Boston Conservatory at Berklee’s Master of Music in music education (initial licensure) program is designed to prepare students from all walks of life to teach vocal, instrumental, and general music in K–12 classrooms in Massachusetts and across the country.
Students engage in substantial exploration of all technical aspects of teaching, including general music classroom practices, specialized performance ensemble instruction, music technology, conducting, and arranging, among others. At the end of the degree program, all music education students are expected to be proficient in playing and teaching woodwind, brass, string, and percussion instruments, as well as recorder and guitar.
Students gain valuable practical experience working with K–12 students in the Boston Public Schools Summer Music Program, along with various outreach activities in local community organizations.
This program is approved by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts as an initial licensure program for teaching K–12 vocal, instrumental, and general music. The Massachusetts initial licensure is reciprocal with most other states in the country.
What It Takes to Succeed
Students in the music education master’s program come from many different backgrounds and walks of life, but are always skilled musicians who share a passion for teaching music to the next generation. Those who thrive in the program are organized, creative, and enjoy collaborating with colleagues to set and reach shared goals.
The program has a uniquely scheduled curriculum that allows for flexibility, depending on the individual student’s schedule and lifestyle. It begins with a full-time, seven-week summer semester, Summer I, which focuses on teaching music to elementary school students, including woodwind and brass instrument techniques and teaching methods. Additionally, students will take first-level courses in music technology, arranging, and conducting, as well as in foundations of education and the education of special needs students.
In the first academic year, coursework includes practical training in areas such as classroom strategies and approaches, as students observe music teaching and learning in various school settings in Massachusetts. Additionally, students will take more traditional courses emphasizing reading and writing, such as child development, seminar in music education, and music history.
In the Summer II semester, students explore teaching music to secondary-level students and work on string and percussion instrument technique and teaching methods. American music and world music are additional features of the second summer studies. In the final academic year of the program, students will complete their student teaching experiences. They may choose to work toward their teaching licensure hours full time in the span of one semester, or part time in the span of two semesters. Over the student teaching period, students are placed in two different school and classroom settings to fulfill the K–12 requirements of the initial licensure.
Alumni of the conservatory’s music education program are currently working as band directors, church choir directors, choral directors, and music teachers all over the U.S. and internationally.
- East Somerville Elementary School (Massachusetts)
- Hillsdale Academy (Michigan)
- Kuwait Bilingual School (Kuwait)
- Lexington High School (Massachusetts)
- The Maret School (District of Columbia)
- The Park School (Massachusetts)
- The Peabody School (Massachusetts)
- Pechersk School International (Ukraine)
- Shingu University (Korea)
- St. Edward School (California)
- St. Maur International School (Japan)
- Tobin School (Massachusetts)
- Torrington High School (Connecticut)
- Tyngsborough Public Schools (Massachusetts)
- University School (Ohio)
- Waverly Central Schools (New York)
- Wayland Middle School (Massachusetts)
- Westborough High School (Massachusetts)