Train to get the next generation on key: You’ll do that here.

A vocal performance music education degree will prepare you for a career teaching and state certification for K-12 general and vocal music education. And, with an emphasis in general education, liberal arts, experiential learning, and leadership, we know you’ll be ready. 

What You’ll Do  

As a vocal music education major at Southeast, you will study the pedagogy, techniques, literature of applied voice, as well as music theory and music history. 

  • Attend classes on Southeast’s River Campus, a campus solely dedicated to the arts. 
  • Gain hands-on experience working in K-12 classrooms during your program.
  • Be prepared for your career as Southeast’s program has one of the highest required field hour experiences in the state.
  • Interact with nationally recognized performing artists and educators. 
  • Study in a program that is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music. 

What Can You Do with a Vocal Music Education Degree?

Your education is just one piece to launching an extraordinary career. Once you’ve mastered the material, you still have to find the job you want, make the right connections, sell your knowledge and experience—and if all this is giving you anxiety, don’t panic. SEMO’s Career Services office is here to help you with the next step. They’ll provide the expertise and support you need, so you’re landing your dream job in no time. 

Graduate School Opportunities of Recent Graduates

  • Illinois State University
  • Indiana University
  • Longy School of Music
  • University of Florida
  • University of Kansas
  • University of Louisville
  • University of Northern Colorado
  • University of South Florida
  • Washington University

Internship Opportunities of Recent Graduates

  • Harrow International School, Beijing, China
  • Paducah (KY) Symphony
  • St. Louis Symphony
  • Youth Excellence on StageMiddle East

Orchestra Position Opportunities of Recent Graduates

  • Kansas City Symphony
  • Paducah (KY) Symphony
  • St. Louis Philharmonic Orchestra and Symphony Chorus
  • Memphis Symphony

Teaching Position Opportunities of Recent Graduates

  • Belt Valley Public Schools (MT)
  • Perish Episcopal School, Dallas, TX
  • Santa Fe (NM) Public Schools
  • Cape Girardeau, Jackson, Sikeston, Fredricktown, Perryville, St.Louis, O’Fallon, and Columbia (MO) Public Schools and theFt.Zumwalt School District (MO)

Teacher Certification

Upon completion of Southeast’s Teacher Preparation Program an individual is eligible to be recommended for a Missouri Teaching Certificate in K-12 vocal music if the student has the following:

  1. A final 3.0 GPA in both pedagogy and content coursework.
  2. A passing score on the appropriate licensure exam(s) as required by the Missouri
    Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.
  3. A passing score on the Teacher Candidate Instrument of the Missouri Educator Evaluation
  4. MSHP/FBI background clearance from no earlier than one year prior to the date of the application for  certification.
A student may also apply for dual certification in the state of Missouri.

Music Education - Vocal Degree Map

Explore the courses you'll need to complete your degree.

Outcomes & Careers

  • $65k

    High School Teacher

    According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual salary for a high school teacher is $65,220. 

  • $85k

    Music Professor

    According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the mean annual salary for a music professor is $84,380. 

  • $62k

    Music Director

    According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual salary for a music director is $62,590. 

What You'll Study

Degree Map

The vocal performance music education curriculum includes core coursework to prepare you for a career teaching music. You’ll complete a minimum of 120 credit hours to complete this degree, including the general education requirements and at least 39 senior division hours.

Professional Education Requirements: 40 Hours

  • EF400 Seminar in Educational Issues for Student Teachers (1)
  • EX390 Psych & Education of the Exceptional Child (3)
  • ME222 Principles of Teaching Music (3)
  • ME270 Field Experience Block II (1)
  • ME370 Field Experience Block III (1)
  • ME371 Techniques of Teaching General Music: Elementary and Secondary (3)
  • SE465 Student Teaching (12)
  • PY222 Development of the Adolescent (3)
  • SE307 Content Literacy Methods (3)
  • SE350 Pedagogy I: Principles of Effective Teaching in Middle and Secondary Schools (3)
  • SE365 Pedagogy II: Secondary School (4)
  • SE385 Pedagogy III: Advanced Methods of Middle and Secondary Teaching (3)

A minimum grade of "C" is required in each professional education course.

Required Courses: 61 credit hours

  • ME001 Senior Recital (0)
  • ME450 Synthesis of Music Education Methods (2)
  • ME373 Choral Techniques: Elementary & Secondary (3)
  • ME443 Choral Literature (2)
  • MH181 The World of Music (3)
  • MH251 History & Literature of Music to 1800 (3)
  • MH252 Evolution of Musical Style Since 1800 (3)
  • MM001 Aural Skills Entry Level Proficiency (0)
  • MM002 Aural Skills Exit Level Proficiency (0)
  • MM100 Music Fundamentals (3)
  • MM102 Intermediate Harmony & Melody (3)
  • MM105 Aural Skills I (1)
  • MM106 Aural Skills II (1)
  • MM203 Advanced Harmony, Melody, and Form (3)
  • MM204 Music Theory through Composition, Arranging, and Orchestration (3)
  • MM207 Aural Skills III (1)
  • MM208 Aural Skills IV (1)
  • MP1xx Applied Music (1+1)
  • MP2xx Applied Music (1+1)
  • MP211 Applied Piano (1)
  • MP3xx Applied Music (2+2)
  • MP4xx Applied Music (1)
  • MU001 Piano Proficiency (0)
  • MU002 Sophomore Review (0)
  • MU110 Recitals & Concerts (seven semesters) (0)
  • MU123 Singer’s Diction (1)
  • MU124Singer’s Diction II (1)
  • MU151 Functional Piano I (1)
  • MU152 Functional Piano II (1)
  • MU253 Functional Piano III (1)
  • MU254 Functional Piano IV (1)
  • MU341 Basic Conducting (2)
  • MU343 Choral Conducting and Literature(2)
  • MU3xx Choral Ensemble (7)
  • MU424 Vocal Pedagogy (2)

*Refer to Student Handbook for ensemble options

“Critical Courses” are italicized and bold. Data shows that students who have completed this course in the first two years and have earned the noted grade are most likely to complete this program of study.

