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Music Education (PhD)

The Doctor of Philosophy curriculum in music education prepares students for careers as teachers in higher education. A main purpose is to develop skilled and knowledgeable professionals who will challenge the present and enrich the future with significant contributions to the field through teaching, research and service. Acceptance into the doctoral program is competitive. A prospective doctoral student in music education is required to have completed appropriate undergraduate and master’s degrees in music or their equivalent at institutions of recognized standing.

Also, an applicant must provide evidence of excellence in teaching and musicianship demonstrated during at least three years of successful, full-time contractual K-12 music teaching. Applicants to the program leading to the doctor of philosophy must present necessary credentials for evaluation of previous training and experience to the School of Music. These include transcripts showing at least a 3.0 grade point average in a minimum of 28 hours in liberal arts studies.

Program Application Requirements

Resume/CV, Statement of Purpose, 3 Letters of recommendation, Supplemental Application / Portfolio

Additional Application Information

Any recordings or videos on disc submitted for your admissions file will be held no more than one year. If you would like such materials to be returned to you, please provide a self addressed, stamped envelope.

Program Application Test Requirements

The following items must be submitted directly to the director of graduate studies in music: 1. An essay describing and discussing your training, experiences, present interests and career aspirations in the field of music education. 2. A current résumé. 3. A video recording of teaching, preferably a K-12 music class or rehearsal. Please submit a detailed lesson plan for each class or rehearsal presented on your video of teaching. The video recording container should clearly indicate your name, instrument and degree program for which you are applying. Recordings should have been made within the six months prior to the submission of the application. Video recordings must be of high quality. The preferable format is DVD, and the disc should clearly indicate that it is a DVD format. Applicants should review the video recording in its entirety to ensure audio, visual and technical clarity before mailing. When the application for music education is complete, it will be reviewed by the music education faculty. If this review is favorable, a representative of the music education faculty will contact the applicant to schedule an entrance interview and possible audition. Applicants who do not meet all of the criteria for regular admission to the Ph.D. degree program may be granted a provisional admission subject to the satisfactory completion of certain specified courses or the attainment of a specified grade point average within a semester’s work.

Application Deadlines

Fall Deadline

March 1

Spring Deadline

January 1

Summer Deadline


English Proficiency Requirements

All applicants whose first language is not English must provide proof of English language proficiency. WVU accepts either the TOEFL or the IELTS for this purpose. Learn more about our English language proficiency requirements.

Accreditation Information

WVU is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

The School of Music and its programs are fully accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music. The Music Education program is fully accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation and the West Virginia Department of Education.

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