Master of Music Education Overview

The Master of Music Education program is designed to meet the needs and interests of individuals who already hold teaching licensure in Illinois or other states and who seek to continue their careers as public school music educators. It is also possible to structure a program of studies suitable for individuals seeking careers in education-related fields or as a step toward eventual college teaching.

The Master of Music Education program is offered in three formats: an academic year MME; a summers-only option; as well as an MME with licensure program that makes it possible to complete all requirements for music teaching in the state of Illinois during graduate work. Master’s students enroll in a diverse array of courses in music education and music study as well as related offerings in the College of Education.  

Prior teaching experience is not required for admission to the MME, but we strongly recommend at least one to three years of teaching prior to beginning a master’s program as a foundation for meaningful and relevant graduate study in the field.

Individuals interested in obtaining teacher licensure in music should consult the guidelines for the MME plus Licensure program.

For further information about the Master of Music Education degree, please contact Dr. Donna Gallo

Admission to the Master of Music Education (M.M.E.)

Entrance requirements for admission into the M.M.E. degree program include:

  1. An undergraduate degree in music education from an accredited institution;
  2. An overall grade point average for the last 60 credit hours of undergraduate work of at least 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale). The grade average for Music Education and Education courses, when averaged separately, must also be at least 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale).
  3. Submission of a personal statement discussing your professional aspirations and reasons for pursuing graduate study in music education at the University of Illinois. This statement will also be used to evaluate your writing ability.
  4. Completion of a personal interview with the M.M.E. advisors, Dr. Donna Gallo or Dr. Adam Kruse, to be scheduled by phone or in person after the deadline for MME applications and after all admission materials are received.
  5. Letters of recommendation from three individuals who can speak to the applicant’s musicianship, ability to undertake graduate study, and teaching ability or potential.
    • For applicants with public school teaching experience, these letters should include recommendations from principals or supervisors who can speak to the applicant’s quality of teaching, and letters from former professors who can speak to the quality of the applicant’s musicianship and potential for success in rigorous graduate study. For applicants wishing to be considered for teaching assistantships, at least one of the references should speak directly to the applicant’s potential for engaging in university-level teaching duties.
    • For applicants without public school teaching experience, letters should include recommendations from an undergraduate music education professor, an applied or ensemble music professor, and individuals who can speak to the applicant’s potential for success in rigorous graduate study.

Please note that the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) is not required for application to the M.M.E., nor do M.M.E. students take placement exams in music theory or music history.

Music educators who already have teacher licensure in Illinois or another state may complete the MME degree in one of two formats: the academic year program and the summers-only program.

Time to Degree Completion of the MME

The Graduate College allows MME students a maximum of five years from the date of initial enrollment in graduate school at U of I to complete degree requirements.

Capstone Requirements for the MME

Two options are available for MME students in the academic year program, the MME Thesis, MUS 599 (4 credits) or the MME Capstone Projects and Capstone Project Synthesis, MUS 569 (2 credits).

Students in the Summers-Only MME complete the MME Capstone Projects and Capstone Project Synthesis, MUS 569 (2 credits).

The Graduate College, Tuition, and Financial Aid

For more information about graduate student financial aid, please visit the University of Illinois Graduate College website and click on the Funding and Fellowships tab: .

The Graduate College and the School of Music have a commitment to improving educational access through supporting traditionally underrepresented communities. Visit the Graduate College Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion page for more information about programming and initiatives:

Tuition information is available through the Registrar: The Illinois Cost Calculator can also be used to estimate tuition costs: