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Music Education

  • Roxanne Fairchild music education quote
  • Music Education student
  • Students of Music Ed student Matt Swanson created cigar box guitars in a hands-on project  at their University-area school.
  • UW Music Education student working with school children in the Yakima Valley in 2009.
  • Music Education students teaching Musico Grato, a visiting school group from Himi, Japan

Music education students at the University of Washington enjoy in-depth musical study with world-class artist-teachers with a range of strengths and interests. Recent visiting scholars and artists with the program include Srivani Jade (Seattle-based Indian musician), Pablo Liebana-Marin (University of Valencia, Spain), Ben Hunter (Seattle-based roots musician), Kedmon Mapana (University of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania), Shoji Kameda (Los Angeles-based Taiko musician, and online visits with music educators working locally as well as in Africa, the Americas, Asia, and Europe.


Students in the program embrace diversity, equity, and inclusion in principle and practice. They enjoy opportunities to study with world-renowned faculty, engage in supervised teaching in the Seattle area public schools, and conduct school bands, choirs, and orchestras throughout their course of study. Graduate students find themselves in advanced studies in music and pedagogy, and in courses across the university that lead to interdisciplinary understandings, and the PhD program offers training in research with tertiary-level teaching preparation for university positions. Students benefit from the Music Education program’s close relationship with UW Ethnomusicology, studying music of the world’s cultures as an integral part of the program. For well over 60 years, the UW Music Education program has continued its record of excellence, innovating new concepts, nimbly resonating with societal and cultural change, and sustaining timeless principles of music teaching and learning.

Degree Programs

Undergraduate degrees in Music Education prepare students to teach at the primary and secondary levels. At the graduate level, the School of Music offers both a Master of Arts and Doctor of Philosophy degree for individuals seeking advanced professional development or pursuing a career in higher education. Concentrations include choral and instrumental teaching/conducting, music for children, and numerous other areas of musical and educational study. 

Certification Programs

In addition to degree programs, the UW offers several ways to achieve teacher certification at the undergraduate level. Each of the programs listed leads to a teaching license in the State of Washington.

  • BM in Music Education, Instrumental or Vocal Emphasis
  • Post Baccalaureate (BM) Certification, Instrumental or Vocal Emphasis

Our Music Education FAQ answers many common questions about Certification Programs and Graduate Study.

Student Support

In addition to student support distributed by the University of Washington’s financial aid office, the School of Music distributes more than a half million dollars annually in merit- and need-based student support. Graduate teaching assistantships are highly competitive and are granted in all areas of study. 


For more information, contact

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