Music and Technology: Sound Design (21M.380 spring)

Who teaches 21M.380?

21M.380 is currently taught by Florian Hollerweger in both, the fall and spring semester.

What is being offered in 21M.380?

Since fall 2013, 21M.380 Music and Technology has been offered in two different versions:

You can earn credit for both classes, even though they are offered under the same course number.


To get an idea of the subjects covered in the spring version of 21M.380, have a look at the syllabus from spring 2017.

OpenCourseWare archive (spring 2016)

For the spring version of 21M.380 (Sound Design), an OpenCourseWare archive from spring 2016 is available, which includes (among other things):

As per spring 2017, the archive can be considered quite up-to-date and represents an excellent resource if you are interested in the materials that we will cover in the spring version of 21M.380.

How do I get into 21M.380?

Although 21M.380 has no formal prerequisites other than permission of the instructor, both versions of the class have become rather popular among MIT students, and it can be a challenge to secure a place in them. I accept around 16 students each semester, and usually there are about two or three times as many students who are interested in taking the course. If you want to get into 21M.380, you therefore should

  • preregister, and
  • attend the first class meeting of the semester.

I usually distribute a short questionnaire in the first class meeting, based on which I decide which students will be accepted into the class. While I generally aim to accommodate the needs of music majors, minors, and concentrators, as well as of upperclassmen whose last chance it might be to take the class, the selection is also informed by your personal background and interests. Sophomores and freshmen have occasionally been accepted into 21M.380 in the past, and quite a few students get into 21M.380 only at their second attempt.