The Full Sail Real World Education facility based in Winter Park, Fla., has standardized on Stardraw A/V Lite for its Sound Dynamics course, which forms a crucial part of the Recording Arts program. Full Sail recently invested in 40 licenses of Stardraw A/V Lite, the entry-level design and documentation package from software developers Stardraw.com.
Explains Recording Arts program director Bill Smith: "The Sound Dynamics course, which is where A/V Lite is principally deployed, addresses the issue of audio itself—signal flow, acoustics, how studio design can affect sound, as well as basic live sound principles."
"As Bill mentioned, studio design and acoustics are a key part of this class, and that means that students have to go away and, using the principles we have taught them, design their own studio," adds course director Eric Abraham. "What interests us principally is the design of their studio, not the quality of their drawing.
"Before we had Stardraw installed on every workstation in the lab, everything had to be done by hand. That meant that I used to spend a considerable amount of time teaching students how to draw, and inevitably the quality of the drawing played a part in the final mark. Stardraw has changed all that in that it puts everyone on a level playing field. Now, I can concentrate on content rather than presentation, because everyone's presentation, thanks to the software, is excellent. In fact, we often get better designs as a result because the drawing time has been decimated. Mistakes or changes of plan are rectified in instants rather than [in] hours, or even days, if a student decides to rethink everything from the ground up. In other words, all the time that was previously spent on drawing can now be spent on design, and that benefits everybody.
"The other reason we went for Stardraw is that it is extremely easy to use," continues Abraham. "Students are up and running on it in no time, which means I don't have to spend valuable class time teaching them how to use the software, which is not what I want to do—I'm here to teach them about audio! However, saying that brings me to another important point about Stardraw: It has proved itself to be invaluable tool for what we need to do, but at the same time, it has become a transparent part of the process. It interfaces seamlessly with a host of other applications we already use such as Excel, Word, Ulysses, etc., and has become a tool of the trade almost without meaning to."