Music Production Schools: Our Top Picks for 2024

Music Production Schools: Our Top Picks for 2024 Music Production Schools: Our Top Picks for 2024

Music production has never been as accessible as it is now, with countless tools available at your fingertips to produce and release music, all with minimal investment in terms of cost and time. So, why should you spend thousands of dollars and countless hours on a music course?

Because there’s no better way to unlock your full potential, whether you want to be a music producer, songwriter, audio engineer, or anything in between. Music schools renowned globally for their high-quality courses, experienced teachers, and valuable insight into the business, can skyrocket your career, and get you ready for decades of successes in music.

This is knowledge you won’t obtain by following YouTube channels and releasing your music by yourself, no matter how committed to the craft you are. Understanding the very nature of artistic creation, as well as the intricacies of the music business, might well be the key to the life you’ve always dreamed of.

So let’s take a look at some of the best music production schools in the world, the ones that’ll give you the knowledge, connections, and insights you need to produce music of the highest level.

Bear in mind that fees are approximate, and costs will ultimately depend on the program you choose and the financial aid you might receive. Many of these schools offer online courses, in-campus residencies, and activities that can change the course's cost significantly.

Guildhall School

Where: London, UK

Duration: Four years

Price (starting from): £9,250

How to apply:

Guildhall is a talent incubator that attracts art students from all over the UK and beyond. The Electronic and Produced Music Department at Guildhall combines a wide range of specialized classes, cutting-edge music production facilities, and unique career opportunities to prepare students for successful careers in the music industry.

The program features courses on film music, game audio production, new media, popular music production, and much more. Students can participate in diverse projects such as museum installations and film-music collaborations to build professional portfolios from day one and be ready when it's time to enter their highly competitive field of choice.

Guildhall's facilities include dedicated recording studios, high-quality hardware regularly used by professionals, and the most up-to-date software programs for music production. Finally, the school is renowned for its fruitful one-on-one tuitions with industry experts, collaborative projects, and partnerships with popular music businesses worldwide.

SAE Institute Music Production School

Where: Multiple locations worldwide + online

Duration: 2 years

Price (starting from): $15000

How to apply:

SAE is one of the most renowned music schools in the industry, and for all the right reasons! With around 50 campuses around the globe, and courses encompassing anything between EDM production and music business, there is no doubt you’ll find exactly what you’re looking for in their program.

Compared to "standard" university degrees, SAE has a more practical approach, offering a plethora of fast-track courses (between 12 to 16 months) focused on professional development and tailored to meet the demands of the entertainment industry.

They offer various levels of studies, including diplomas, bachelor's, and master's degrees, on anything related to the music industry, from music production to interactive audio development and much more. By becoming a SAE student you’ll get access to recording studios and professional equipment, as well as the priceless network of music industry professionals gravitating around the institution.

Berklee College of Music

Where: Boston (US) + Valencia (Spain) + Online

Duration: 4 years

Price (starting from): $25000

How to apply:

Berklee College of Music is an institution in the music world. With hundreds of Grammy award winners’ alumni, the Boston college has a comprehensive music production program that covers anything from sound design to soundtrack composition.

With its 20+ majors and graduate courses accessible both offline and online, Berklee offers a fantastic mix of music theory and practical industry knowledge. Their Music Production and Engineering Department (MP&E) is home to worldwide-known industry experts and audio engineers, and the course is carefully tailored to ensure you can customize it to your needs through dedicated classes.

The college offers a plethora of fast track courses, from three-month certificates to majors and specializations. There’s a campus in Valencia (Spain) too, for European students who don’t want to study overseas, which offers the same music production program. Finally, Berklee College owns the iconic Power Station Studios in New York City, where legendary albums have been recorded over the decades.

Pyramind Music Production School

Where: San Francisco + online

Duration: 6 months

Price (starting from): $3600

How to apply:

Pyramind offers one of the most interesting blends between offline and online school in the music production school ecosystem. It also offers one of the most diverse short-length music programs, with courses ranging between “Complete” six-month courses to 12-week short courses, online classes, and one-on-one sessions.

