• Attend and participate in all sessions of your Deep Listening Certificate course.
  • Lead a Deep Listening Study Group that you organize from your community that meets regularly to practice Deep Listening meditation, improvisation, composition, dreaming and movement with exercises from Deep Listening: A Composer’s Sound Practice (2005) by Pauline Oliveros, Listening in Dreams (2005) by Ione, Deeply Listening Body (2006) by Heloise Gold and other literature in the\ Deep Listening bibliography as well as your own original exercises and compositions.
  • Keep a journal of your experiences and perceptions from your study group and listening experiences in the every day and of musical and sensory experiences of sound and silence that demonstrates your commitment to the practice Deep Listening as transmitted by the instructors and your understanding.
  • Investigate the difference between listening and hearing through your own experiences, your study group and through research about both subjects.
  • Create a proposal for yourself that integrates Deep Listening Practice with your own Interests or daily life and document your progress in your Listening Journal.
  • Create a bibliography of your readings and research and share with your certificate mates.
  • Seek regular meetings with your certificate classmates for listening and sharing sessions.


The practice of Deep Listening continually unfolds over time as a multi-dimensional process. Observing this process is a big part of the learning. A Deep Listening Study Group creates the opportunity to practice and experience development of listening skills with others. It is possible to experience and sustain a substantial shift in perception through practice.

Making a
proposal <
see FAQ page>, which incorporates your Deep Listening experiences and connects with your own special interest can accelerate the learning. If there is a connection with your own interest or area of interest there is more opportunity and motivation to practice. Documentation of observed shifts in perception increases learning.

Keeping a  <see FAQ page> (with  movement and dream experience incorporated) in an open form daily for as little as a few minutes to some hours intensifies experiences. Over a year’s time interesting patterns for study will appear in your chronicle of listening. Writing about what you are hearing is another way of listening and can bring about changes in your perceptions. Writing will help to ground your experience and build an overview of your listening and it’s value. Sharing with others is also of great value.

Composing your own listening exercises can bring process insight and help to develop your leadership skills.

Much has been written about listening in the last twenty years. Familiarity with the literature in art and science on hearing and listening and creating your own bibliography with annotations can help to connect your own experiences of listening to the larger community of interest that is continually growing.


Sonic Meditations were composed by Pauline Oliveros beginning in 1970 as part of the curriculum for The Nature of Music - a course for the general student at the University of California at San Diego. Oliveros also used Sonic Meditations for a weekly meeting at her home with a group of women for two years (1970-1972).

Oliveros also engaged in a nine-week research project at the Center for Music Experiment and Related Research at UCSD using Sonic Meditations with twenty people daily. Deep Listening Pieces are a continuation of Sonic Meditations. Many of these pieces have been composed for Deep Listening Retreats and workshops.  See “on Sonic Meditation’ in Software for People.

Software for People is a collection of essays from 1963-1980. The Roots of the Moment is a collection of essays, poems and scores from 1981-1995. (Also a recording) Sounding the Margins is a collection of writings from 1992-2010.

Deep Listening: A Composer’s Sound Practice (2005) describes the course that she teaches at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute that is continually evolving from the Deep Listening Retreats and workshops.

Anthology of Text Scores by Pauline Oliveros (2013) over 100 scores from 1971 to 2013. Useful for performances by study groups.

There is also a CD of an Oliveros piece titled The Roots of the Moment (1988) (hatArt CD 6009) of a solo performance - accordion in just intonation in an interactive electronic environment created by Peter Ward. See the Deep Listening Catalog for more citations.

Organizing a good curriculum helps you to understand the material. Your ability to facilitate a class is directly related to the organization and creative use of the material as well as knowing what the material is.

Center for Deep Listening at Rensselaer
Tomie Hahn Director
hahnt "at"