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Music Education

Outstanding Reputation

Augustana College has a reputation for preparing outstanding music educators.  Students participating in this vibrant program are drawn to the small class size and the individual attention they receive.  Graduates may benefit by a history of strong job placement, consistently finding positions in a variety of school settings.

The liberal arts tradition, in conjunction with a progressive music education curriculum, provides students with a broad base of knowledge and skills to become effective educators in contemporary school systems. Graduates are certified K-12 with endorsements in Middle School Music, High Choral and High School Instrumental., Although students select either an instrumental or choral music emphasis, they are encouraged to pursue both vocal and instrumental interests. The ensemble schedule at Augustana College allows students to perform in a variety of music ensembles which include a full symphony orchestra, a big-band jazz ensemble, four choirs, and two full bands.

What makes our music education program special?

  • Small Class Sizes: Class sizes are small, allowing for greater interaction with professors, ample teaching opportunities, and personal attention.


  • Faculty Interaction: Students speak convincingly about the relations they have with all faculty members. Classes and lessons are taught only by faculty members, not graduate assistants.


  • Ensemble Opportunities: Students are able and encouraged to participate in multiple ensembles.


  • Job Placement: 100% of the graduates from the class of 2005 and 2006 are currently teaching or working in a music position of their choice. Because the music education faculty teaches the music method classes, supervises all student teachers, and advise each student, they provide guidance and personalized recommendations that are essential in securing the right teaching position for graduates.


  • 4 Year Program of Study: The music education program is designed to be completed in four years. Depending upon the kinds of courses students complete in high school, the program sequence can be completed within that period.


  • Strong Academic Reputation: Augustana College provides its students with a first-rate education in the liberal arts and sciences from a renowned faculty of scholar-teachers. This reputation of academic distinction is paramount when applying for a job in teaching and for admission to graduate schools.


  • Department Admission and Major Declaration: Upon the successful completion first year requirements, students typically apply for admittance to the music education program during their sophomore year.
  • Student Advising: A strong mentoring program places perspective music education students in a music advising group where they are paired with a music education major (peer mentor) and a music education faculty member. Students work closely with their music education advisor as they select courses, choose their major, and prepare for their college career. Students appreciate the support they are given as they determine their own path for the future.


  • Outstanding Music Education Faculty: The music education faculty has extensive experience in all facets of public school teaching, having tenure in both elementary and secondary music, as well as serving as music supervisors in outstanding music programs. The faculty remains active as conductors, performers, clinicians, and conference presenters nationwide.


  • MENC (National Association for Musical Education) : Augustana has one of the most active student-run chapters of CMENC in Illinois. Students attend the Illinois State Music convention as well as other national conventions. Augustana College was awarded the 2006 Illinois State Music Association Collegiate Chapter Award for Program Excellence and hosted the Illinois Collegiate Music Educators Conference in 2006 and 2007.


  • Excellent Preparation: Music education students have tremendous opportunities to gain teaching experience in many ways. Students are encouraged to teach privately and are able to interact with children in the quad cities schools through clinics, residencies, and the Music in Ours Schools Month program. Students currently teach at the Davenport Montessori School and work with West Music in instrumental recruitment. A unique element of our program preparation is that students conduct a visiting middle school ensemble and an Augustana College ensemble.


  • The Carl B. Nelson Music Education Scholars: An incoming first-year student who shows professional promise and motivation-as demonstrated through an audition and faculty interview-may be eligible to receive the Carl B. Nelson Music Education Scholarship. This unique award is renewable annually for four years. This scholarship is made possible by an endowment from Carl B. Nelson, a 1939 graduate of Augustana and leader in music education.