Sound Design for Visual Media

Discover professional-level sound design techniques in a demanding production environment that closely echoes the industry.

You notice the fine details of audio design and the massive impact they have on films, TV series, and video games. You love the creative freedom of sound and its power to make or break a project. You have great instincts and want to take your knowledge and techniques to the next level. You are a sound designer.

An Education in Sound Design for Visual Media

An Inside Look at Sound Design

Head of Department Shane Rees and VFS alumni discuss what you will experience over one year inside Sound Design for Visual Media.

An Inside Look at Sound Design

Create the Perfect Sound

Record, edit, and mix sound to build a personal library that will help define visual experiences.

Create the Perfect Sound

Train for the Industry

Experience the hard work and commitment required to work in the industry, maintain its standards, and build a successful career.

Train for the Industry

Program Breakdown

Develop your sound design fundamentals, including recording and synthesizing sounds. Discover the current industry practices in audio, and familiarize yourself with the main audio tool of the industry, Pro Tools.

Implement concepts, theory, and tools from the previous term in projects that involve editing background audio, foley, dialogue, and sound effects. Discover the foundations of game audio.

Explore more complex techniques and concepts in post-production audio and game audio. Put your growing knowledge to practice on film sets by acting as a production mixer and boom operator.Gain an in-depth understanding of MAXMSP.

Expand your post-production skills through sound editing and mixing, while taking frame rates and their practicsl implications into consideration. Enhance your game audio techniques using Wwise software.

Practice large-scale mixing in a 5.1 re-recording theatre with an Avid ICON D-Control ES console. Become more self-directed as you delve deeper into sound for film and game audio.

Apply your entire arsenal of skills towards the completion of your two final projects (Post-Production and Game Audio). Present your work to an industry panel for feedback that will help direct your path after graduation.

  • program length

    12 Months

  • Time spent with instructors

    1092 Hours

  • A Diploma in Sound Design for Visual Media
  • A personal demo reel and lifetime access to the online VFS sound effects library
  • Access to the VFS Alumni Directory and Job Board

Key Faculty

Our faculty members are working professionals with decades of experience at the forefront of sound design. They are dedicated to sharing their extensive knowledge and industry expertise to help you thrive in your career.

Head of Sound Design for Visual Media Shane Rees first photo

Shane Rees

Head of Department

Prior to VFS, Shane served as Head Engineer at Western Post Production. Shane has been recognized with a Leo Award for his film work, and three nominations for his work in television. He has worked on many of the TV shows produced in Vancouver, including Smallville, The Dead Zone, and Jake 2.0.

Post-Production Sound Senior Instructor Brad Hillman first photo

Brad Hillman

Senior Instructor – Post-Production Sound

Brad has worked in every aspect of film sound and has mixed nearly 1,000 hours of film and TV productions. His honours include a Gemini Award, three Gemini nominations, Genie Award nominations, and a Cinema Audio Society Award.

Game Audio Senior Instructor Jon Fish first photo

Jon Fish

Senior Instructor – Game Audio

Jon is an accomplished audio design lead, with experience on over 15 game titles spanning the past two decades. Jon has a Master's Degree, and has launched innovative audio techniques, designs, and workflows leveraged throughout today’s game studios.

Post Editing Instructor Steve Smith

Steve Smith

Instructor – Post Editing

Steve started out as a music recording engineer/mixer over 25 years ago. He eventually branched out into audio post-production and has worked in every facet, from Re-Recording Mixer to Foley Artist, and everything in between. 

Sound Design for Visual Media Instructor Curtis Wright first photo

Curtis Wright

Instructor

Curtis has worked out of several studios with Film and TV in town, including Sharpe Sound, Dick and Rogers, NGX Interactive, and Sound Kitchen. He recently completed all sound design elements for an interactive piece featured in Manitoba Museum.

Faculty Career Highlights

Smallville poster, Sound Design for Visual Media staff credits

Smallville

Shane Rees — ADR Recordist

Da Vinci's Inquest poster, Sound Design for Visual Media staff credits

Da Vinci's Inquest

Brad Hillman — Sound Re-Recording Mixer

FIFA poster, Sound Design for Visual Media staff credits

FIFA

Jon FIsh — ​SFX Sound Designer

Dead Zone poster, Sound Design for Visual Media staff credits

The Dead Zone

Shane Rees — ADR Recordist

Sharpe Sound Studios logo, Sound Design for Visual Media staff credits

Sharpe Sound Studios

Shane Rees

Medal of Honor poster, Sound Design for Visual Media staff credits

Medal of Honor

Jon FIsh — ​Lead Sound Designer

Intelligence poster, Sound Design for Visual Media staff credits

Intelligence

Brad Hillman — Sound Re-Recording Mixer, Sound Designer

Shanghai Noon poster, Sound Design for Visual Media staff credits

Shanghai Noon

Brad Hillman — ADR Mixer

NBA Live poster, Sound Design for Visual Media staff credits

NBA Live

Jon FIsh — ​SFX Sound Designer

Wester Post Production logo, Sound Design for Visual Media staff credits

Western Post Production

Shane Rees

SGU Stargate Universe poster, Sound Design for Visual Media staff credits

SGU Stargate Universe

Steve Smith — ​Sound Designer

The Sims logo, Sound Design for Visual Media staff credits

The Sims

Jon FIsh — ​Lead Sound Designer

Stargate SG-1 poster, Sound Design for Visual Media staff credits

Stargate SG-1

Brad Hillman — Sound Re-Recording Mixer
Steve Smith — Sound Supervisor, Sound Editor

