List of Music Schools: 20 Largest Music Schools in the U.S.

Music schools prepare students for performing and teaching careers. When selecting a music school, a student may consider multiple factors including performance opportunities, reputation and accomplishments of the instructors, concentration and specialization options, and fellowship opportunities.

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Institutions, both public and private, offer degree programs in music with multiple concentration or specialization options. There are also master's and doctoral degree programs in music.

Find schools that offer these popular programs

  • Jazz
  • Music Composition and Theory
  • Music History and Literature
  • Music Merchandising and Management
  • Music Pedagogy
  • Music Performing
  • Musical Conducting
  • Musicology and Ethnomusicology
  • Piano and Organ
  • Stringed Instruments
  • Voice and Opera

20 Largest Music Schools

This table includes the twenty largest music schools.

College/University Location Institution Type Degrees Offered Tuition (2015-2016)*
Houston Community College Houston, TX 2-year, Public Certificate, Associate's $3,360 (in-state)
Arizona State University Tempe, AZ 4-year, Public Bachelor's, Master's $10,158 (in-state), $10,610 (graduate)
Indiana University - Bloomington Bloomington, IN 4-year, Public Bachelor's, Master's, Doctorare, Postgraduate Certificate $10,388 (in-state), $8,442 (graduate)
Florida International University Miami, FL 4-year, Public Bachelor's, Master's $6,556 (in-state), $8,912 (graduate)
Florida State University Tallahassee, FL 4-year, Public Bachelor's, Master's $6,507 (in-state), $9,684 (graduate)
Austin Community College District Austin, TX 2-year, Public Associate's $9,210 (in-state)
California State University - Northridge Northridge, CA 4-year, Public Bachelor's, Master's $6,569 (in-state), $6,738 (graduate)
Brigham Young University - Idaho Rexburg, ID 4-year, Private Bachelor's $3,830 (in-state)
East Los Angeles College Monterey Park, CA 2-year, Public Associate's $1,220 (in-state)
College of Southern Nevada Las Vegas, NV 4-year, Public Associate's $2,805 (in-state)
Georgia State University Atlanta, GA 4-year, Public Bachelor's, Master's $8,974 (in-state), $6,876 (graduate)
California State University - Fullerton Fullerton, CA 4-year, Public Bachelor's, Master's $6,437 (in-state), $6,738 (graduate)
Boston University Boston, MA 4-year, Private Bachelor's, Master's, Doctorate $48,436, $47,422 (graduate)
Colorado State University - Fort Collins Fort Collins, CO 4-year, Public Bachelor's, Master's $,10,558 (in-state), $9,348 (graduate)
California State University - Long Beach Long Beach, CA 4-year, Public Bachelor's, Master's $6,452 (in-state), $6,738 (graduate)
Florida Atlantic University Boca Raton, FL 4-year, Public Bachelor's, Master's $4,831 (in-state), $5,467 (graduate)
Brigham Young University - Provo Provo, UT 4-year, Private Bachelor's, Master's $5,150, $6,500 (graduate)
George Mason University Fairfax, VA 4-year, Public Bachelor's, Master's $10,952 (in-state), $10,328 (graduate)
College of Dupage Glen Ellyn, IL 2-year, Public Associate's $10,885 (in-state)
Musician's Institute Hollywood, CA 4-year, Private Certificate, Associate's, Bachelor's $15,990-$31,980 (Certificate), $47,970 (Associate's), $78,030-$90,720 (Bachelor's)**

Source: *NCES, ** School website 2017

School Selection Criteria

Students should seek out a school that offers the concentration they prefer. Some specializations might include jazz studies, music therapy, music theory, history, composition, instrumental conduction, music education or musicology. Students interested in teaching, performing, or both should select a program that caters to their particular career goal. They should also keep the following in mind:

  • Students interested in performance may seek out programs that have opportunities in jazz bands, chamber groups, opera theatre productions, marching bands and various sports pep bands.
  • It may be beneficial to select a school with well accomplished, reputable music instructors.
  • Many schools offer combined music programs which teach students both to perform and to be instructors.
  • Students might consider a program with access to local musical venues for student performances.

Students wanting to study music should try to have a preferred concentration in mind and seek out a school that will help them to achieve their long-term goals. Factors, such as available programs, opportunities, and instructors, can be important in the search for the right institution.

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