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Environmental and Architectural Acoustics (MSc)

Course Description

This MSc Environmental and Architectural Acoustics can be used as a conversion course for maths, physics, architecture, engineering or audio technology graduates. It's also suitable for professionals from fields such as music production and technology, engineering, environmental health, and many others.

LSBU has been offering courses in Acoustics for over 35 years, and houses the only centre for study with this level of facilities in the South-East of England,including full-size reverberant and anechoic chambers and an exceptionally well equipped and staffed laboratory, with access to the very latest instrumentation and technology.

This is a professionally focused applied degree and practical work is an essential part of the course, giving you direct experience of modern measurement equipment and techniques. The modules are directly relevant to the practice of acoustics, and also consider the broader aspects of investigation and control of the built environment. Half of teaching time is spent in the laboratory, and this focus is reflected in the balance between coursework and exams.

Individual modules can be taken separately as part of continuing professional development. For the final project module you'll devise and complete a piece of investigative work in an area of interest in considerable depth; the topic and scope of the project are selected with the guidance of an academic supervisor. For those applicants who already hold an Institute of Acoustics Diploma, there is an option of direct entry to the second year of the part-time Masters course.

See the website http://www.lsbu.ac.uk/courses/course-finder/environmental-architectural-acoustics-msc


- Acoustics laboratory
This module aims to convey the nature of sound and vibration with a considerable depth of knowledge through practical means, giving you an understanding of how to accurately measure sound, how sound behaves, and practical aspects of noise control. It introduces you to the basic principles of acoustics, familiarises you with modern sound level meters, measurement parameters and measurement techniques for noise surveys, room acoustics, sound absorption and sound insulation. You should be able to produce an accurate report to consultancy level which is critical of the laboratory, experiment, technique or instrumentation by comparison to the appropriate international standard.

- Architectural acoustics
The module provides specific acoustics knowledge as relevant to buildings and in particular rooms. The aims of the module are to gain understanding of room acoustics, measurement of room acoustic parameters and the various means of modelling the sound field in rooms across the frequency range.

- Measurement and control of sound
This module is designed to teach, at an advanced level, the physical mechanisms by which noise may be created, as well as to provide the analytic and practical skills required to control noise and vibration from a variety of sources. The module instils the knowledge of how to undertake noise and vibration measurements to meet specific acoustical standards and guidance.

- Subjective and environmental acoustics
Teaches, at an advanced level, the physical mechanisms by which the ear/brain interact to hear. The aims of the module are to: appreciate how human hearing deteriorates dependent on a number of variables; how legislation has developed to protect workers and how hearing protection can help under certain conditions; to appreciate the difference between subjective loudness and objective measurements; to learn how acoustic comfort criteria and legislation have been developed and applied to protect people in different environments.

- Environmental management
The module develops understanding of the way that human social and economic activities impact on the environment. The emphasis is on how managers can assess and influence the environmental impact of their particular organisation, with reference to key technologies and the political and legal constraints within which organisations must operate.

- Research methods
This module focuses on the essential communication and analytic skills required in research, including techniques for successful dissertation writing.

- Energy engineering project


Over the past decade a very high proportion our students have found employment in an acoustics related industry, and one or two outstanding students per year go on to undertake research on our sponsored PhD programme.

Completion of the MSc satisfies the academic requirement for corporate membership of the Institute of Acoustics. The process of attaining Chartered Engineer status is offered through the Institute o fAcoustics or the Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers.

Our past graduates include award winners and successful figures within the industry:
- John Hinton, past president, IOA
- Simon Kahn, Technical Director, Mott MacDonald
- Dani Fiumcelli, Acoustics Technical Director, Temple Group Ltd.
- Russell Richardson, Director, RBA Acoustics
- Peter Mapp, Principal, Peter Mapp Associates

Acousticians work in a great variety of industries and environments and this profession is in high demand, especially in London, thanks to the wide range and speed of new infrastructure development.

