Course dates

Wednesday 10 Jan 2024
7.30-9.30pm | 10 weeks

Course overview

Through a mixture of lectures, demonstrations, group workshop sessions, and discussions this unique 10-week advanced Field Recording course, delivered by Goldsmiths very own Dr Marcus Leadley, aims to improve both your theoretical knowledge and technical skills through a programme that embraces historical and contemporary sources, practical demonstrations and workshops.

I’ve really enjoyed the Field Recording and Soundscape Composition short course at Goldsmiths, largely due to the fascinating subject matter, and Marcus’ excellent teaching style and huge knowledge of the subject. Despite working as a professional AV Engineer for the entirety of my adult life, Marcus has introduced me to a wealth of information on topics that I was previously unfamiliar with.

Oliver Phillips, Spring 2021

The field recording and soundscape composition course led by Marcus Leadley has been incredibly rich, interesting and useful to helping me develop as a sound designer. The wide-ranging nature of what’s covered alongside the ability to share our work in the group has created very supportive and fertile ground for learning the basics, the more advanced technical stuff, and encouraging us to experiment.

Holly Fisher, Spring 2021

This exciting course, designed for those of you who have some experience of field recording and digital audio software, affords you the opportunity to develop already established skills and to shape your personal practice, while experimenting in an encouraging and supportive environment.

This course is a natural progression for those of you who have already taken our Introduction to Field Recording short course.

To avoid disappointment, please book your place on the course 72 hours prior to its commencement.

Course structure:

  • Week 1 - Field Recording – Basics and Extended Techniques
  • Week 2 - Building and using Contact and Coil Microphone & student presentations
  • Week 3 - Recording in the studio & Preparation for Field Trip
  • Week 4 - Field trip de-brief, Group Listening to Recordings
  • Week 5 - Digital processes #1 (The digital audio workstation – Pro Tools overview)
  • Week 6 – Digital Processes #2 (Alternative software)
  • Week 7 - Analogue Processes
  • Week 8 - Compositional strategies & Student presentation
  • Week 9 - Sound Installation practices
  • Week 10 - Group Listening and Feedback

Learning Outcomes:

  • An advanced understanding of field recording techniques and equipment
  • Transferrable skills that can be used in a number of different contexts, including sound art and fine art, as well as documentary film and radio production
  • A good working knowledge of digital audio software and an informed understanding of the various options available
  • An understanding of to use a range of microphones in the studio or on location to record instruments and objects
  • A well-developed understanding of the current and historical contexts of phonography
  • The theoretical, contextual and practical skills to help you develop ideas, make great sounding recordings and progress your practice
  • New, critical awareness of listening, recording, and composing soundscapes.

Technical Requirements:

Students may use any digital audio software of their choosing, but demonstration will be done using Avid Pro Tools – some familiarity with this Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) will be an advantage (Avid currently offers a free 30-day trial). You will also be introduced to a raft of alternative software (for free, wherever possible) for sound processing and treatments.   

Weekly sessions will be held over Zoom.


Standard £370 Early Bird £314.50

Goldsmiths offers a 15% concession rate on short courses to Lewisham Local cardholders, Students and Goldsmiths Alumni. Please email for further information.

Booking information

Please note our short courses sell out quickly, so early booking is advisable.

Wednesday 10 Jan 2024
7.30-9.30pm | 10 weeks




If you have any questions about this course please contact shortcourses (

For information on our upcoming short courses please sign up to our mailing list.

Disability Support

We are committed to providing reasonable teaching adjustments for students with disabilities that may impact on their learning experience. If you require adjustments, please contact us at so we can respond to your requests as soon as possible.

Tutor information

Dr Marcus Leadley

This course is taught by Dr. Marcus Leadley, a sound artist, composer, curator and academic whose work explores the relationship between sound and place. He holds an MMus in Studio Based Composition and a PhD in Sonic Arts. The title of his PhD thesis is In Situ Listening: Soundscape, Site and Transphonia.  Dr Leadley is an experienced field recordist and his current research interests include phonography, soundscape composition and acoustic ecology.

"Running this course online will pose some unique challenges but also create unique opportunities – not least that the course is now open to people who, under normal circumstances, would not be able to come to Goldsmiths every week! With the in-person course we have access to the Electronic Music Studios and the Music department's field recording equipment. In this online version, I will demonstrate the full range of equipment, provide demonstration recordings, and include more information for people who want to purchase their own equipment. However, I will also focus much more on resources that most people have available: their mobile phones, tablets and laptops. So we will explore ways to make the best use of these tools available." - Dr Marcus Leadley


About the department

The Department of Music encourages an atmosphere of open-minded debate and a commitment to all types of music from classical music and jazz to popular and electronic music. Our alumni play leading roles in the music industry and other creative fields. A hugely varied department, our former students have equally diverse lives - from classical musicians and Mercury Prize-winning pop stars, to lawyers, academics and administrators. We have a global track record for research that interfaces with historical studies, computing, audiovisual media, poetry and design. Our unique profile of research centres and units include the Sound Practice Research Unit, Contemporary Music Research Unit, Centre for Russian Music, Afghanistan Music Unit and the Asian Music Unit. We run many different ensembles, and an annual festival of eclectic, innovative and exciting work coming out of the Department: PureGold Festival. The Department also comprises excellent rehearsal and performance facilities including the Goldsmiths Music Studios, the Electronic Music Studios, the Council Chamber (with its Steinway Model D) and two suites of practice rooms.

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