The one-year course in Sonology was introduced in 1967. The course covers a wide range of subjects including digital sound synthesis, analogue studio techniques, live electronic music, algorithmic composition, sound installations, field recording and sound and space. All lessons are taught in English.

The course is intended as an advanced course in electroacoustic music for musicians, composers, artists and engineers. But this one-year course also provides good preparation for the master’s programme in Sonology for students with a bachelor’s degree in a subject other than Sonology. During this course you can make your own choice from the range of subjects offered. Admission to the course is determined on the basis of a portfolio and a letter of motivation. There is no live entrance exam. The one-year Sonology course is not a Bachelor or Master programme and students are therefore not entitled to Dutch student finance or a student travel product.

Sonology is the field of study involving experimentation with electroacoustic music, computer music and sound art. The pioneers of the age of electronic music include figures such as Edgard Varèse Pierre Schaeffer, Karlheinz Stockhausen and Iannis Xenakis: composers with an inquiring mind who dared to move off the beaten track. Instead of composing with sounds, as is generally the case in instrumental music, in sonology the sound itself is composed in such a way that it gives expression to musical form. This can take place on the basis of the physical principles of sound, on the basis of perception or on the basis of purely compositional ideas.

The explosive pace of advances in the field of (computer) technology and electronics is also creating new possibilities for music and composition. Sonologists investigate these possibilities and add new elements to the musical domain. We are not bound by conventions or stylistic dogmas, but stretch the limits of the genre. It is an important role that we play and one that is integral to the world of new music.

The Institute of Sonology
The Institute of Sonology is one of the conservatoire's creative departments. Sonology has an extensive network of partners that includes the Groupe de Recherches Musicales (GRM) in Paris, the Netherlands Music Institute (NMI), Willem Twee Studios in Den Bosch, Studio LOOS in The Hague, the Technische Universität Berlin and the Game of Life Foundation in The Hague.

More information about courses and the department can be found on





1 year



Course fee

Check 'Course fees'

Department head

Kees Tazelaar


Leslee Smucker: mail

Introduction Royal Conservatoire