MMEd FAQs

I teach and live out of state (outside of Massachusetts) - can I still be admitted to the program?
Yes, we strongly encourage and welcome applicants from out of state. Admission requirements pertaining to teacher licensure will be evaluated based on state to state equivalencies

What if I do not have my Initial License - can I still be admitted to the program?
Yes, provisionally, with special permission from the Program Director.  The M.M.Ed Program at Gordon College leads to endorsement for the Professional License in the Commonwealth of MA, but teachers need the Initial License first (and need to have taught in a public school setting for 5 years with the Initial License before they are eligible to be endorsed for their Professional License).

Gordon College offers a post-baccalaureate program for the Initial License in Music.  Students may choose to complete the initial license coursework first, before matriculating into the Master's Degree Program, or they may choose to do the coursework simultaneously with their enrollment in the master's degree program, since M.M.Ed coursework takes place during the summer, and post-baccalaureate initial license coursework takes place during the academic year.  A can work with students to map out the best plan of study.

Your state of residence may use different names for the various levels of licensure, so be sure to check the equivalencies. If you teach in a private school and want to earn your master's degree but do not intend to pursue professional licensure, this initial license requirement may be waived entirely.

My license says "Preliminary." What does that mean?
The licensure terminology in Massachusetts has changed over the last few years. This license is the first stage, where an educator has passed the music content area MTEL educator exam in Massachusetts, but may not have completed a bachelor's degree in music education, nor fulfilled a student teaching practicum requirement as an undergraduate music education major.  Preliminary is considered a temporary license, which may allow a teacher to be hired in a public school district, with the intention that they achieve their Initial License within a certain timeframe.  The K-12 music licensure stages in the Commonwealth of MA are as follows:  Preliminary; Initial; Professional.

I don't have an undergraduate degree in music education. Can I still enroll in the M.M.Ed program?
Under certain circumstances, yes. Equivalent degrees may be accepted, but you must have earned it from an accredited institution. Teaching experience is also considered as an important part of the admissions requirements, and applicants who have a number of years of demonstrated success as a music educator can be accepted to the program with provisional requirements.

What if my undergraduate GPA is lower than 2.85?
Your application will be considered if you have a low GPA, although you may be accepted provisionally by the Program Director until you can demonstrate the ability to maintain the minimum program GPA.

Can I be accepted without two years of experience?
Your application will be considered after one year of teaching in the music classroom based on reveiw and evaluation of your admission teaching demonstration video, your recommendations, essay, and other supporting materials. 

Is the M.M.Ed. at Gordon approved by the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education?
Yes, the program was evaluated by the Massachusetts DESE in April 2011. The M.M.Ed. leading to professional licensure was re-approved, and the state regulations for subject matter knowledge and professional standards for teachers were all met.

Do I have to take the GRE as a requirement for admission?
No, but the video recording of teaching and the essay on teaching philosophy will be evaluated very carefully, as well as your transcripts and letters of recommendation. We are looking for dedicated professionals who wish to challenge themselves to be better teachers, and who wish to join a passionate community of music educators committed to advancing the field of music education for all students.

Is it mandatory to complete the program in three consecutive summers?
While it is not mandatory, it is highly recommended and encouraged.  Consecutive summers will keep you with the same cohort of students in all of your classes for the three summers, allowing for the development of valuable peer relationships, and a special bond with your community of learners.  Because of personal and professional circumstances (growing famlilies, changes in employment, or financial situations) students are permitted to "take a summer off" and prolong their study over 4, or at the most, 5 summers.

Does Gordon College accept transfer credit for the M.M.Ed. Program?
Yes.  To be considered for transfer credit, coursework must have been completed no longer than 6 years prior to matriculation into the degree program.  It must be graduate level coursework in the music content area, from an accredited institution, and is subject to review by the program director.  Official transcripts, and a course description or syllabus must be provided.  In the event that transfer credit is accepted, it is most likely applied towards the degree program's 6 elective credit requirements.

What are the options for fulfilling the 6 elective credit requirements?
Students may choose from a variety of summer workshop topics, offered during a mid-July week-long mini term, where regular summer courses suspend. These professional development workshops are open to music educators from around the region and the country.

Students may choose to enroll in an advanced choral or instrumental conducting seminar, where they study with only 1 or 2 other students with conducting faculty in a small seminar setting, as well as lead and conduct the band and choral lab ensembles in daily rehearsals during the summer term.  A general music seminar is also an option for elective credit.

Additional summer elective courses are offered based on enrollment interest and the availability of faculty, such as composition, and a variety of multicultural world music topics.

During the academic year, the Graduate Music Program at Gordon hosts a weekend intensive workshop for credit once in the fall semester, and once in the spring semester.  Dates and topics vary each year.

Teachers who attend the annual. MMEA All State Conference in Boston, may earn graduate credit for attendance and participation in the conference.

I am exclusively a choral teacher, and vocalist.  What will I do in the Instrumental Band Lab Ensemble?
Most likely, you will be assigned to the percussion section.  Some students like to challenge themselves to play a secondary instrument (or learn a new one!) You will be just as much a part of the ensemble rehearsal activities as anyone else who has a primary instrument such as flute or trumpet.  String players are encouraged to play primary and secondary instruments as well, including violin, viola, cello and bass.

I am exclusively an instrumental band teacher.  What will I do in the Choral Lab Ensemble?
All of our M.M.Ed. students sing in the Lab Chorus.  For instrumental band teachers, it ends up being one of the most enlightening and enjoyable experiences of each of their summers, as they are challenged to learn new music, explore the use of their voice, and gain valuable insight into conducting and rehearsal techniques that can be used across the spectrum of instrumental, choral, and general music classroom settings.

Is on campus housing available?
Yes, air-condtioned apartment style housing is available to graduate students in the summer. Students will have suite-mates who are also M.M.Ed. students, but will have a private bedroom. Families (spouses, children etc.) of students are not permitted to live in the residence halls.

What is required of students during the three weeks of online learning in June each summer?
Gordon College uses Blackboard for the delivery of online course content and instruction. Students can expect to spend between 6 - 8 hours per week engaing with a variety of online course content and activity, including listening and commenting on lectures and presentations, engaging with peers using online journals, blogs, discussion forums, listening, reading, and submitting assignments.

What is the daily on campus schedule during the summer?
In general, the on campus portion of the M.M.Ed. coursework continues the last week of June, and throughout the month of July for 5 weeks.  (the middle week is the optional workshop mini-term, when students can earn elective credit).  First year students are generally in class from 10:00 am - 3:45 pm, 5 days a week.