Franz Max Osswald, born in Winterthur, graduated as a mechanical engineer in 1905 at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (E.T.H.). In 1924, he installed a laboratory for applied acoustics at E.T.H. After completing his habilitation in 1928, he served as the first acoustician at a polytechnic, teaching as a "Privatdozent." Osswald described his discipline as an indispensable complement to architecture, technology, and hygiene.
Stumpf studied at the University of Würzburg—first aesthetics and law, and later philosophy with Franz Brentano. Because Brentano had not completed the qualifications allowing him to supervise dissertations, Stumpf wrote his doctoral thesis on Plato (1868) and his habilitation thesis on mathematical axioms (1870) at the University of Göttingen, supervised by Hermann Lotze. Both philosophers had a strong influence on Stumpf’s thinking and further writings.