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Music Schools in New Jersey with Program Options

Jul 31, 2019

New Jersey has about two dozen schools that offer music programs. Learn about the degree programs, tuition info and program options for the ten largest 4-year schools to make an informed education decision.

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Essential Information

Students can find undergraduate programs with concentrations in jazz studies, composition, music theatre, classical instruments, voice, music education and more. Many schools also offer graduate programs in music. Some universities require students to audition before they are admitted into a music program. Most music performance programs include recitals, exhibitions, and other performance opportunities throughout students' education. The majority of the following programs meet state standards for providing graduates with teaching certification eligibility.

Individuals interested in studying music in New Jersey have about two dozen public and private not-for-profit schools to choose from. Following are overviews of the ten largest, 4-year public and private not-for-profit schools in New Jersey that offer music programs, as well as a table that compares program offerings and tuition info at a glance.


The College of New Jersey

Located in Ewing, The College of New Jersey provides students with a Bachelor of Arts program in music that offers interdisciplinary training and allows them to blend their musical interests with a liberal arts education. Required courses include music theory, cultural and historical studies, and music electives. Those interested in more specialized musical training can pursue a Bachelor of Music in Performance and select a keyboard, vocal or instrumental track.

The college's bachelor's program in music education offers concentrations in instrumental music, keyboard, and vocals. Graduates are eligible to sit for state and national teacher certification examinations.

Kean University

Located in Union, Kean University offers a bachelor's program in music that encompasses a liberal arts education. Students have the opportunity to complete electives from other majors to create a double major. Core music courses include sight, singing, and ear training; music theory; classical piano; and foundations of music. Of the 124 credits required, 36-38 are taken from subjects outside the major. A passing grade of 'C' is needed in all major courses.

Kean also offers a 146-credit music education bachelor's program, and students can select a piano, voice or instrumental concentration. Student teaching and field experiences are part of the curriculum; graduates can pursue teaching certification.

Monmouth University

Located in West Long Branch, Monmouth University offers bachelor's programs in music and music education. Students take private lessons in woodwinds, voice, percussion, guitar, brass or piano. The music program also has an optional music industry concentration that focuses on areas such as publishing, marketing, recording, talent acquisition, media relations, concert production and merchandising.

Students in the music education bachelor's program can pursue endorsements in elementary education, K-12 education or P-3 and teachers of students with disabilities. A master's program in teaching with initial certification in art or music is available as well.

Montclair State University

Montclair State University offers undergraduate and graduate degree programs in music. It offers a bachelor's program in music with concentrations in jazz studies, music performance, music theory/composition, and music education. Students majoring in jazz studies have access to nearby New York City's vibrant music scene, while students in the music performance program are taught by faculty who are veteran concert stage performers. The music education program leads to teacher certification at the P-12 levels. Students may also pursue a bachelor's degree in music therapy that prepares them for board certification.

The school has master's degree programs in music with concentrations in performance, theory/composition, music education, and music therapy. The master's program in music education is available for students who already hold teaching certification.

Talented, young musicians who are interested in honing their musical skills can enroll in a post-baccalaureate Artist's Diploma program or a 1-year Performer's Certificate program. These conservatory-style programs offer intensive training and are generally open only to musicians with considerable professional experience.

New Jersey City University

Located in Jersey City, New Jersey City University has undergraduate and graduate programs in music-related fields. Students may choose from undergraduate programs in music business, music performance and music; a teaching certification track is available as well. Performance students can further specialize in piano, classical voice, jazz or classical instrumental.

The university's Master of Music program in performance offers specializations in classical instrumental, classical vocals, jazz or multiple woodwinds. Students can pursue a master's degree in music education if they are certified to teach at the K-12 levels. The university hosts various music and performance series that allow students to listen to various musical genres and styles. There are also student and faculty recitals throughout the year.

Princeton University

Princeton University offers undergraduate and graduate degree programs that focus on Western and non-Western music. The bachelor's program covers a range of subjects, allowing students to develop their musical interests. Princeton also offers a certificate in musical performance program to qualified students who want to prepare for professional study while pursuing a liberal arts education.

The certificate in jazz studies program covers the cultural legacy and performance practices of jazz. The university's doctoral program in music lets students focus on composition or musicology. Students may also audition to perform with various ensembles and groups on campus, including jazz groups, orchestras, choruses and acappella singing groups.

Ramapo College of New Jersey

Ramapo College in Mahwah offers a bachelor's program in music with concentrations in music industry, music performance, music production, and music studies. This program focuses on various forms of contemporary music and digital music technologies. Students may also learn to appreciate American and Western art music, as well as music from other parts of the world. Concentrations offer opportunities for internships, performance, and independent projects. The music industry track focuses on the evolving dynamics surrounding the relationship of music, business, and technology, while the music studies track centers around academic writing about music.

