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Music Education, Ph.D.

School of Music

Apply your own areas of specialization while pursuing scholarly research and developing the knowledge and skills to effectively improve music teaching in schools and universities in our doctoral program.

Join a research-oriented degree program in collaboration with the USC College of Education designed for music students preparing to become music administrators, teachers and researchers able to think abstractly, generalize knowledge, carry on research and apply results to their areas of specialization. A dissertation is required.

Program Highlights

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    Publish and Speak

    Apply your work in a range of opportunities for scholarly publications, national presentations and funding applications.

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    Authentic Experiences

    Enjoy unique practicum opportunities and teaching experiences in our Music For Your Life community outreach programs.

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    In-Depth Study

    Study the philosophical and psychological foundations of music education and processes of teaching and learning music.

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    Distinguished School

    All USC music programs have the distinctive National Association of Schools of Music accreditation since 1969.

What You’ll Study

Courses include music education, music history, theory, educational statistics, qualitative inquiry methods and applied music instruction. Students will demonstrate a record of successful teaching in elementary or secondary schools and offer evidence of academic excellence and ongoing scholarly inquiry with the ability to conduct independent research.

Building Skills

Gain the professional and personal intelligence it takes to have a successful career.

  • Leadership

    Inspiring and guiding others to achieve common goals and reach their full potential


    Gathering and analyzing information to increase knowledge or solve problems

    Planning and Strategy

    Developing and implementing a comprehensive and effective approach to achieve specific goals

  • Teaching

    Foster learning by conveying knowledge, skills and concepts to students


    Working with others to achieve a common goal or objective


    Exchanging information and ideas through speaking, writing or other means of expression

Using your degree

Make your college experience the foundation for a successful future.

Learn how alumni use degrees with outcome data from Gamecock GradStats, a service of the University of South Carolina Career Center.

Potential Careers

  • Educator
  • Professor
  • Faculty
  • Researcher
  • Administrator

Job Titles of Alumni

  • Director of Institutional Assessment
  • Director of Bands
  • Choral Director
  • Orchestra Director
  • Instructor

Workplace Settings

  • Education

Employers of Alumni

  • Savannah College of Art and Design
  • Charleston County School District
  • Oklahoma Youth Orchestras
  • Claflin University