Office of Institutional Effectiveness, Research, and Planning
Photo of Michael L. Austin

Michael L. Austin

Director of the School of Music, Associate Professor, Music Industry Studies

Department: School of Music

Phone: 318.257.5473

Email: mlaustin@latech.edu

Office: HC 226

Address: P.O. Box 3144

Ruston, LA 71272


Dr. Michael L. Austin currently serves as the Founding Director of the School of Music at Louisiana Tech University. Austin’s research interests focus on music and sound in emerging and interactive media. He is a member of the Laboratoire Musique et Informatique de Marseille [MIM] (Music and Informatics Laboratory of Marseille, France) and a Research Associate of the Library of Congress’ Radio Preservation Task Force. His presentations and published articles include research on music analysis, sonic culture, popular music, video game music, viral music videos, music competitions on reality shows, interface design for internet radio, digital aesthetics, algorithmic bias in sonic interaction with IoT applications, sonic feedback and user-experience (UX) design, and the politics of representation. He has also published encyclopedia entries on computer music, MP3 players, digital audio, brand image, computer models of music, among others. He serves on the editorial boards of several academic journals, including the College Music Society’s journal College Music SymposiumThe International Journal of Gaming and Computer-Mediated Simulation, and Evental Aesthetics. He is editor of the anthology Music Video Games: Performance, Politics, and Play (Bloomsbury Academic Press, 2016) and is currently working on a monograph on representations of subalterity in popular and viral music videos (under contract with Oxford University Press). He also serves as Secretary/Treasurer and member of the Board of Trustees for the international Society for the Study of Sound and Music in Video Games.

As an active composer/arranger/sound artist, Austin has written for chamber ensembles, choirs, vocal and instrumental soloists, film, museum exhibitions, immersive video/VR, and sound installations. His sound art works have been exhibited at the Smithsonian’s Hirshhorn Gallery and Sculpture Garden, the Dallas Museum of Art, White Box (NYC), UT-Dallas, and at the 2015 annual conference of the University Film and Video Association in Washington, D.C. Films for which he composed music are screened in film festivals across the United States and Europe. As a professional musician, Dr. Austin has performed with various groups throughout the U.S., Mexico, Canada and Brazil, including the 18th Street Singers (Washington, D.C.), Dallas Pro Musica, UT Austin’s Early Music Ensemble, the Texas Bach Choir, the UTSA Lyric Theatre, UT Dallas’ Musica Nova Ensemble, the professional choirs at Washington National Cathedral, and other civic and university choirs and ensembles. An album he recorded and engineered has been published by Albany Records.

Prior to his appointment at Louisiana Tech, Austin taught at Howard University (Washington, D.C.), Missouri Western State University (St. Joseph, Missouri), UT-Dallas, and Collin College (Plano, Texas).