What is acoustics?

Acoustics is the interdisciplinary science that deals with the study of all mechanical waves in gases, liquids, and solids including vibration, sound, ultrasound and infrasound.

Many people mistakenly think that acoustics is strictly musical or architectural in nature. While acoustics does include the study of musical instruments and architectural spaces, it also covers a vast range of topics, including: noise control, SONAR for submarine navigation, ultrasounds for medical imaging, thermoacoustic refrigeration, seismology, bioacoustics, and electroacoustic communication.

Jobs in Acoustics

Latest News


The spring issue of Sound Bites, the IOA e-zine for all students with an interest in acoustics, is now out.  Featuring a mixture of items on how ...


IOA members are being urged to respond to the Department for Education's consultation document, Acoustic design of schools: performance standards 2014.  The...


The Institute of Acoustics is offering free affiliation to all students in order to help them understand the subject better and how it overlaps with so many...


A wide range of publications, brochures, CDs and consultation documents is available through the Institute of Acoustics publication shop.

Latest Events

Eastern Branch
23 Apr 2014
Review of new public consultation draft of BS4142 'Methods for rating & (more...)

South West Branch
30 Apr 2014
Hypnosis: Sound and the loss of self from Mesmer to Brainwashing, presented by (more...)

South West Branch
11 May 2014
Trevor Cox of Salford University: Sonic Bristol Walk and Sonic Wonderland: A (more...)

15 May 2014
WIND TURBINE NOISE Thursday 15 May 2014 Crowne Plaza Hotel, Glasgow

London Branch
21 May 2014
Building dreams in space - the future of immersive soundscaping. Presented by (more...)

South West Branch
22 May 2014
Bristol Festival of Photography / IOA South West Branch Event Concentricism: (more...)

17 Jun 2014
Casting Light on Sound Exploring the effects of sound and light to better (more...)

London Branch
24 Jun 2014
Sonic crystals, metamaterials, acoustic cloaking and black holes Presented by (more...)

25 Jun 2014
Organised by the Measurement and Instrumentation Group A one day meeting on (more...)

The Acoustics of Organs and the buildings in which they are housed
04 Jul 2014
The Acoustics of Organs and the buildings in which they are housed One Day (more...)

New Technology for Engineering Noise Control
08 Jul 2014
New Technology for Engineering Noise Control Organised by Noise and Vibration (more...)

Synthetic Aperture Sonar and Synthetic Aperture Radar
17 Sep 2014
Organised by the Underwater Acoustics Group 17-19 September 2014 Villa (more...)

Reproduced Sound 2014
14 Oct 2014
Organised by the Electroacoustics Group 30th Anniversary Conference and (more...)

40th Anniversary Conference
15 Oct 2014
40th Anniversary Conference CALL FOR PAPERS - The deadline has been extended to (more...)

Key Sponsors

Education & Training

The Institute offers a range of professionally recognised courses for those interested working in any aspect of acoustics.