- Architectural acoustics:
Many types of new buildings need careful acoustic design to make them sound good, to protect them from nearby noise sources, to make them productive and pleasant places to live or work in and to make them commercially successful. This is especially true for places like concert halls, but equally applicable to universities, residential buildings, leisure centres and many others. Day-to-day tasks could include: design meetings with architects and other engineers, noise surveys of existing and new sites, design using computer and physical models, communication of the design to the client and design team, project management, site supervision and commissioning of the finished projects. This offers a balance between creative, scientific and practical skills and is a career that will always present new experiences and challenges. (http://www.ioa.org.uk)

- Environmental noise:
Noise is a major issue for society: 80 million EU citizens live in unacceptably noisy areas. Environmental health officers consider noise in planning new developments, such as housing affected by noise, or new noisy activities, and enforcement of existing noise concerns including the sources of complaints from the public. Consultants in environmental noise work in small specialists firms or large multinational consultancies, including engineering firms. Junior staff measure noise and use computer models to predict noise levels from new developments such as roads, railways and industrial plants. Consultancy can be a demanding job, but one which offers great variety and career progression. (http://www.ioa.org.uk)

Other areas you could work in include audio engineering, noise control and product sound, musical acoustics, speech and hearing, ultrasound, underwater acoustics.

LSBU Employability Services

LSBU is committed to supporting you develop your employability and succeed in getting a job after you have graduated. Your qualification will certainly help, but in a competitive market you also need to work on your employability, and on your career search. Our Employability Service will support you in developing your skills, finding a job, interview techniques, work experience or an internship, and will help you assess what you need to do to get the job you want at the end of your course. LSBU offers a comprehensive Employability Service, with a range of initiatives to complement your studies, including:

- direct engagement from employers who come in to interview and talk to students
- Job Shop and on-campus recruitment agencies to help your job search
- mentoring and work shadowing schemes.


LSBU houses the only centre for study with this level of facilities in the South-East of England, including a full-size reverberation chamber, anechoic chambers, two audiometric booths and an exceptionally well equipped and staffed laboratory, with access to the very latest instrumentation and technology.

Our specialised lab equipment includes:
- B&K Shaker
- B&K accelerometers
- B&K head and Torso Simulator
- B&K calibrated sound source
- BSWA two channel Standing Wave/sound transmission Tube
- Microflown Impedance Gun
- 2 KayPentax Vocal Load APM
- Svantek 6 Channel Vibration Meter
- JBL 6112 Subwoofer
- 2 Dodec Loudspeakers
- 3 Norsonic Nor 140 Class 1 SLM
- 2 CEL 593 Class 1 SLM
- Svantek 958 Noise/Vibration meter
- Norsonic Nor 132 Class 2 SLM
- 6 NTI XL2 Class 1 SLM
- 10 SoundBadge Dosimeters
- Rion Vibration Suite
- B&K Standing Wave Tube
- Norsonic Sound Insulation Kit

Teaching and learning

Members of the teaching team are all highly-experienced and award-winning, and you'll enjoy guest lectures from world experts. In addition,all are actively involved in research and consultancy, which enables staff todraw on the latest industry developments in both lectures and practical work.

Currently 50% of our full-time student cohort is from overseas.This allows our students to network across America, India, the Middle-East,Australia and Europe.

Visit the Environmental and Architectural Acoustics (MSc) page on the London South Bank University website for more details!

Student Profiles

Vice-Chancellor's Scholarship - 20+ Awards

At London South Bank University (LSBU) we understand how important a postgraduate degree is to career progression and professional fulfilment. The Vice-Chancellor's Scholarship programme offers a range of awards from £1,000 bursaries to full fee waivers, creating opportunities for a variety of postgraduate students. The programme is made possible by donations to the University's Annual Fund from alumni and other supporters.

Value of Scholarship(s)



All Home, EU or International students who have firmly accepted their unconditional or conditional offer of a place to study on an eligible postgraduate programme at LSBU are invited to apply for a scholarship in up to three categories. Their application will be assessed and, if successful, the student will receive one award. Only one application is allowed.

Application Procedure

You will be invited to apply online via email after you firmly accept your unconditional or conditional offer to study at LSBU. We recommend you apply for your place at LSBU as soon as possible to ensure you have been made an offer by the scholarship deadline of Friday 10 July, 2015.

Further Information


Entry Requirements

A Bachelor degree equivalent to UK Second Class Honours Lower Division in a relevant subject.Applications are also welcomed from those without the required qualifications that possess the life/work skills that would make them suitable to study at this level. Those applicants holding an Institute of Acoustics Diploma will be exempted from the appropriate taught units.

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