Need for Speed poster, Sound Design for Visual Media staff credits

Need for Speed

Jon FIsh — ​Associate Sound Designer

Stargate: Atlantis poster, Sound Design for Visual Media staff credits

Stargate: Atlantis

Steve Smith — ​Sound Designer

The Gift poster, Sound Design for Visual Media staff credits

The Gift

Steve Smith — ​Assistant Sound Engineer

Jake 2.0 poster, Sound Design for Visual Media staff credits

Jake 2.0

Shane Rees — ADR Recordist

Free Willy 3: The Rescue poster, Sound Design for Visual Media staff credits

Free Willy 3: The Rescue

Steve Smith — ​Additional Sound Editor

Madden NFL Football poster, Sound Design for Visual Media staff credits

Madden NFL Football

Jon FIsh — ​Lead Audio Designer

Kyle XY poster, Sound Design for Visual Media staff credits

Kyle XY

Shane Rees — ADR Recordist

Watershed of the Future Exhibit, Sound Design for Visual Media staff credits

Watershed of the Future (Manitoba Museum)

Curtis Wright — ​Sound Designer

Disrien poster, Sound Design for Visual Media staff credits

Disrien

Curtis Wright — ​Sound Designer

BC Sports Hall of Fame logo, Sound Design for Visual Media staff credits

BC Sports Hall of Fame

Curtis Wright — ​Sound Designer

Campus Life

Located in downtown Vancouver, the Sound Design for Visual Media campus offers students all the industry-leading tools, learning resources, and production space for developing professional-level portfolios. The close proximity to other VFS campuses – such as Film Production and Game Design – helps foster the spirit of interdisciplinary collaboration. This area is also home to some of the world's leading video game developers and film and TV productions.  

Sound Design for Visual Media students capture the sounds of nature during a field recording trip

YOUR SOUND DESIGN CAREER

As a graduate of Sound Design for Visual Media at VFS, you’ll be trained to perform in a variety of roles within professional film sets, post-production studios, and game developers.

Recording

Sound professionals in this field typically start out as assistants and, with the right ambition and hands-on experience, grow into roles such as ADR Recordist, Foley Recordist, and Sound Effects Recordist.

Editing/Design

This field calls upon your skills and experience with industry standard software, such as Pro Tools. Career paths in this area include Sound Effects Editing, Dialogue Editing, Background Editing, and Foley editing.

Mixing

Mixing is a technical audio skill required across all sectors of the industry, whether you're working with dialogue, Foley, or sound effects. Once you establish yourself in an assistant position, you'll be able to work towards opportunities in film, television, and games.

Explore Your Other Career Options

Other Roles in Sound Design

Grad Career Highlights

Tomorrowland poster, Sound Design for Visual Media alumni credits

Tomorrowland

Jeremy Bowker  — Sound Effects Editor

Darling poster, Sound Design for Visual Media alumni credits

Darling

 Shrihari Venkatasubramanian — Mix Engineer / Music Producer

A Most Violent Year poster, Sound Design for Visual Media alumni credits

A Most Violent Year

David Chrastka — Sound Effects Editor

Dragon Age: Inquisition poster, Sound Design for Visual Media alumni credits

Dragon Age: Inquisition

Steven Bigras — Sound Designer

Big Hero 6 poster, Sound Design for Visual Media alumni credits

Big Hero 6

Angelei Hansen — Sound Effects Editor
Jeremy Bowker — Sound Effects Editor

Skin Trade poster, Sound Design for Visual Media alumni credits

Skin Trade

Ryan Schaad — Additional Foley Recordist

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare poster, Sound Design for Visual Media alumni credits

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare

Derek Lothian — Sound Designer

Guardians of the Galaxy poster, Sound Design for Visual Media alumni credits

Guardians of the Galaxy

David Chrastka — Sound Effects Editor
Jonathan Borland — Assistant Sound Editor - As Jon Borland

Lucy poster, Sound Design for Visual Media alumni credits

Lucy

Angelei Hansen — Additional Sound Design
Jeremy Bowker — Sound Effects Editor

Snowpiercer poster, Sound Design for Visual Media alumni credits

Snowpiercer

Julius Selbach — Sound Recordist

Maleficent poster, Sound Design for Visual Media alumni credits

Maleficent

David Chrastka — Sound Effects Editor

Halo 4: Forward Unto Dawn poster, Sound Design for Visual Media alumni credits

Halo 4: Forward Unto Dawn

George Pereyra — Sound Effects Editor

Captain America: The Winter Soldier poster, Sound Design for Visual Media alumni credits

Captain America: The Winter Soldier

Angelei Hansen — Foley Supervisor
Jeremy Bowker — Sound Effects Editor

Mass Effect 3 poster, Sound Design for Visual Media alumni credits

Mass Effect 3

Jordan Ivey — Sound Designer
Patrick Biason — Sound Designer
Steven Bigras — Sound Designer
Craig George — Backgrounds Editor 

Flowers in the Attic poster, Sound Design for Visual Media alumni credits

Flowers in the Attic

Craig George — Backgrounds Editor

Need for Speed poster, Sound Design for Visual Media alumni credits

Need for Speed

George Pereyra — Sound Effects Recordist

Admissions Info

To make sure you have accurate admissions information please select your region based on country of citizenship.

Tuition

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Start Dates

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Requirements

You will be asked to submit one of the following along with your application. Your advisor can help with selecting the best option.

Write us a letter demonstrating why you wish to take the Sound Design program (maximum 500 words).  You'll find information on how to submit requirements in the application form, or you can ask your Advisor.

When you talk to your Advisor, let them know that you've completed the Foundation program and they will put a copy of your diploma in your file for you.

For more about language requirements and other information for international students, visit the International Students page.

We Can Help

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