Best 15 Masters in Music Education Programs in 2021 - Best Value Schools

Best 15 Masters in Music Education Programs in 2021

Staff Writers by: Staff Writers

Top 15 Graduate Programs for Music Education

1. Fredonia State University of New York, Fredonia, NY 

Due to a relatively short completion time and reasonable per-credit tuition rates, a Master of Music in Music Education from Fredonia State University tops our list for those seeking to advance their music education career. Upon completion of the program, candidates possess the required qualifications of Professional Teaching Certification in New York. 

Two separate track offerings (30 or 36 credits) are available, one requiring a final project and one designed for currently practicing teachers that does not require a final project. 

Courses in the program include a mix of music education, theory, and electives. To qualify, candidates must possess a Bachelor of Music in Music Education.

  • Estimated completion time: 12 to 18 months
  • Tuition: $295 per credit for 30 required hours
  • Accreditation: National Association of Schools of Music

2. Boise State Graduate College, Boise, ID

For acceptance into the Master of Music in Music Education program at Boise State, candidates will need to have completed a Bachelor’s of Music in Music Education with a minimum GPA of 3.0. Additionally, the applicant should currently be teaching and supply the references of three professionals familiar with their teaching. 

Completing the program requires 33 to 36 credit hours, dependent on the results of predictive exams and the chosen area of emphasis; elementary, choral, or instrumental. 

A comprehensive exam is required before completion of the program. This exam can be taken anytime after earning 27 credits, including six core credits, three credits of music history, and three music theory credits. 

  • Estimated completion time: 15 months
  • Tuition: per credit for 33 to 36 required credits
  • Accreditation: Northwest Commission of Colleges and Universities

3. Kutztown University, Kutztown, PA

The Master of Education in Music Education program at Kutztown University receives high marks from current students and alum for its scheduling flexibility. Kutztown not only allows students to enter the program in any semester but can also complete online, on-campus, or a combination of the two. This flexibility enables professional educators to continue teaching while working on an advanced degree. 

Completing the program provides graduates with the knowledge required to attain teaching certification but not the certificate itself. Certain certifying classes must be taken on campus in person. 

  • Estimated completion time: 15 months
  • Tuition: $516 per credit for 30 required Credits 
  • Accreditation: National Association of Schools of Music

4. The University of Hawai’i at Mānoa, Honolulu, HI

Master of Arts in Music Education is attainable at the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa by following two possible tracks. One track, designed for those that have a Bachelor’s in Education, is for those that are already teacher certified. The second is ideal for candidates with a music undergrad degree but do not have teaching certification or experience leading a classroom. 

The university’s resources and facilities are exceptional, including a large performance auditorium, 23 practice rooms, a 110 choral room, an orchestra room, and a music library with 21,500 scores and 100 serials. 

  • Estimated completion time: 18 Months
  • Tuition: $471 per credit for 30 – 62 required credits
  • Accreditation: National Association of Schools of Music 5. 

5. University of Missouri, Columbia, MO

Master of Music in Music Education

The professors of the University of Missouri’s Masters in Music Education program are an impressive list of music educators devoted to promoting the subject at the pre-K through 12 levels. Candidates in the program can go full-time on-campus or part-time with flexible evening, summer, and online courses. 

Acceptance to the program does not require teaching certification or classroom experience. However, applicants without certification will need to complete an additional nine credit hours in education or music education. 

  • Estimated completion time: 18 months
  • Tuition: $498 for 32 required credits
  • Accreditation: National Association of Schools of Music 

6. Central Washington University, Ellensworth, WA

Master of Music Education

Central Washington University delivers a Master’s in Music Education uniquely and practically for those currently teaching. Without breaking from their careers or balancing teaching and classes simultaneously, candidates can complete the summer sessions program. 

Three-week intensive on-campus June sessions allow candidates to graduate within 25 months. Credit permitted for classes taught during the school year as part of an ongoing project. 

As part of the application, candidates must submit a music education-related writing sample, proof of one year of teaching experience, and a live audition, video, or audio performance. 

  • Estimated completion time: 24 Months – summer sessions only
  • Tuition: $674 per credit for required 45 credits
  • Accreditation: National Association of Schools of Music

7. Anderson University, Anderson, IN

Master of Music Education

Attaining a Master of Music Education degree from Anderson University is an ideal opportunity for working teachers. With a minimum of one year of teaching under their belts, applicants will need to submit two professional recommendations and a writing sample. 

Once accepted, candidates find that the combination of online video courses, live Skype classes, and on-campus courses allow the flexibility that they need as they proceed in their careers. Six-week intensive summer sessions help the candidates to move through the program more quickly.

  • Estimated completion time: 24 Months
  • Tuition: $400 per credit for 32 required credits
  • Accreditation: National Association of Schools of Music

8. Old Dominion University, Norfolk, VA

Master of Music Education

Candidates for the Master of Music Education program at Old Dominion’s Diehn School of Music will choose a concentration in applied studies, conducting, research, or pedagogy. Alumni of the University’s music programs are most complimentary of the school’s flexibility in scheduling and courses’ availability. Although all of the courses are on-campus classes, the schedule provides ample choice for working professionals.  

