Sound and vibration, the acoustics engineering master's programme at Chalmers
Sound and vibrations are a fundamental part of our daily life. Visual and auditory stimuli represent our main source of information from the outer world. Therefore, it is to no surprise that sound and vibration properties are critical for the experienced quality of environments or products such as high-speed trains, road vehicles, outdoor and indoor environments, sound reproduction systems, virtual environments, or communication systems.
The lack of appropriate sound and vibration quality leads to dysfunctional products and environments. In the very end, it even may lead to adverse effects such as annoyance, sleep disturbance, and stress, impacting people's well-being and health.
Therefore, the master’s programme Sound and vibration is aimed towards engineers who want to contribute to a "better acoustic world" by creating products with high sound and vibration quality as well as functional and sustainable environments that offer space for recreation, supporting people's well-being and health. To prepare for such challenging tasks, the programme offers a broad education in the interdisciplinary field of acoustics incorporating fields as diverse as physics, mechanics, physiology, signal processing, psychology, and electrical engineering.
The programme structure allows for a specialization in different areas such as noise control engineering, architectural acoustics, environmental acoustics, or audio technology. Cooperation with other master's programmes inside Chalmers and at Scandinavian and European universities enables the range of specialisations to be further extended.
The master's programme has a strong focus on the link between theory and practical application. The focus is on identifying and solving problems by using experimental investigations, physical reasoning, analytical models, and numerical methods. This is accomplished through project work in small groups guided by experienced teachers, as well as through access to experimental facilities especially suited to this purpose.
As a specialist in sound and vibration, you will have the possibility to work in many different sectors reaching from the vehicle industry to audio technology.​
The subjects of acoustics, noise control and audio technology are fundamental areas in the Sound and vibration master’s programme. The courses included in the programme plan handle topics such as technical acoustics, sound planning, musical acoustics, vehicle acoustics and building acoustics.​
Master's programme structure
The master's programme runs for a duration of two years, leading to a Master of Science (MSc) degree​. During each year, students can earn 60 credits (ECTS) and complete the programme by accumulating a total of 120 credits. Credits are earned by completing courses where each course is usually 7.5 credits. The programme consists of compulsory courses, compulsory elective courses and elective courses.​
Compulsory courses year 1
During the first year the programme starts with four compulsory courses that form a common foundation in Sound and Vibration. Each course is usually 7.5 credits.​
Introduction to audio technology and acoustics
Technical acoustics 1
Sound and vibration measurements
Individual preparation course ​
Compulsory courses year 2
In the second year you must complete a master's thesis in order to graduate. The thesis may be worth 30 credits or 60 credits depending on your choice.
Compulsory elective courses
Through compulsory elective courses, you can then specialize in a certain profile. During year 1 and 2, you need to select at least 4 compulsory elective courses out of the following in order to graduate.
Human response to sound and vibration
Technical acoustics 2
Digital signal processing for audio engineering and active sound and vibration control
Design of silent products
Electro acoustics ​​
You will also be able to select courses outside of your programme plan. These are called elective courses. You can choose from a wide range of elective courses.
The educational profile in the Sound and vibration master's at Chalmers enables you to find professional opportunities as a specialist all over the world, especially in Europe where there is a strong need for specialists in the field. Typical examples of career opportunities as a specialist in sound and vibration can be found in:
Acoustic consultancies working with product development, environmental noise, architectural acoustics or building acoustics. Traditionally, the building industry does not have their own specialists in the area but relies on consultants.
The automotive industry has their own departments dealing with sound and vibration properties.
The communication industry, where sound is important for the quality of products and services.
Audio equipment manufacturers who deliver both software and hardware for consumers and for professional customers.
Public organizations concerned with environmental issues, housing, traffic planning and health.
Graduates from the programme can be found at companies such as Volvo Cars, Volvo Trucks, Sony Ericsson, WSP, AFRY, SWECO, Brekke & Strand, Cochlear, Sigma Connectivity, Zound Industries.
General entry requirements
An applicant must either have a Bachelor's degree in Science/Engineering/Technology/Architecture or be enrolled in his/her last year of studies leading to such a degree.
Specific entry requirements
Bachelor’s degree with a major in: Architecture and Engineering, Civil Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Engineering Mathematics, Mechanical Engineering, Physics
Prerequisites: Mathematics (10 credits)