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In this 10-week online course, students will learn directly with GRAMMY® Award-winning sound engineer and legendary producer, Francis Buckley. Each weekly Unit is filled with fresh coursework, assessments and practice videos guiding students through the basics of Audio Engineering.

Students can also look forward to engaging Live Lectures with Francis Buckley himself, where he shares his tools of the trade, gives hands-on instruction and answers students questions. By the end of this course, students will learn signal flow, console operation, what makes a great recording, and much more.

Course: 10 weeks, 6-8 hours/week
Cost: $599
Skill Level: Beginner
Certificate of Accomplishment: Grade of 70%+
Language: English
Next Start Date: TO BE ANNOUNCED


  • The five basic points of signal flow: busses, inserts and sends
  • The best ways to set up microphones and speakers
  • Standard recording console operation and design
  • What are the elements that make a great recording
  • Tools of the trade, including the basic components of a Digital Audio Workstation (DAW)
  • What it means to “translates” to other rooms

Once you’ve enrolled, just kick back and wait for your online course to start on the specified date. We’ll send you a reminder email shortly before your course starts.

  • Once your course is live, a new unit will unlock every week for ten weeks. Each weekly unit contains fresh new coursework, pre-recorded video lessons, assignments, and more.
  • Make sure to review the coursework every week, practice and prep questions, because you’ll have regular Live Lectures with Francis. During these lectures you’ll be able to ask him questions and interact with him.
  • Francis’ course includes four assignments which you will need to complete during units 1, 4, 5 and 6. You will receive instructions and requirements via email prior.
  • All assignments are graded and you will get constructive feedback along with your grade.
  • You can earn an MI Online Certificate of Accomplishment when you obtain a grade of 70% or more once your 10-week course is complete.

This course is designed for highly motivated beginner audio engineers. You will be taught new (and master existing) skills that require practice and precision. You must love music and enjoy researching and discovering new audio compositions.

You will be taught to understand the basic equipment needed to produce noteworthy music. You will also learn how to manage musicians and their instruments during a recording session.

  • A computer (PC/Mac) with at least 4GB RAM.
  • We recommend that you connect to an Internet Line with an average speed of 10Mbps or better, and to use an Ethernet cable instead of Wi-Fi.
  • The ability to record your work using a DAW (Digital Audio Workstation). Recommended DAWs include ProTools, Logic, Reason, Digital Performer or Ableton Live.
  • The ability to connect with the instructor via video chat.
  • We recommend using Chrome or Firefox internet browsers on MacOS, Windows PC, iOS or Android.
  • Full access to install software on the computer you are using.

How do I try a free lesson?

Go to the course page you’re interested in and click on the “Try a free lesson” button to sign up.

How do I enroll in a course?

No need to apply. Simply click “Enroll” on our course pages and create your MI Online profile. Once your payment is complete, consider yourself enrolled! All that’s left to do is put a reminder in your calendar of the course start date. We’ll email you a course date reminder and important info to get you started.

Do you offer courses in other languages?

Not yet but we’re working on it – stay tuned!

Can I take the course using my mobile phone or tablet?

Yes! You should, however, be aware that the Live Lecture chat box feature is not available for mobile devices. You can watch and hear your instructor but you won’t be able to ask him questions.

Are MI Online courses available for credit?

Not at this time but we’re looking into it. All courses delivered by MI Online are offered as an avocational option for individuals interested in music training and skills development. Courses are not offered for credit and are not applicable toward the attainment of any degree, certificate, or other academic award.

How many students are there in each course?

We have a maximum of 20 students per class for each of our courses. Our small class sizes helps create a collaborative, intimate space so that you’ll get the most out of your learning experience with your instructor and classmates.

How do MI Online courses work?

All our courses are 10 weeks. Each week you’ll watch pre-recorded video lessons. You’ll also receive an assignment, which is due before your scheduled Live Lecture with your Instructor. Your Live Lectures are your virtual classrooms and your opportunity to engage with, and learn directly from, your Course Instructor.

How long is the course accessible for?

You can access your course material for up to 12 months after your course ends.

What happens if I miss a Live Lecture?

We understand that our students come from all over the world and learn on different time zones. All our lectures are available for replay 48 to 72 hours after the schedule Live Lecture, so you can view any lectures you missed.

Which payment methods do you accept?

We support payments from Visa, MasterCard, American Express and PayPal.

Can I pay for the course using a Payment Plan?

Yes, you can purchase all our courses in three monthly installments using your credit card.




Francis Buckley
Award-winning recording engineer, Francis Buckley has been capturing great performances for more than 35 years, ranging from the groundbreaking punk act Black Flag’s first album “Damaged” in 1980 to winning the Engineering GRAMMY® for “Q’s Jook Joint” with Quincy Jones in 1996.

Having helped sell over 100 million records worldwide Francis’ portfolio includes an impressive selection of #1 albums. Francis has worked with the best songwriters in the world and was involved with the career development of such artists as Paula Abdul, Wilson/Phillips, Curtis Stigers, Jack Wagner, Stacey Earl, Tamia, Alanis Morissette and many others. Francis is the author of MI Online’s Audio Engineering Fundamentals course and teaches at Musicians Institute’s Hollywood campus.


Unit 1: Basics Course Overview. Audio Engineering basics.

Unit 2: Signal Flow The 5 basic points of signal flow. Understanding Busses, Inserts and Sends.

Unit 3: Signal Processing The three basic types of processors. Compressors, Limiters and Gates

Unit 4: Digital Audio Workstations Tools of the trade The basic components of a DAW (Digital Audio Workstation). Which DAW will work best for your type of production style.

Unit 5: The Studio Environment Speaker placement is king. The magic triangle.

Unit 6: Recording Consoles Standard recording console operation and design. The basic channel strip. Console center sections.

Unit 7: Microphones and Speakers Three basic types of microphones. Speakers / Monitors.

Unit 8: The Components of a Top Notch Recording Musicians, instruments, recording rooms/booths, engineers.

Unit 9: Making the Most of What You Have Making quick decisions. Always be in record-mode. Negativity has no place in the studio, keeping it positive.

Unit 10: Reference Material Listening outside of your space. What it means to “translate” to other rooms?

Fully Interactive Live Lectures with Francis Buckley

Graded assignments to test and track your progress

Fresh weekly coursework and video lessons


Francis Buckley has been producing records for over 20 years. His contributions as engineer and mixer has helped to sell over 100 million-plus records worldwide. Having produced multi-platinum recordings such as The Pointer Sisters’ Breakout, Paula Abdul’s Forever Your Girl, Wilson Phillips’ Wilson Phillips, Alanis Morisette’s Jagged Little Pill, Quincy Jones’ Q’s Jook Joint, and many others, Francis Buckley has now written MI Online’s Audio Engineering Fundamentals.

MI Online’s Audio Engineering Fundamentals will equip beginner audio engineers with the basic building blocks needed to start their career in music production. Join students from around the world and learn Audio Engineering Fundamentals with Francis Buckley inside a virtual classroom of pre-recorded video lessons, fully interactive Live Lectures, graded assignments, and more.

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