Their focus is on electronic music production, and with the official certificate programs from Avid Pro Tools, Ableton (with an Ableton certified trainer), and Wwise, you can rest assured your diploma will stand out for years to come. With over two decades of experience in the world of music and game audio production, Pyramind has provided hundreds of students with practical knowledge, invaluable tools, and an inspiring community of like-minded creatives.

Based in San Francisco, Pyramind has an in-house recording studio and label, which they use to skyrocket the careers of artists who joined their school. All in all, this is a music production school for students who value the versatility of online/offline learning, as well as a practical, hands-down approach to electronic music production.

Carnegie Mellon University

Where: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Duration: 2 years

Price (starting from): $73000

How to apply:

The Carnegie Mellon’s Music and Technology program has been active since 2009 and offers an interdisciplinary and innovative approach to modern music production. With classes ranging between Analog Circuitry, Programming, and Solfege, here is where you can learn everything there is to know in the world of electronic music production.

The program focuses on three macro areas of study: music, electrical engineering, and computer science, offering a unique opportunity to students coming from different backgrounds to explore the realm of music and tech. Whether you're into music composition, science, or engineering, the program is designed to give a breadth of skills to students with various areas of interest.

You can specialize in areas such as recording technology, audio engineering, computer music, music composition, music performance, and music theory. There’s also a course on musical robotics, which should give you an understanding of how cutting-edge the program is in the music field.

NYU Steinhardt

Where: New York

Duration: 5 years

Price (starting from): $55000

How to apply:

With 40+ courses in music production and technology, NYU Steinhardt is one of the most sought-after universities in the music industry ecosystem.

Their bachelor’s and master’s degrees in music technology offer a comprehensive overview of the industry, preparing students for a variety of creative paths, from film scoring to music software development and Tonmeister certificates. Marketing and music business are subjects included in most courses, to provide a wide overview of the music industry to future professionals.

High school students can also apply for a 6-week pre-college summer program, perfect for those who want to get a glimpse of the life at the NYU Steinhardt.

Classes range from XR system studies to sound engineering and acoustics, led by industry experts to give solid foundations to graduate and undergraduates alike. The school has thirteen recording studios on its campus, including the iconic (and immense) James Dolan Music Recording Studio. If you're looking for a recording school with world-class facilities, you can't go wrong with the NYU Steinhardt.

Point Blank School of Music

Where: London, Los Angeles, Online

Duration: between one week and three years

Price (starting from): £9,250

How to apply:

If you’re looking for a great combination of online/offline classes, and a wide range of courses lasting between a weekend and three years, Point Blank is an excellent option. And with worldwide-known alumni the likes of Leona Lewis and Pete Tong, you know you’re joining a world-class music program that can skyrocket your career.

One of the most renowned music production schools in the world, Point Blank was born in 1994 as a recording studio but later became a comprehensive incubator for artists, with traditional music classes but also a focus on electronic music production and the music industry needs. The school has had over 50,000 students globally, many of whom went on to have extremely successful careers in the music business.

From music business to electronic music production and radio courses, Point Blank provides a series of classes that are pragmatic and effective, designed for students who want to get the ball rolling from day one. With multiple campuses globally (London, Los Angeles, Ibiza, Mumbai, and China), Point Blank also has recording studios in all its schools and has an in-house record label to promote the students they most believe in.

UMass Lowell Sound Recording Technology

Where: Lowell, Massachusetts

Duration: 4 years

Price (starting from): $31000

How to apply:

UMass Lowell's SRT (Sound Recording Technology) program is one of the oldest in the country, but still offers a top-tier music production program with a unique mix of electrical engineering and music composition courses.