Some requirements may be fulfilled by coursework in major program.

  • Social and Behavioral Sciences – 6 hours
  • Constitution Requirement – 3 hours
  • Written Communication – 6 hours
  • Oral Communication – 3 hours
  • Natural Sciences – 7 hours (from two disciplines, one to include a lab)
  • Mathematics – 3 hours
  • Humanities & Fine Arts – 9 hours (from at least two disciplines)
  • Additional requirements – 5 hours (to include UI100 for native students)
  • Civics examination

To be eligible for enrollment in the majority of courses offered by the Teacher Preparation Program
and required for a teaching degree (BSE, BSFCSE, BME), students must be admitted to the Teacher
Preparation Program (TPP). Students should apply for admission to the TPP upon having met the following entrance criteria:

  • 42 hours of coursework completed;
  • One of the following:
    • Composite/Superscore of 20 or higher on the ACT exam
    • Passing score on the Missouri General Education Assessment (MoGEA)*
    • Have a previous 4-year degree from an accredited college/university
  • The following course requirements met:
    • A minimum grade of 'C' in CF/PY120 The Child (Elementary, Early, and Exceptional) or PY222 Development of the Adolescent (Middle and Secondary)
    • A minimum grade of 'B' in ED280 Introduction to Education as a Profession or ME222 Principles of Teaching Music.
  • International Students must also meet the following requirements:
    • C1 (CEFR) level
    • IELTS minimum score of 7.0 or TOEFL minimum score of 95
    • Note: This policy is for non-United States citizens who are not native English
      speakers. Students from the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, and New
      Zealand are exempt from English proficiency verification

*Students already admitted to the University should take the MoGEA instead of re-taking the

Freshman Year 

Fall Semester (18-19 Hours) 
  • UI100 (1) 
  • EN100 (3) 
  • MH181 (3) 
  • MM001 (0) 
  • MM100 (3) 
  • MM105 (1) 
  • MP1xx (1) 
  • MU110 (0) 
  • MA123 (1)
  • MU151 (or proficiency) (1) 
  • MU3xx (choral ensemble) (1) 
  • General Education (3)  
Spring Semester (19-20 Hours) 
  • ME222 (3) 
  • MM102 (3) 
  • MM106 (1) 
  • MP1xx (1) 
  • MU110 (0) 
  • MU124 (1) 
  • MU152 (or proficiency) (1) 
  • MU3xx (choral ensemble) (1) 
  • PY222 (3) 
  • General Education (3) 
  • General Education (3) 

Milestone: Maintain 2.75 cumulative GPA, Complete MEP 

Sophomore Year 

Fall Semester (18-19 Hours) 
  • MH251 (3) 
  • MM203 (3) 
  • MM207 (1) 
  • MP2xx (1) 
  • MU110 (0) 
  • MU253 (or proficiency) (1) 
  • MU3xx (choral ensemble) (1) 
  • General Education (3) 
  • General Education (3) 
  • General Education (3) 
Spring Semester (18-19 Hours) 
  • MH252 (3) 
  • MM002 (0) 
  • MM204 (3) 
  • MM208 (1) 
  • MP2xx (1) 
  • MU001 (0) 
  • MU002 (0) 
  • MU110 (0) 
  • MU254 (or proficiency) (1) 
  • MU3xx (choral ensemble) (1) 
  • General Education (3) 
  • General Education (3) 
  • General Education (3) 

Milestone: Maintain 2.75 cumulative GPA, Passing score MoGEA 

Junior Year 

Fall Semester (12 Hours) 
  • EX390 (3) 
  • MP211 (1) 
  • MP3xx (2) 
  • MU110 (0)
  • MU341 (2) 
  • MU3xx (choral ensemble) (1) 
  • SE350 (3) 
Spring Semester (18 Hours) 
  • ME270 (1) 
  • ME371 (3) 
  • ME443 (2) 
  • MU3xx (2) 
  • MU110 (0)
  • MU343 (2) 
  • MU3xx (choral ensemble) (1) 
  • SE307 (3) 
  • SE365 (4) 

Senior Year 

Fall Semester (13 Hours) 
  • ME001 (0) 
  • ME370 (1) 
  • ME373 (3) 
  • ME450 (2) 
  • MP4xx (1) 
  • MU110 (0) 
  • MU424 (2) 
  • MU3xx (choral ensemble) (1) 
  • SE385 (3) 
Spring Semester (13 Hours) 
  • EF400 (1) 
  • ME465 (12) 

Milestone: Prior to last semester: Passing score Mo Content Exams, 2.75 cumulative GPA, 3.0 GPA in content; 3.0 GPA in pedagogy; all content and professional education coursework complete.

“Critical Courses” are italicized and bold. Data shows that students who have completed this course in the first two years and have earned the noted grade are most likely to complete this program of study.


Opportunities in Music at SEMO

Become a Redhawk.

Do more than dream about the future. Take the first steps to make it all happen.

Get Funding for Your Education

Missouri’s opened the door to a more educated workforce. We want to help you walk through it. If you’re an adult learner and a Missouri resident returning to college, learn about the Fast Track Workforce Incentive Grant. It’s a statewide financial aid program that can be used to pursue a certificate, degree or industry-recognized credential in a high need area in Missouri. This major is eligible for the Fast Track grant.


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