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Audio Engineering Technology As A Gateway To Engineering And Engineering Technology

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2003 Annual Conference


Nashville, Tennessee

Publication Date

June 22, 2003

Start Date

June 22, 2003

End Date

June 25, 2003



Conference Session

Recruitment and Retention

Page Count


Page Numbers

8.254.1 - 8.254.6



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Paper Authors

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Timothy Britt

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Dr. Tom Eppes

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 3448

Audio Technology as a Gateway to Engineering

Professor Timothy Britt, Dr. Tom Eppes Ward College, University of Hartford


The B.S. Audio Engineering Technology (AET) program at Ward College (University of Hartford) is attracting a great deal of interest by young people looking to enter the audio and music industry1. It has also turned into an excellent gateway for students to enter a variety of other engineering programs.

Many students initially attracted by the audio and music areas, become interested in the broader study of electronics as a discipline. Each semester, some students ask about pursuing an Electrical Engineering (EE) or Electronics Engineering Technology (EET) degree. This gateway led Professor Britt (one of the co-authors) to obtain separate four-year degrees in Electronics Engineering Technology and Electrical Engineering.

AET is a proven way to increase the number students that enroll and pursue careers in engineering and engineering technology. It has attracted the attention of the academic community looking to reverse enrollment declines. A scan of ASEE member institutions shows that Ward College offers the only baccalaureate program in Audio Engineering Technology (AET).

Our AET program has grown from five (5) students to seventy-five (75) in the eight-year life of the program. Fall 2002 saw an increase of 17 % from the previous year. These strong results more than offset declining enrollment in our B.S. Electronics Engineering Technology (EET) and B.S, Computer Engineering Technology (CET) programs. On a combined basis, fulltime enrollment is up 20% during the last three years.


The current academic climate for technology programs differs greatly from the 1980s. During that decade, interest in EET and CET was high. Computers and the Internet were not major factors, and their impact and influence on career choices of technically oriented students was minimal. Audio technology, as a component of the media industry, was also in its infancy.

In the 1990s, the Internet’s media capabilities combined with advances in computers and software changed young people’s attitudes towards electronics. Some pundits believe the rise of the PC has cast a shadow on the perception of electronics technology. It is no longer seen as the “cutting edge”. Prospective students are able to gain skills and experience to a variety of

“Proceedings of the 2003 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright 2003, American Society for Engineering Education”

Britt, T., & Eppes, D. T. (2003, June), Audio Engineering Technology As A Gateway To Engineering And Engineering Technology Paper presented at 2003 Annual Conference, Nashville, Tennessee. 10.18260/1-2--12209

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