A Comprehensive Program
The Bachelor of Music Education degree is a professional degree
program. Substantial training in music combines with professional
music education study and collaboration with the GVSU College of
Education. The program enables students to meet certification
requirements for teaching music in Michigan elementary and public
schools. The program has two tracks, vocal/choral and instrumental,
both of which result in K-12 Music Certification.
The Core Music Program
Musical training at GVSU emphasizes solo and ensemble performance
for all students. The core program also includes music theory, aural
perception, music history, and keyboard musicianship courses.
Choral teaching method experiences are acquired in class and in
observation and tutoring of public school students. In addition to
basic methods, students in the vocal/choral emphasis are afforded the
unusual opportunity to work with developing singers from local public
schools as part of a newly created course, "Teaching the
Instrumental music education students are given extensive training in
an eight-semester sequence of voice and brass, woodwind, string,
percussion instruments. Skills are further developed in the conducting
class lab band/orchestra.
Beyond general teaching methods, B.M.E. instrumental students study
the tenets of marching band techniques both in the classroom and on
An intensive keyboard musicianship curriculum and
state-of-the-art piano lab enable students with all entering keyboard
backgrounds to develop functional keyboard skills essential for music
teaching success. Private study is encouraged and offered beyond the
four-semester sequence of group study.
Students receive extensive field experience in a one-year
practicum, consisting of one semester of half-day teacher assisting
and one semester of full-day student teaching. Classes and seminars
taken concurrently with the practicum allow students to continually
identify and address issues crucial to effective music teaching.
A collegiate chapter of the National Association for Music
Education (NAfME) is an active student organization in the Music
Department. Service work, professional development, and music
education advocacy are the group's primary missions.
Questions about the Music Education program at Grand Valley State
University can be directed to: Charles Norris, Coordinator of Music
Education, at (616) 331-3385 or e-mail [email protected] and Beth Gibbs,
Associate Professor of Music Education, at (616) 331-2837 or e-mail [email protected].
Students interested in a second area of certification are
encouraged to contact the CLAS
Advising Center (616-331-8585). An additional teachable minor
would require up to one year of extra course work in that area.
College of Education requirements would count for both teachable
areas, with pre-service teaching distributed between certification areas.
Grand Valley State University is an accredited institutional
member of the National Association of Schools of Music.
In addition to formal admission to Grand Valley, each applicant
wanting to major or minor in music is required to arrange for a
personal audition with the music department. When considerable
geographical distance or extreme hardship prevents a personal
audition, the applicant may, with the permission of the department,
submit an audio recording of an appropriate performance. Entering
first-year students and transfer students will be required to take a
theory placement exam on audition day. A student with two or more
years of piano experience will also be required to take a keyboard
musicianship placement exam. Audition appointments should be made at
least one month in advance. Recommended audition repertoire and an
application can be found at www.gvsu.edu/music/.
Catalog: Bachelor of Music Education Student
Learning Outcomes: Music, B.M.E. Apply