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Broadcast and sound engineering technicians typically need postsecondary education. Depending on the work they do, it could either be a postsecondary nondegree award or an associate’s degree.Education
Audio and video equipment technicians, as well as sound engineering technicians, typically need a postsecondary nondegree award or certificate, whereas broadcast technicians typically need an associate’s degree. However, in some cases workers in any of these occupations may need only a high school diploma to be eligible for entry-level positions.
Postsecondary nondegree programs for audio and video equipment technicians and sound engineering technicians may take several months to a year to complete. The programs include hands-on experience with the equipment used in many entry-level positions.
Broadcast technicians typically need an associate’s degree. In addition to courses in math and science, coursework for prospective broadcast technicians should emphasize practical skills such as video editing and production management.
Prospective broadcast and sound engineering technicians should complete high school courses in math, physics, and electronics. They must have excellent computer skills to be successful.Training
Because technology is constantly improving, technicians often enroll in continuing education courses and they receive on-the-job training to become skilled in new equipment and hardware. On-the-job training includes topics such as setting up cables or automation systems, testing electrical equipment, learning the codes and standards of the industry, and following safety procedures.
Training for new hires can be accomplished in a variety of ways, depending on the types of products and services the employer provides. Although some apprenticeship programs do exist, more frequently a new technician will accompany a more experienced technician to get the training and skills necessary for advancement.Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations
Although not required by most employers, earning voluntary certification will offer advantages in getting a job as a broadcast or sound engineering technician. Certification tells employers that the technician meets certain industry standards and has kept up to date with new technologies.
For example, the Society of Broadcast Engineers offers eight broadcast engineering certifications, two operator certifications, and two broadcast networking certifications. All of them require passing an exam. Similarly, InfoComm International offers an audiovisual Certified Technology Specialist credential.Other Experience
Practical experience working in a high school or college audiovisual department also can help prepare someone to be an audio and video equipment technician.Advancement
Although many broadcast and sound engineering technicians work first in small markets or at small stations in big markets, after they gain the necessary experience and skills they often transfer to larger, better paying radio or television stations. Few large stations hire someone without previous experience, and they value more specialized skills.
Experienced workers with strong technical skills can become supervisory technicians or chief engineers. To become chief engineer at large television stations, technicians typically need a bachelor’s degree in engineering or computer science.Important Qualities
Communication skills. Technicians need to communicate with supervisors and coworkers to ensure that clients’ needs are met and that equipment is set up properly before broadcasts, live performances, and presentations.
Computer skills. Technicians use computer systems to program equipment and edit audio and video recordings.
Manual dexterity. Some technicians set up audio and visual equipment and cables, a job that requires a steady hand and good hand-eye coordination. Others adjust small knobs, dials, and sliders during radio and television broadcasts and live performances.
Problem-solving skills. Technicians need to recognize equipment problems and propose possible solutions to them. Employers typically desire applicants with a variety of skills, such as setting up equipment, maintaining the equipment, and troubleshooting and solving any problems that arise.
Average Length of Employment
Top Careers Before Video Engineer
Top Careers After Video Engineer
Hispanic or Latino10.5%
Black or African American0.6%
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Full Sail University8.2%
University of Phoenix8.2%
American InterContinental University8.2%
Art Institute of Houston6.6%
Institute of Audio Research4.9%
Columbia College Chicago4.9%
State University of New York College at Plattsburgh4.9%
New York University4.9%
University of Maryland - Baltimore4.9%
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill4.9%
Northern Virginia Community College4.9%
George Mason University4.9%
University of Texas at Arlington3.3%
University of Northern Colorado3.3%
University of Florida3.3%
University of Massachusetts - Boston3.3%
Ramapo College of New Jersey3.3%
Arkansas State University3.3%
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|Job Title||Company||Location||Start Date||Salary|
|Video Engineer||Nytec, Inc.||Redmond, WA||May 02, 2011||$166,960|
|Director of Video Engineering||Viddy, Inc.||CA||Sep 05, 2013||$160,000|
|Head of Video Engineering||Altia Systems, Inc.||Cupertino, CA||Aug 07, 2012||$155,000|
|Senior Video Engineer||Twitch Interactive, Inc.||San Francisco, CA||Nov 16, 2016||$147,000|
|Senior Video Engineer||Flipagram, Inc.||Los Angeles, CA||May 05, 2015||$131,269|
|Senior Video Engineer||Twitch Interactive, Inc.||San Francisco, CA||Dec 29, 2014||$130,000|
|Head of Video Engineering||Ngcodec, Inc.||San Jose, CA||May 20, 2014||$129,394|
|Head of Video Engineering||Altia Systems, Inc.||Cupertino, CA||May 29, 2013||$129,394|
|Video Coding Engineer||Vidyo, Inc.||Hackensack, NJ||May 18, 2010||$125,408|
|Senior Video Engineer||Justin.TV Inc.||San Francisco, CA||Apr 02, 2013||$125,000|
|Embedded Media & Video Engineer||Apple Inc.||Cupertino, CA||Oct 01, 2010||$125,000|
|Video Engineer||Longtail Ad Solutions, Inc.||New York, NY||Nov 24, 2016||$121,500|
|SR. Technical Video Engineer||Checkm8, Inc.||New York, NY||Nov 15, 2015||$121,000|
|SR. Technical Video Engineer||Checkm8, Inc.||New York, NY||Nov 10, 2015||$121,000|
|Head of Video Engineering||Ngcodec, Inc.||Sunnyvale, CA||Aug 08, 2015||$120,000|
|Video Engineer||Smith Micro Software, Inc.||Mountain View, CA||Aug 15, 2010||$120,000|
|IMG Video Engineer||Apple Inc.||Cupertino, CA||Sep 15, 2012||$120,000|
|Senior Video Engineer||Fox Audience Network||Santa Monica, CA||Jan 16, 2010||$119,472|
|Senior Video Engineer||3VR Security, Inc.||San Francisco, CA||Sep 08, 2014||$118,800 -
|Embedded Media & Video Engineer||Apple Inc.||Cupertino, CA||Nov 25, 2010||$115,000|
|Lead Video Engineer||Clearone, Inc.||Austin, TX||Oct 28, 2013||$115,000|
|SR. Technical Video Engineer||Checkm8, Inc.||New York, NY||Oct 01, 2012||$110,000|
|Video Engineer||Vislink, Inc.||Billerica, MA||Dec 05, 2010||$104,339|
|Video Engineer||Long Tail Ad Solutions Inc.||New York, NY||May 01, 2015||$100,000|
|Video Engineer||Smith Micro Software, Inc.||Mountain View, CA||Nov 29, 2010||$100,000|
|Embedded Media & Video Engineer||Apple Inc.||Cupertino, CA||Sep 06, 2012||$100,000|
|Video Engineer||Longtail Ad Solutions, Inc.||New York, NY||Jan 08, 2016||$100,000|
|Video Engineer III||Cox Communications, Inc.||Las Vegas, NV||Dec 29, 2016||$97,011|
|Video Engineer||Fullscreen Inc.||Los Angeles, CA||Nov 23, 2015||$87,818 -
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