K-12 Contemporary Teaching Practice

Master of Music Degree

Today’s music educators face exciting and challenging times as students become more diverse, embrace a wider variety of musical styles, and engage with music in their own in sophisticated ways. The K-12 Contemporary Teaching Practice Master’s Degree offers a new vision of music education in step with this dynamic new landscape. This innovative degree equips educators to engage with students along diverse musical pathways that are personally relevant and culturally meaningful for today’s students, with a special emphasis on urban settings.

The degree provides a credential path for graduate students who wish to teach in public or private schools in California and other states. Students move through the intensive 12-month curriculum as an intimate cohort, providing reflection, feedback, and support for each other. Alongside traditional models of music pedagogy, leading-edge coursework explores the sociocultural reality of music in the lives of today’s children and youth, composition and improvisation as provocative platforms for creativity, informal learning models for large and small ensemble contexts, and community and entrepreneurial engagement beyond the classroom.

Graduates of the program will leave with the tools to lead a choir or orchestra in the morning, a rock band or acapella group in the afternoon, and coach songwriters on an ipad in the evening. But beyond this broad scope of contemporary music teaching and learning proficiencies, graduates will leave with a rich understanding of the contemporary music education landscape and a personal vision of their place in it.

all USC Thornton faculty