The school provides a thorough program in both audio and music production, covering a wide range of topics, from acoustics to computer science and almost anything in between. Their exceptional recording studios feature both classic analog consoles, and the university's renowned electroacoustic lab is available for students to use.

The courses are divided between Music Business, Music Performance and Studies, and Sound Recording Technology, each sequence of courses delving deep into the audio-related industry to give you a comprehensive overview of your career path.

Active for more than thirty years, the major in Sound Recording Technology at UMass Lowell is a respected and incredibly valuable degree on a global scale.

Johns Hopkins University Peabody Computer Music

Where: Baltimore, Maryland

Duration: 4 years

Price (starting from): $64,730

How to apply:

Part of the John Hopkins University program, the Peabody Computer Music degrees offer an extensive array of courses in Electronic Music and Music Technology, including Analog and Digital Synthesis, Computer Music Programming, Physical Computing, and much more.

With a history spanning six decades, the Peabody Electronic Music Studio offers a perfect mix of academic studies and hands-on experience, with students getting 24-hour access to recording studios and weekly one-on-one meetings with professors and experts in the field.

Perhaps the best academic path for anyone interested in the intersection between technology and creative music-making, Peabody's Computer Music program is the perfect degree for those who want to shape the future of music production by crafting their own sounds using the power of electronic composition.

Undergraduate students can specialize in either Composition or Performance/Concert Production, whereas the master offers specialization in Composition, Performance & Concert Production, and Research & Music Technology.

The school also has two students ensembles, the Laptop and Hip Hop Ensemble, giving students the possibility to perform live regularly and expanding their career opportunities.

Musicians Institute College of Contemporary Music

Where: Los Angeles, California

Duration: 4 years

Price (starting from): $25,000

How to apply:

An excellent option for those who want to combine in-depth studies in music with the creative Los Angeles vibe is the Musicians Institute College of Contemporary Music.

With bachelor’s and master’s degrees in anything from Audio Engineering to Music Entrepreneurship, the school offers first-class facilities, online individual courses, mentorship programs, and preparatory auditions for American Idol, The Voice, America’s Got Talent, and more.

Finally, MI offers a one-week intensive program on their campus every summer: a perfect chance to experience the life of full-time musicians on a Hollywood campus.

Breaking Down The Different Career Paths In Music

Knowing the best music production schools is crucial, but so is understanding what you're looking for when analyzing the programs of every single degree or certificate they offer.

The music industry is extremely diverse, with professionals coming from a variety of different fields, working in unison to bring to life a tour, an album, a movie sound design, and much more.

This is why it's important to separate roles, starting with a distinction between music production and audio engineering .

There are some roles in the music industry that are less creative, for lack of better words, than others. For instance, an audio engineer's role is usually considered less artistic than that of a music producer. That can be debatable, but it's still worth understanding that certain roles require deeper scientific knowledge, whereas others focus more on the creative side.

Nowadays, most music producers know about audio engineering, and audio engineers are familiar with audio production. That's because the rise of digital audio workstations made it easier to be in control of the entire creative process, making people in the industry more versatile and efficient when working on a project with others.

Both the world of music production and audio engineering contain a plethora of specializations that can lead to a unique career path. Game audio production, music software development, sound design, hardware construction: options in the industry are truly endless, and each one of them require years of study to be understood fully.

But is there something every music student needs to know in order to make it in the music business these days? Yes! Actually, there are two things you must absolutely be familiar with: digital audio workstations (DAW) and music theory.

DAWs are how music is produced these days, so entering the business without being familiar with at least one workstation will make your life harder.

With a DAW, you're in control of your art: you can make music from home, hone your skills daily, produce and release music whenever inspiration strikes, and grow your fanbase as a result. A DAW is the Swiss army knife of a music producer, and it offers endless possibilities once you unlock its full potential.

Similarly, music theory is something you simply can't ignore, regardless of your area of expertise. Audio engineers and sound designers must be familiar with the elements that define a composition, its mood and atmosphere, to be able to enhance the energy of the creative product they're working on.