Rowan University

Located in Glassboro, Rowan University offers bachelor's programs in music, composition, jazz, and performance. The Bachelor of Arts in Music program is designed for students who are interested in music, but who are seeking careers outside of teaching or performance. The bachelor's degree in music composition focuses on creativity and theory and helps students develop their style, approach, and point-of-view. Jazz students have various opportunities to perform in small and large ensembles that are taught by professional faculty and musicians. Performance students receive private instruction in their chosen instrument or individual vocal training.

The school also has a Master of Music in Performance program with concentrations in conducting, jazz and composition. Students can gain advanced career training or prepare for future doctoral studies at another institution.

Rutgers University - New Brunswick

This public university in New Brunswick offers undergraduate and graduate degree programs in music that allow students to specialize in areas such as orchestral instruments, voice, composition, jazz studies, music education, and keyboard. Undergraduates may pursue a Bachelor of Arts degree in music or they may enroll in a Bachelor of Music degree program, which allows them to focus on music education, performance, music composition or jazz. Students must audition as part of the admissions process.

The university also offers several graduate diploma and degree programs which allow individuals to gain advanced training in a selected music specialization. In addition to Master of Arts degrees, students can pursue a Master of Music or Doctor of Musical Arts degree in music education, collaborative piano, performance or conducting. A master's degree in jazz studies is also available. The goal of these programs is to develop professional musicians who have a strong historical and theoretical understanding of music. Graduate students also have access to the Rutgers Concert Bureau, which arranges concert performances for them.

William Paterson University of New Jersey

William Paterson University of New Jersey in Wayne has a Bachelor of Music with concentrations in performance, music education, jazz/classical performance, music management, sound engineering arts, and jazz studies. The performance concentration is geared toward singers and instrumentalists who are pursuing classical performance careers. Private lessons are included, and students perform in large and small ensembles. The jazz studies concentration focuses on small group concerts. Students can also pursue a Bachelor of Arts in Music and select an emphasis in popular music. The university has Master of Music programs in jazz studies, music management, and music education as well.

School Comparison: At a Glance

School Name School Type and Setting Music Programs Offered Undergraduate Tuition & Fees (2018-2019)*
The College of New Jersey 4-year, public; small city Bachelor of Arts in Music,
Bachelor of Music in Performance,
Bachelor of Music in Music Education
$16,551 in-state
$28,266 out-of-state
Kean University 4-year, public; small city Bachelor of Arts in Music,
Bachelor of Arts in Music Education
$12,348 in-state
$19,383 out-of-state
Monmouth University 4-year, private not-for-profit; large suburb Bachelor of Arts in Music,
Bachelor of Arts in Music and Education,
Master of Arts in Teaching - Initial Certification in Art or Music
$38,138
Montclair State University 4-year, public; large suburb Bachelor of Music,
Bachelor of Arts in Music Therapy,
Bachelor of Fine Arts in Musical Theatre,
Master of Arts in Music,
Artist's Diploma,
Performer's Certificate
$12,790 in-state
$20,578 out-of-state
New Jersey City University 4-year, public; large suburb Bachelor of Arts in Music,
Bachelor of Arts in Music Business,
Bachelor of Arts in Music Theatre,
Bachelor of Arts in Music Performance,
Bachelor of Arts in Music with Teaching Certification,
Master of Arts in Music Education,
Master of Music in Performance
$12,052 in-state
$21,574 out-of-state
Princeton University 4-year, private not-for-profit; large suburb Bachelor of Arts in Music,
Certificate in Musical Performance,
Certificate in Jazz Studies,
Doctor of Philosophy in Music
$50,340
Ramapo College of New Jersey 4-year, public; large suburb Bachelor of Arts in Music $14,374 in-state
$23,715 out-of-state
Rowan University 4-year, public; large suburb Bachelor of Arts in Music,
Bachelor of Music in Composition,
Bachelor of Music in Jazz,
Bachelor of Music in Performance,
Master of Music Performance
$13,697 in-state
$22,339 out-of-state
Rutgers University - New Brunswick 4-year, public; large suburb Bachelor of Arts in Music,
Bachelor of Music,
Master of Arts in Composition,
Master of Arts in Theory,
Master of Arts in Musicology,
Master of Music,
Doctor of Musical Arts,
Artist Diploma in Performance,
Artist Diploma in Collaborative Piano,
Doctor of Philosophy in Composition/Theory,
Doctor of Philosophy in Musicology/Music Theory
$14,974 in-state
$31,282 out-of-state
William Paterson University of New Jersey 4-year, public; small city Bachelor of Music,
Bachelor of Arts in Music,
Master of Music
$13,060 in-state
$21,260 out-of-state

Source: *NCES College Navigator.

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