Music/Recording Industry { College of Extended Learning }

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Music/Recording Industry
Academic Credit Certificate

Music Business & Recording Arts Education

The Music/Recording Industry (MRI) program is designed for students who want to gain a solid foundation in the music business and/or recording industry. By choosing an emphasis on either the recording arts/technology or the music business, students carve out a career path for themselves, acquiring real marketable skills to compete successfully in a fiercely intense environment.

Typical career paths of our students include: musician, producer, engineer, manager or agent, songwriter, and publisher. Since the industry has radically changed over the last decade and has largely become a field in which Do-It-Yourself skills have become essential survival tools, much of the curriculum is focused on the self-sufficience of the student, and the ability to access all available means of production and promotion with superb technical skills, and relevant industry knowledge.

Music Business Classes & Professional Audio Engineering Certification

Music/Recording Industry Classes

Our school offers a variety of music business and recording industry classes, open to everyone. Take industry-certified training classes in Avid's Pro Tools digital audio software or Apple's Logic platform. Train with some of the Bay Area's top engineers and producers in some of the region's best recording studios. Learn how to become a record producer, artist manager, or publicist. Select any class that interests you, or follow our Music/Recording Industry certificate.

Music/Recording Industry Certificate

The Music/Recording Industry certificate offers a comprehensive education in all aspects of the music business. Students begin with a foundation in music business and recording arts, and then choose from a wider range of courses within a specific emphasis, either music business or audio engineering. In addition, students can select from a number of electives and seminars for the most comprehensive music industry education in the San Francisco Bay Area. All Certificate Students are required to complete a professional internship as well as a portfolio of projects such as audio engineering demos or music business and marketing plans.

Program Cost

The cost of the Audio concentration in MRI is $10,000 plus a $50 nonrefundable application fee. The cost of the Business concentration in MRI is $8,500 plus a $50 nonrefundable application fee. There is an additional cost for books and supplies of approximately $50 each semester.

Financial Aid

Limited financial aid is available for the MRI program. For further information, see our financial aid section, and go to the SF State Financial Aid site. In order to be eligible for Federal Financial Aid, students must have completed 60 units prior to acceptance into the program. Students can still be admitted to the certificate program without the 60 units completed, but will no longer be eligible to receive Federal Financial Aid funding. Students should start the financial aid application process as soon as possible. You must be accepted to the program before financial aid will be awarded.

For Financial Aid questions, please contact 415.338.2765, mohrmill@sfsu.edu.

Program Data Disclosure

The U.S. Department of Education requires that we disclose the information below for this financial aid-eligible certificate program.

  • Occupations the Program Prepares Students to Enter: The technical program in MRI prepares students for positions as Sound Engineering Technicians (SOC code 27-4014). See the Occupational Outlook Handbook - Broadcast and Sound Engineering Technicians and Radio Operators. The business program in MRI prepares students for positions as Agents and Business Managers of Artists, Performers, and Athletes (SOC code 13-1011). See O*NET - Agents and Business Managers of Artists, Performers, and Athletes.
  • Program Cost: The cost of the Audio concentration in MRI is $10,000 plus a $50 nonrefundable application fee. The cost of the Business concentration in MRI is $8,500 plus a $50 nonrefundable application fee. There is an additional cost for books and supplies of approximately $50 each semester.
  • On-Time Completion Rate: The program can be completed in 18-24 months. Based on data from 2011-12, no students earned a certificate and no students (0%) completed the program within 24 months.
  • Job Placement Rate: The job placement rate for students who completed the program in 2009-10, based on those graduates who responded to surveys sent by College of Extended Learning staff, is 50%.
  • Median Loan Debt: Based on data from 2012-13, the median Title IV loan debt for financial aid students in this certificate program is $6,250 and the average loan debt was $6,728. No students incurred a private educational loan debt for this program in 2012-13.


"I have learned so much from the MRI program. It has been worth the time and money. I have especially loved the independent label class. It has given me real-world experience that I can take with me when looking for work in the music industry. I mean, my name was mentioned in Billboard Magazine because of this class and the MRI program."

-Eugene Smith, MRI Student

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