Earn your online music education degree from Southern Miss!
You know music is your passion, and you want to share that passion with your students. You know the time and dedication that goes into mastering your art. Simply put, you just want more. You are ready to share your knowledge and skills with the world, but being a classroom student doesn’t fit into your busy schedule. Let Online at Southern Miss bring the classroom to you! We can help you reach your goal without ever stepping inside of a traditional classroom with our fully online Music Education degree.
Our Master’s in Music Education program is designed specifically for individuals who are currently teaching or involved in the professional world and want to earn their Master’s in Music Education degree from anywhere, at any time. This convenient and affordable online degree gives you the tools to improve your teaching techniques, and offers you the opportunity to address topics that are relevant in music education today. Online at Southern Miss is bringing the classroom to you. This is your life, plus college.
Your future starts at Southern Miss!
The University of Southern Mississippi is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools of Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC). Additionally, the online Music Education degree is also accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music (NASM). That means you can expect a program with the highest standards and quality.
The Graduate School will be authorizing standardized test waivers to applicants to the Fall 2020 and Spring 2021 terms.
- Assistant/Associate Professor
- Music Faculty
- Community Outreach and Civic Instructional
- Music and Liturgy Minister
- Art, Music, Occupational, or Recreational Therapist
- Fine Arts Project Consultant
- Group Facilitator
- Adjunct Instructor – Applied Music
- Reference and Instruction Libraries
- Elective Program Specialist – Music, Fine Arts, PE
- Elementary Music Educator
- Middle School Music Educator
- High School Music Educator
Required Courses (30 hours)
Completion of a bachelor’s degree in music education at The University of Southern Mississippi or an equivalent program that included student teaching and state licensure.
The Distance program can be completed in 18 to 24 months, taking 2 to 3 courses online during the fall and spring, and 3 to 4 courses during the summer. Some courses require a two-week intensive residency occurring at the end of June.
Students applying for the distance program must submit an example of writing (any research or report written in the last year or a 3 to 5 page literature review on a music education topic of choice) along with a cover letter requesting admission to the distance program.
Required Courses (30 hours)
Educational Research: Interpretation and Applications
Music Education Research Designs
Developing a Student-Centered Curriculum
Music Education Curriculum Development
Foundations and Principles of Music Education
- Electives in Music Education (15 hrs.)
- Music History Electives – MUS 630 may be required. 3 hrs.
- Music Theory Electives – MUS 620 may be required. 3 hrs.
A 3.0 GPA is required for graduation. Graduate students must receive a grade of B- or better in any class for it to count toward graduation requirements.
Please note that the above information is meant to be a guide and is not official. For further information regarding courses for this degree, see the University Bulletin. Please be aware that not all course choices listed in the University Bulletin are available online. However, sufficient online options are available to complete this degree.
Frequently Asked Questions
Licensure requirements and approval are determined by each state’s licensing board. For additional information about professional licensure, please review the Professional Licensure Disclosures web page.
Additional course fees for the online music education degree track may apply. Fees range between $20 – $60.
In addition to the steps listed above for Admission Requirements, then apply through the Southern Miss Graduate School through the graduate school application portal at http://apps.usm.edu/graduate-school/grad-school-apps/.
Typically the online music education degree program is completed in 18-24 months, taking 2 or 3 courses online during the fall and spring, and 3 to 4 courses during the summer. Some courses require a two-week intensive residency occurring at the end of June.
We offer admissions in the fall, spring and summer.
- Summer admission only: Deadline: March 1
No, all online classes are charged in-state tuition.
Click here and choose the term that applies to view the costs associated with part time enrollment.
No, the Online Masters in Music Education is designed for practicing teachers and no thesis is required.
Yes, comprehensive exams are given the semester the student intends to graduate and are in the area of Music Education only.
No, you can arrange to have the comprehensive exam proctored where you are located.
Please visit our programs page here: https://online.usm.edu/programs/
Other classes that aren’t listed may count towards your online music education degree once your transcript has been evaluated and posted.
Yes, the program is available totally online. Students are not required to visit campus for an in-class lecture; however, an online lecture may be required by your instructor.
If yes, visit online.usm.edu/military for more information on how Southern Miss can serve you and your needs. We will help you with funding and scholarship information, admissions, and course enrollment.
