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Music Teaching Jobs: What You Need to Know

Music teaching jobs let you do what you love, all the while earning you a living. Here's an in depth look at this line of work.

Many people learn to play an instrument as a child or later in life and this can be a fun hobby. However it is also possible to use musical training and the ability to play one or more instruments in finding a career. There are a variety of ways this can be done, with one of the options being music teaching jobs. For those with an interest in music this can be a way to pass on your love of music, and there are a few things to know for those that are interested in pursuing a career as a music teacher.

Training Required

To be able to apply for music teaching jobs in most states, it is generally a requirement to have successfully completed at least a bachelor’s degree. Most people interested in music will generally study a bachelor’s in a music-related subject, and there are a few options for this such as general music or voice. Many colleges around the country run these types of courses and there is a variety of choice as to where to study. For those looking to pursue a career as a music teacher, it is also generally a good idea to get teacher training qualifications. One of the options for this is to follow on from a bachelor’s in music by studying for a master’s degree in education. A variety of colleges run these courses with the All Education Schools website having details of many of these.

Most state also requires teachers to be licensed and this means passing the state teacher certification exam. The actual requirements for this can vary from state to state and contacting the local Department of Education is the best way to find the details required for this.

Working in Schools

Working as a music teacher entails a variety of tasks and generally the more rounded your music training and education has been the more able you will be to carry these out. Typical tasks can involve directly teaching student’s general music education such as scales, types of musical instruments, singing voice styles and musical notation. This can include standard lessons, as well as working with instruments. While larger schools may have their own dedicated music classroom, in smaller schools a music teacher will more likely move from room to room to teach students. In some cases music teacher jobs may involve more than one school, with the teacher traveling around these as required to provide music classes to the students.

Working as a Private Music Teacher

Individuals trained to teach music also have the option of providing private lessons. This can be generally be done with regard to a particular instrument such as piano or guitar, and generally involves one-to-one lesson with students that are interested in learning to play. Teachers can do this as a way of supplementing their income, and weekend or summer teaching during school break, are options to consider for those that want to do this.

Organizations to Join

There are a few organizations that can be joined for those entering the field of music teaching. The National Association for Music Educators is one of these, with another being the Music Teachers National Association. Both these organizations offer members a range of benefits, such as continuing education programs, access to up-to-date teaching literature, and access to a music teaching community. For those professionally working in music teaching jobs, it can be a good idea to join these.


Like most occupations, the salary for working in music teaching jobs will vary depending on a few factors such as the type of school, experience and qualifications. However the Bureau for Labor Statistics indicates that the average salary for music teachers is around the $50,000 mark. For the very top jobs this can rise to around $80,000 and greater. As indicated above music teachers have the option of supplementing their income by providing private lessons and this can bring in additional salary for those that choose to do this.

A career in education is something that many people consider, and this is a possibility for those with a musical background. There are a few steps required in gaining the required qualifications for music teaching jobs. The information above provides details of some of the things that an individual needs to know to become involved in this occupation.

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