Application requirements include GRE or MAT scores, a musical performance audition, completion of a baccalaureate program with at least a 3.0 GPA, and two reference letters. 

  • Estimated completion time: 18 months
  • Tuition: $551 per Credit for 34 required credits
  • Accreditation: National Association of Schools of Music

9. Pennsylvania State University, State College, PA

Master of Music Education

Before applying to the Penn State Master of Music Education program, potential applicants must have teaching experience in a K-12 classroom beyond their student teaching experience. 

Acceptance to the program requires one full-term year on the main campus in State College plus two summer sessions. Completing the degree depends on a final research project with an article-length academic paper and a department committee presentation. This presentation and follow-up questions by faculty members replace a final comprehensive exam.

  • Estimated completion time: 15 months
  • Tuition: $936 for 30 required credits
  • Accreditation: National Association of Schools of Music

9. Bard College, Cambridge, MA

Master of Music in Music Education

Bard College’s Longy School of Music offers a unique Master of Music in Music Education degree for performers looking to make a difference in children’s lives. 

Upon graduation, candidates have the knowledge needed to certify for teaching in Massachusetts public schools. Musicians and artists from all musical backgrounds are encouraged to apply and receive valuable experience teaching in the underserved communities in the greater Boston area. To be considered for admission, candidates must have a Bachelor’s degree, conservatory diploma, or equivalent credential.

  • Estimated completion time: 12 months
  • Tuition: $1148 per credit for required 40 Credits
  • Accreditation: Commission on Higher Education of the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools

9. University of Northern Colorado, Greeley CO

Master of Music with Music Education Concentration

University of Northern Colorado’s Master of Music program equally emphasizes the most current music education trends and music history and traditions. The faculty consists of an impressive list of nationally recognized experts that work closely with individual students to expand musicianship and teaching skills. Additionally, candidates are encouraged to work with faculty on research projects. Upon completing the required credit hours, students may take a comprehensive exam or present a thesis or project to faculty. 

  • Estimated completion time: 18 Months 
  • Tuition: $560 per credit for 30-33 required credits
  • Accreditation: National Association of Schools of Music

12. University of Louisiana, Monroe, LA

Master of Music Education 

There are two possible concentration areas of study in the Master of Music Education at ULM, Choral General Music and Instrumental. Degrees in each of these concentrations are available through participation in on-campus, summer-only sessions—the only program of its kind in Louisiana. 

These summer sessions allow candidates to complete the program in three years without taking a break from their teaching careers. 

Comparative to the other programs on this list, three years may seem like a long time. However, alumni give the program high marks for convenience, quality of faculty, and affordability. It is one of the most affordable graduate programs in Louisiana. 

  • Completion time: 36 Months (June Only)
  • Tuition: $517 per credit for 36 required credits
  • Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

13. Boston University, Boston, MA  

Master of Music in Music Education

Boston University is a world-renowned institution for both its undergraduate and graduate programs in music. BU’s  Master of Music in Music Education program empowers students to customize their education through in-depth research opportunities, various elective courses, and a track that allows graduate students to simultaneously qualify for Level 1 Technology Institute for Music Educators certification. 

To expedite the program’s completion, students can participate in intensive one and two-week summer sessions electives. 

  • Estimated completion time: 22 Months
  • Tuition: $889 per credit for 32 required credits
  • Accreditation: National Association of Schools of Music 

14. Southern Utah University, Cedar City, UT

Master of Music Education

Designed with the working educator in mind, Southern Utah University’s Master of Music Education program centers around three-week summer sessions and online classes during the school year. Also, candidates are required to use their classrooms to complete assignments and practice learned techniques. 

Applicants should have achieved a 3.0 GPA in undergraduate studies, possess a current teaching certification, and provide three letters of recommendation, including proof of active employment in a music ensemble classroom. 

  • Completion time: 24 Months
  • Tuition: $742 per credit for 30 required credits
  • Accreditation: National Association of Schools of Music

15. Vandercook College of Music, Chicago, IL

Master of Music Education

Another program that facilitates continuing education without taking a break from a teaching career, Vandercook College of Music, offers convenient scheduling and flexible requirements with its Master of Music Education.

Candidates choose to specialize in the fields of band, choral, string, or general music education. Customizable course selection and various electives allow for creating a track that fits individual academic and professional goals. 

Applicants should have a bachelor’s in music education, a minimum Undergrad GPA of 3.0, and at least two years of teaching experience. 

  • Estimated completion time: 3 Years
  • Tuition: $570 per credit for 32 required credits
  • Accreditation: National Association of Schools of Music

Our Ranking Methodology

Music education professionals interested in furthering their education will find several full and part-time options. Whether you are considering a break from your career, balancing teaching and taking classes, or want a summers-only program, you will find a Masters in Music Education program that fits. 

To narrow down an extensive list of options, we attributed a point system and ranked these programs, one through 15, based on tuition and estimated completion time. 

We welcome representatives of the above schools to contact us with corrections or inquiries. If you are interested in having your school’s programs reviewed, we’d like to hear from you as well. 

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