globe

100% online courses

Start instantly and learn at your own schedule.
Calendar

Flexible Schedule

Set and maintain flexible deadlines.
Beginner Level

Beginner Level

Clock

Approx. 7 months to complete

Suggested 3 hours/week
Comment Dots

English

Subtitles: English, Spanish, Portuguese (Brazilian), Chinese (Simplified)...

Skills you will gain

Audio ProductionAudio RecordingMusicSound DesignAudio Editing
Globe

100% online courses

Start instantly and learn at your own schedule.
Calendar

Flexible Schedule

Set and maintain flexible deadlines.
Beginner Level

Beginner Level

Clock

Approx. 7 months to complete

Suggested 3 hours/week
Comment Dots

English

Subtitles: English, Spanish, Portuguese (Brazilian), Chinese (Simplified)...

How the Specialization Works

Take Courses

A Coursera Specialization is a series of courses that helps you master a skill. To begin, enroll in the Specialization directly, or review its courses and choose the one you'd like to start with. When you subscribe to a course that is part of a Specialization, you’re automatically subscribed to the full Specialization. It’s okay to complete just one course — you can pause your learning or end your subscription at any time. Visit your learner dashboard to track your course enrollments and your progress.

Hands-on Project

Every Specialization includes a hands-on project. You'll need to successfully finish the project(s) to complete the Specialization and earn your certificate. If the Specialization includes a separate course for the hands-on project, you'll need to finish each of the other courses before you can start it.

Earn a Certificate

When you finish every course and complete the hands-on project, you'll earn a Certificate that you can share with prospective employers and your professional network.

how it works

There are 4 Courses in this Specialization

Course1

The Art of Music Production

4.8
729 ratings
227 reviews
Explore the art of record production and how to make recordings that other people will love listening to. This course will teach you how to make emotionally moving recordings on almost any recording equipment, including your phone or laptop. The emphasis is on mastering tangible artistic concepts; the gear you use is up to you. You will learn to develop the most important tool in the recording studio: your ears. You will learn to enhance every aspect of your own productions, both sonically and musically, by employing deeper listening skills. Assignments will include posting your own recordings for peer review, and reviewing your classmates’ work by employing specific tools and strategies. If you use a digital audio workstation to record and mix, that’s great, but as long as you can record into your computer and post an MP3, you can complete the assignments. As you learn about the art of record production in this 4-week course, you will also learn about yourself and who you are as an artist and producer. It is not necessary that you read music or play an instrument to take this course....
Course2

The Technology of Music Production

4.8
347 ratings
110 reviews
Learn about the music production process—including recording, editing, and mixing—and the tools available to you to create contemporary music on your computer. With the recent introduction of high-quality-low-cost software and hardware, the tools of music production are now available to the masses. Albums are made in bedrooms as well as studios. On the surface this is liberating. Anyone can make an album for the low cost of a couple pieces of gear and a software package. But, if you dig deeper, you will find that it is not so easy. Producing music requires knowledge, dedication, and creativity. Knowledge is where this course comes in. No matter what kind of music you are making, there is a large set of tools that you will need to use. Each lesson of this course will demonstrate a different set of music production tools, loosely following along the music production process of recording, editing, and mixing. We will start with some background on the nature of sound and how we perceive it. We will then examine the components necessary to record audio into a computer, so that you understand the devices that sound must travel through in a music production process. Once recorded, sound must be organized along a timeline, a process known as editing. It allows us to give the impression of perfect performances and create many of the sounds we hear in contemporary music. The contemporary editing tool is the Digital Audio Workstation (DAW), a piece of software that stores and organizes all the assets of a musical project. We will focus on the editing tools that are essential in contemporary music production and that all DAWs provide. After editing, sounds must be combined or mixed together, so we look to the mixing board—a very creative place if you know how to use it. We will explore the basic functionality of both hardware and software mixing boards, including volume, pan, mute, solo, busses, inserts, sends, and submixes. The mixing process, however, includes more tools than the mixing board provides on its own. Sound must also be processed, modified from its recorded state to fit the context of the music. We will look at compression, equalization, and delay, and examine the many audio effects that are offshoots of these devices and how they are used in a musical context. In the end, the music production process relies on your creativity. Creativity is a product of the mind and will stay there, unexpressed, until the right tools are used in the right way to share it with the world. If you have an idea in your head, it will take numerous steps, each with an important tool, to reach your audience. You bring the dedication and creativity, and this course will bring you the knowledge to make that happen....
Course3

Pro Tools Basics

4.7
264 ratings
101 reviews
Producing music is an incredibly creative process, and knowing the tools of the trade is essential in order to transmit the musical ideas in your head into the DAW in a creative and uninhibited way. Whether you have used a computer to create music before, or you have been curious about production for years, this 4-week course will give you an introductory look into the world of Avid Pro Tools and Pro Tools First....
Course4

Music Production Capstone

4.8
49 ratings
22 reviews
After successfully completing the three prior courses of the Music Production Specialization, this capstone experience is your chance to use your talent and accumulated knowledge to create and submit a finished, fully produced song. As you go through milestones, you will work on your own or with other musicians to develop a song and vision for the finished product. You will then plan and execute its production, including recording, editing, mixing, and posting the finished product. All along the way, you will receive feedback from the peer review process, allowing you to tweak and refine your finished song....

Instructors

Stephen Webber

Director of Music Production, Technology and Innovation
Berklee

Loudon Stearns

Assistant Professor
Contemporary Writing & Production

Chrissy Tignor-Fisher

Assistant Professor
Contemporary Writing and Production

About Berklee College of Music

Berklee College of Music was founded on the revolutionary principle that the best way to prepare students for careers in music is through the study and practice of contemporary music. For more than half a century, the college has evolved to reflect the state of the art of music and the music business. Berklee serves distance learners worldwide through its award-winning online extension school, Berklee Online....

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Yes! To get started, click the course card that interests you and enroll. You can enroll and complete the course to earn a shareable certificate, or you can audit it to view the course materials for free. When you subscribe to a course that is part of a Specialization, you’re automatically subscribed to the full Specialization. Visit your learner dashboard to track your progress.

  • This course is completely online, so there’s no need to show up to a classroom in person. You can access your lectures, readings and assignments anytime and anywhere via the web or your mobile device.

  • This Specialization doesn't carry university credit, but some universities may choose to accept Specialization Certificates for credit. Check with your institution to learn more.

  • You can complete the specialization at your own pace, however, if you stick to the schedule, the whole specialization is 18 weeks:

    The Art of Music Production - 4 weeks

    The Technology of Music Production - 4 weeks

    Pro Tools Basics - 4 weeks

    Capstone - 4 weeks

  • You do not need to have any prior experience or knowledge in music production to take this specialization, however, if you are a seasoned music producer, this specialization will help you to continue to build your skills and hone your craft.

  • Yes. The recommended order is:

    The Art of Production

    The Technology of Production

    Pro Tools Basics

    Capstone

  • Upon completion of this specialization, you will be able to create professional sounding music recordings. If you are interested in pursuing a career in the music industry as a producer or engineer, this specialization will help you gain some of the knowledge you will need.

  • Throughout this Specialization, you will be required to record yourself or others for your assignments. These assignments can be completed with anything from a smartphone or computer up to a fully equipped recording studio.

    For the Pro Tools Basics course, you will need a computer and you will need to download Pro Tools for the Pro Tools Basics (there is a free version available). External microphones are not required, however they are recommended.

    Technology requirements and recommendations are thoroughly covered at the beginning of each course.

More questions? Visit the Learner Help Center.