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Music Education, BME - Vocal Option

Vocal Bachelor of Music Education

Do you love to sing? Would you like to earn a vocal degree that trains you to teach students while also providing the skills you need to be a performer or conductor? The University of Central Missouri’s Vocal Bachelor of Music Education program offers a well-rounded curriculum that prepares you to work in classrooms, on stage and in recording studios.

A vocal degree for the future

Learn how to be an engaging and effective vocal teacher who will have a lasting impact on music students. This versatile singing degree from UCM gives you the tools you’ll need to handle the changing conditions and trends affecting schools.

You’ll be paired with a UCM faculty mentor to tailor this singing degree program in a way that addresses your personal career goals. UCM’s small classes and many opportunities to learn from and perform for professional musicians and educators — including guest artists and clinicians from across the country — give you access to exciting real-world settings.

NAfME logo

Professional recognition by NAfME

A map of Missouri and the UCM location

Near Kansas City cultural highlights

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Individual sessions with faculty mentors

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High-quality performance recordings

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NASM accreditation since 1947

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UCM chapters of choral associations

What you will study

Most classes in UCM’s Bachelor of Music Education - Vocal degree program are small, ensuring that you get individualized attention for personal growth. You’ll gain competency as a vocal teacher while studying foundational topics such as how the voice works and addressing personalized student needs. You’ll also have many opportunities to hone your performance skills by joining UCM’s choirs, ensembles and musical theatre productions.

Some of the classes you may take include:

  • Choral Techniques/Choral Conducting: In these two courses, you’ll learn how to be a choir teacher. Study the history, philosophy and common practices of choral music education as you hone your skills to teach your own students and become a conductor-teacher. 
  • Vocal Lessons: Study one-on-one with a classically trained professional singer. You’ll improve your solo voice, explore music from all styles and periods and learn common lyrical languages such as English, Italian, French and German. Most UCM students earning this singing degree offer a full recital upon completing their program.
  • Field Experience: Observe and work with the region’s top educators in your specialty area — then lead your own lessons as a student teacher in your final semester.


Excellence in Music Education

  • One of Missouri’s largest music schools, with more than 30 full-time and adjunct faculty. About 200 Music majors enroll in the program each year.
  • Accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music (NASM) since 1947.
  • Outstanding Contributor Award winner (Missouri Music Educators Association (MMEA) conference, 2022)
  • Top 15%: Best Value Bachelor’s Degree Colleges for General Music (College Factual, 2022)
  • Top 7.5%: Most Popular Bachelor’s Degree Colleges for Music Education (College Factual, 2022)
  • Top 15%: Most Focused Colleges for Education (College Factual, 2022)
  • Top 15%: Most Popular Colleges for Music Education (College Factual, 2022)
  • A Most Focused College for General Music (College Factual, 2022)


Unique learning opportunities in vocal music education

At the University of Central Missouri, you’ll have many real-world opportunities, both as a vocalist and an educator, to prepare you to achieve your goals:

  • Guest conducting: Upper-level Vocal Music Education majors are encouraged to lead sectional rehearsals and guest conduct major ensembles in the Music department. Your vocal degree will prepare you to work with elementary and high school students, as well as with other professional musicians.
  • Study abroad: A month-long, faculty-led summer tour to Florence, Italy, held in coordination with our partner school, Accademia Europea di Firenze (AEF), offers you the opportunity to live, study and perform abroad. As you experience the culture, art and cuisine of Italy, you can work directly with AEF faculty in addition to your UCM Applied Voice professors.
  • Professional connections: Participate in events, seminars and individualized programs with the industry’s leading composers, educators, conductors and performers. Join our choirs, attend an opera workshop and become a member of the UCM chapters of the American Choral Directors Association, the Music Teachers National Association and other national groups. Combined with your vocal degree, these valuable networking opportunities will help you build a multifaceted career.


What can you do with a Vocal degree from UCM?

Each year, the teaching profession lists many more jobs than graduates are able to fill, so your prospects for securing a teaching position are strong. Superintendents and principals from regional schools view UCM Vocal BME graduates as excellent candidates because of our quality programming and strong historical performance.

Many of our alumni teach K–12 music in Greater Kansas City and St. Louis school districts, as well as throughout the United States. With your singing degree, you could also continue your music studies at UCM or another music university.

A vocal degree from UCM also prepares you to work as a professional musician beyond the classroom. Your coursework and training will connect you to conductors, composers, vocal pedagogues and musicians from around the globe who can guide you to many opportunities for careers in music.

UCM vocal degree graduates

Use the interactive tool below to explore your career options and salary potential when you graduate with a Vocal Bachelor of Music Education degree from the University of Central Missouri.




Financial assistance options for your Vocal BME degree

The University of Central Missouri offers many resources to help you finance your undergraduate education and keep your college costs and student debt low.

Beyond the awards and scholarships available through UCM, scholarships are available specifically for Music Education majors in the Vocal degree program, including:

  • Claude T. and Maureen Smith Music Scholarship
  • Conan and Patricia Castle Vocal Music Scholarship
  • The Eleanor B. Shockey Vocal Music Scholarship
  • Dr. Jon Ferguson Music Scholarship
  • Carla Maltas Music Education Scholarship

Learn more about program-specific scholarships by using the UCM Scholarship Finder.



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Take your degree further.

Continue your studies at UCM with a master’s degree program in Music or teaching certification:

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Make yourself more marketable.

Adding a UCM minor to your singing degree can expand your career possibilities:

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Explore programs related to vocal music education.

If you’re not certain what you’d like to major in, consider these other undergraduate programs at UCM:


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