Can You Get a Degree In Music Online?

Music majorGetting your degree in music online is possible, but you’ll often find that these courses differ quite a bit from those you could take at a traditional college. When you enroll in a face-to-face music program, you have the chance to take music courses that let you play your chosen instrument and gain feedback from a professor. With online music programs, you usually narrow down your studies to an area of music education or another field, which may not require any actually playing.

Online Music Majors

Online music programs typically fall into one of two categories: music education or music appreciation. Designed for future teachers, music education programs are available at both the bachelor’s and master’s levels. These programs often focus more on teaching students how to work in a classroom and how to teach students notes, chords and other types of music terminology and ideas. Music appreciation courses are a good option for musicians. They discover the work that goes into producing a song or a piece of music and how to identify different elements of a song.

What Can You Do With a Music Degree?

When you earn a degree in music online, you can use that degree in a few different ways. Many private schools hire teachers with a music degree and the ability to sing or play more than one instruments, and those schools often don’t require that teachers have an advanced degree or specific teaching credentials. You can also use your degree to run your own studio and rent recording time to local and national artists. Some graduates may even use their degrees to find work with a major symphony, orchestra or another major music organization.

Can You Take Other Music Courses?

According to Carl Straumsheim of Inside HigherEd, the Berklee College of Music is the only music program in the country that has accreditation from an accrediting agency. Berklee launched its music business degree program in 2014. The school also offers a degree in music production. Designed for those who want to make a living playing music, the program requires that students use software to record, upload and edit their performances for course credit. Some for-profit schools also offer music programs, but those programs do not have accreditation from an organization recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.

How To Choose an Online College

Not all online programs are the same, which is why you should ask a few questions before signing up to get a degree in music online. One of the first questions you want to ask is about the graduation rate of the program and how many students graduate within the average four years. Most schools also keep track of job placement rates, which tells you how many students find work after school and how long it takes for those students to land jobs. Many students also find it helpful to ask about any discounts on music software needed for their courses, the type of courses available in the program and the credentials of the professors working in that music program.

Related Resource: Online Business Degrees

Musicians do not need a college degree to work as studio performers or professional performers, but going to college does give you a better understanding of music. If you don’t have much free time, you can get a degree in music online, but you’ll find that most programs focus on music appreciation or music education as opposed to performing music.