To me, these are the things a new music producer or audio engineer should learn first.

How to Choose an Electronic Music Production School

Now that you pretty much know which schools offer the best music production programs, it's time to focus on how you can choose what's right for your needs.

There are certain obvious factors to consider, such as the school's fees and whether you want to relocate to attend a certain music course. However, what's most crucial is to define your main area of interest, which will help you narrow down your search considerably.

For instance, if audio engineering, mixing/mastering, or live performance setups are your things, you might want to look for schools that offer technical skills and a more pragmatic approach to education.

On the other hand, if your dream is to become a music producer, you should look for schools that focus mainly on music making, have plenty of certificate options from renowned software like Ableton Live and Logic Pro, and offer many possibilities to interact with instructors and other students to enhance your creativity.

This leads us to another crucial aspect: should you go for an online or offline course?

There's no one-size-fits-all solution here, and higher education is now widely available also online. Online courses are ideal if you have a job, want to study at your own pace, can't relocate to a new city, or want to save on commuting or living on campus.

On the other hand, offline courses are great for networking. The most renowned schools offer a network of professors, industry experts, and like-minded artists who can help you immensely in the first stage of your career. Imagine meeting in person and discussing your career options with an NYU/Steinhardt or Berklee professor: the hindsight you can get from a simple conversation can revolutionize your artistry and lead you to the best possible creative direction.

Most of the schools mentioned above also offer top-notch recording studios and music gear, giving you access to items you might not be able to afford at the early stages of your career, or ever. For instance, if you want to become a mixing or mastering engineer, trying out the best hardware for those tasks will give you an understanding of how to shape your unique sound signature in the future.

Finally, let's discuss the most crucial aspect when choosing a career path: time investment .

You can look at a four-year program as an investment for the future, but what if that prevents you from touring or performing regularly? Regardless of the field, a bachelor's degree in a certain field shows the commitment to a career path, but it's also valuable time you dedicate to studying instead of focusing 100% on your passion.

If you see that your career is already taking off, a fast-track or online school might better suit your needs and still give you the knowledge and certificates the industry is after. On the other hand, if you're in the early stages of your career and want to delve deep into the world of music production, a specialization in music production is definitely a valid choice.

The Pros and Cons of Electronic Music Production Schools

If we talk about the pros and cons of studying music production at school, we need to identify what the alternatives are.

Essentially, the options are three: music schools, private lessons, and self-studying.

There's not one that's necessarily better than the others; Prince, Frank Zappa, and Jimi Hendrix were self taught, and that didn't stop them from becoming legends.

It all comes down to choosing a formula of study that works well with your life and approach to learning new things. In a nutshell, here are the main pros and cons of studying in a music production school nowadays:


· Structured, guided, well-defined earning path.

· Networking opportunities.

· Credentials.

· Access to experts and high-end music gear.


· Cost.

· Long-term commitment.

· School location if lessons are offline.

· Certificates in the modern music industry can age fast.

Also, consider that you can actually combine multiple learning processes: you can study at school and have one-on-one lessons, and you can learn from home through a free masterclass, but then decide to go to school to hone your skills. Options are endless, so long as there's the desire to learn and progress.

Final Thoughts

With so many options out there, how do you decide which school is the right one for your budget and ambitions?

Given most music production schools cost an arm and a leg, enrolling in any of these courses is proof of commitment for music producers who are serious about their craft. Online courses are a great option if you don't have the budget, time, or the possibility to relocate, and most schools do offer a wide range of online classes.

Producing music is a creative process that happens in your bedroom studio as much as at the university campus, so while it can be valuable to get the best possible academic background from renowned schools, I'd recommend you invest your time in learning various production techniques and mastering your digital audio workstation, especially if you're not ready to spend tens of thousands of dollars on a music production school.

Hone your production skills, make music regularly, and most of all, have fun!

Bring your songs to life with professional quality mastering, in seconds!