Every online music education degree student is given individualized attention through a graduate student advisor. Once admitted, you will be assigned an advisor in the music education program and receive storage space in MS Office 365 OneDrive for your documents to be shared with your advisor and the School of Music Graduate Coordinator. Directions for installing Microsoft Office 365 for free as a graduate student are found at (https://www.usm.edu/itech/microsoft-office-365
Acceptance into the master’s degree programs of the School of Music requires expectations beyond those in the Graduate Bulletin. Admission to graduate study does not imply admission to candidacy for a master’s degree. A maximum of nine (9) hours of graduate work earned before one has gained admission to the School of Music can be applied toward a master’s degree. Members of all under-represented groups are strongly encouraged to apply.
Students seeking regular admission to master’s level programs at The University of Southern Mississippi must:
- Hold a music degree or minor in the undergraduate degree.
- Have a “B” average or better on music courses in the undergraduate degree.
- Have a grade point average of at least 2.75 (A = 4.0) on the last two years of undergraduate study.
- Submit test scores of the General Test of the Graduate Record Examination.
- Writing Sample that demonstrates your ability to write original research.
- Submit at least three strong letters of recommendation and/or undergo a successful personal interview.
Students who are unable to meet regular admission standards may be considered for conditional admission. For details concerning conditional admission, see Admission Requirements and Procedures.
Please note: The Graduate Record Examination is required for both conditional and regular admission. Students who are admitted conditionally must go through an interview process with area faculty.
Program Requirements and Academic Policies
With the exception of the online Master of Music Education degree, all entering master’s students for the Master of Music Education (MME) are required to take a Diagnostic Entrance Examination in music theory and in music history & literature. The purposes of this examination are 1) to determine whether the student has foundation-level deficiencies that need to be addressed in order for her/him to be successful in graduate courses and on the comprehensive examination; and 2) to provide information that will guide the student and his/her advisor in selecting useful and appropriate academic courses.
Diagnostic Examinations are administered on campus in fall, spring, and summer each Thursday and/or Friday preceding the first day of classes or as announced by the Coordinator of Graduate Studies. Newly admitted students should always see the Coordinator for the most up-to-date information.
Students who do not pass the history diagnostic exam must enroll in MUS 630. Students who do not pass the theory diagnostic exam must enroll in MUS 620. MUS 620 and MUS 630 must be taken in the first two semesters of graduate work. Exceptions to this requirement may be granted for the summer semester only and will be considered on an individual basis. Undergraduate music theory and/or history courses may be required as prerequisites to further study in graduate music theory or history. Students who do not pass the music theory review, or the history review (or required undergraduate courses) will not be allowed to enroll in further study in music history or music theory until the grade of “B-” or better is earned in the required course(s). MUS 620 and MUS 630 are required courses for the MME Online track.
NOTE: Only the MME (Online) students may enroll in MUS 620X and MUS 630X for graduate credit. Resident students must enroll in MUS 620 and MUS 630.
Early in the first term of full-time residence or before nine (9) hours of graduate credit have been earned, the student and the major professor select those faculty who will serve as the student’s Advisory Committee. Master’s committees must include three members: 1) the major professor, 2) another professor from the major area, 3) a representative from Music Theory or Music History. Changes to this formula must be pre-approved in writing by the School of Music Director. These faculty members will help the student plan his/her program of study, attend and grade his/her recital, and prepare and grade his/her comprehensive exam.
Special Problems Courses (MUS 692, 792, MED 692, 792)
Students cannot enroll in special problems courses without appropriate approval. Petitions requesting permission to enroll are available on the School of Music website at https://www.usm.edu/music/forms-0
Petitions must be submitted to the Coordinator of Graduate Studies by the end of SOAR open registration. Special Problems courses demand a minimum of 45 hours work for each hour of credit earned. It is expected that the result of any problem undertaken be available for faculty examination; copies of term papers, examinations, or compositions must be turned in to the Coordinator for this purpose.
A written comprehensive exam is required. The test will be prepared and graded by the student’s Graduate Advisory Committee; it will cover the area of the major field. Master’s comprehensive exams dates will be posted by the Coordinator of Graduate Studies in the summer of the ensuing Academic Year. Announcements are made approximately two (2) months prior to the exams. The dates will be in October (fall dates may vary), April, and July. The exact dates of the examinations are determined by the Coordinator of Graduate Studies and are publicized as soon as the University’s Academic Calendar is available.
Students must register for the exam two months in advance with the Coordinator of Graduate Studies. The Coordinator of Graduate Studies must receive the results of the comprehensive examination in time to notify the University Registrar and the Graduate Office (i.e., no later than the last day of general exams for presenting signed theses to the Graduate Office).
A student who fails the Comprehensive Examination may repeat the exam once; the test must be repeated within one year of the first comprehensive examination.