10 Amazing Music Education Colleges in the US (2019 Edition)

Boston University School of Music (Boston, MA)

Parents and students love the city of Boston, and for good reason.

It’s the most education friendly big city in the United States – there are 52 colleges in the Boston metro area.

Inside Boston is one of the best music education programs in the US, Boston University’s School of Music.

BU’s job placement rate upon graduation according to their site is 100%.

This is a small program, with only about 50-60 education majors across all programs (undergraduate, master’s, and doctoral level).

One unique aspect of this program is the joint BM/MM degree. In this program, students can obtain both an undergraduate as well as a Master’s degree in just 5 years.

Students in the program work closely with Boston Public Schools, participating and observing various classes.

Vandercook College of Music (Chicago, IL)

A college dedicated completely to music education, Vandercook is a rare gem in the world of music, as it is the only independent institution in the country solely focused on training music teachers.

Boasting a Bachelor’s degree offering as well as Master’s degree track, Vandercook is equally good for the undergraduate or graduate student seeking a major in music education.

The school is among the most important institutions in the world for music education; founded 110 years in 1909, the school currently has 3,500 living alumni teaching throughout the world.

Vandercook is an active presence in the Midwest Clinic, one of the premiere music education conferences in the world.

St. Olaf College (Northfield, MN)

photo by Webmoof via Wikimedia Commons

What we note about St. Olaf is the positive environment as well as opportunity of students inside the program.

Many students who want the best of a liberal arts education combined with practicum in music education come to St. Olaf.

There is a particularly strong emphasis on choral music at this school. Anton Armstrong, conductor of the St. Olaf Choir, directs both voice majors as well as music education majors in his ensemble that has toured worldwide.

One-third of all music majors throughout the entire St. Olaf College in the school participate in the school’s music programs. Few schools have such a strong music culture throughout one institution.

OCTOBER 2019 edit: St. Olaf was recently named one of the 10 best “hidden gem” liberal arts colleges in the country!

University of Texas at Austin (Austin, TX)

One-third of the students in the UT-Austin undergraduate curriculum study Music Education at this program, one of the eminent institutions of its kind in the US.

Admission to the Teacher Certification is especially selective at UT Austin. Requirements include demonstrating capability in theory, conducting, performance.

The faculty at UT Austin is particularly notable. Judith Jellison, Professor of Music and Human Learning at UT Austin, is one of the leading music educators in the US. As a major education researcher in the US, her work has centered around educating children with inclusive music practices.

Outside of education, UT-Austin is a remarkable music school and, along with Rice and UNT, a powerhouse of music in Texas.

In 2008, Sarah and Ernest Butler donated $55m to UT-Austin, the largest such gift in public music college history in the US.


  1. Adam Jonkman March 12, 2019
  2. Stephen Zdzinski March 14, 2019
  3. Frances Nicholson March 16, 2019

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