Questions to Ask a School
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It’s easy to find the right fit for you when you ask important questions. Here are some questions for you to ask schools in which you are interested.
What degrees do you offer and what might I do with my training?
The National Association of Schools of Music (NASM) accredits all degree programs offered within Shepherd University’s School of Music. NASM, founded in 1924, is an organization of schools, conservatories, colleges and universities with approximately 647 accredited institutional members. It establishes national standards for undergraduate and graduate degrees and other credentials.
The Bachelor of Music (B. M.) in Performance degree is a professional degree, which focuses on intensive work in music allied with competence in an area of specialization–voice, piano, or major orchestra instruments, while being supported by a program in general studies. Majors within this degree learn the various professional responsibilities of the career musician, which include technical competence, a broad knowledge of music and music literature, the ability to integrate musical knowledge and skills, sensitivity to musical styles, and an insight into the role of music in intellectual and cultural life.
Students preparing for careers as professional artist-performers, studio educators, church musicians, or for graduate school admission often choose the B.M. in Performance.
The Bachelor of Music Education (B.M.E.) with a teaching field in comprehensive music, grades preK-adult, is a four-year program structured to develop competencies in professional education and in specific areas of musicianship, which include: conducting and musical leadership; arranging; keyboard performance; pedagogy in piano, voice, or instrumental; and the application of analytical and historical knowledge to curriculum development, lesson planning, and daily classroom and performance activities. B.M.E. students learn to relate their understanding of music with respect to styles, literature, multiple cultural sources, and historical development, both in general and as related to any area of specialization.
Upon satisfactory completion of curriculum requirements, the student is awarded a Bachelor of Music Education (B.M.E.) and can apply to the State Department of Education for certification.
The Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) degree in Music is a liberal arts degree which focuses on music in the context of a broad program of general studies. The courses within the degree include performance, musicianship, music history, and elective studies in music. However, the orientation is toward a broad coverage of music, and has many electives built into the degree for students seeking a solid foundation in music while studying areas of other interest. Within the B.A. in Music, Shepherd University offers concentrations in: Composition, Music Theater, and Piano Pedagogy.
Students preparing for careers in the communicative arts, music business, arts administration, church music, music therapy, or graduate school admission often choose the B.A. in Music. This four-year program gives majors the freedom to select other courses to complement the music courses that match their career interests.
What are Shepherd Music students like?
- We are focused on the health and well being of the self and the community. Shepherd music students and teachers value optimism, hard work, and a lifelong pursuit of self-improvement.
- We value mentorship and embrace opportunities to help others realize their potential.
- We value delivering on promises and being held accountable for our words, actions, and deeds.
- We value music as a means of communicating with each other.
- We value the need and purpose of community, and know that community can begin with two people.
In what environments do we create music, engage in service, and practice these values?
- In the environments of classroom and applied teaching
- On the stage during concerts and productions
- In daily meetings between teachers and students and supportive interactions between students
- Within our vibrant student organizations like Sigma Alpha Iota, Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, the Society for Composers Incorporated (SCI), the National Association for Music Education (NAfME); in the Ram Band and smaller ensembles; and in collaborative projects between community members, faculty, staff, and students
What are your facilities like?
The School of Music is housed in the Frank Creative Arts Center, which provides the physical resources to meet ever-changing vocational and educational demands. The facility contains 14 traditional and acoustic environment practice-rooms, classrooms, and studio-offices in addition to unique areas such as the computer lab, the electronic piano lab, the recording studio, vocal and instrumental rehearsal areas, a music resource center, and a music recital hall. The Frank Center theater serves as an additional performance venue. Equipment is continually updated.