Three-Summer Master's Program in Music Education

The SJSU Three-Summer Master's Program in Music Education is one of the most accessible and progressive graduate music education programs currently offered. It is the same accredited degree available at SJSU during the regular school year, but is delivered as a hybrid of online and in residence course work. Theoretical courses are offered online and can be completed from anywhere in the world, while best-practice classes occur during the residency. Students have three options in order to tailor the program to their individual needs and interests. First, the three-summer master's; second, single summer certificates; and third, individual residency courses. The summer and online structure allow us to invite instructors who are the most prominent in our field, and we attract a diverse cohort of students from around the world. Participants' educational experiences are enhanced through the hybrid structure (online/residency) and the connection of theory to practice. This unique format is a natural extension of the innovation culture of our Silicon Valley community.

The three-summer MA Music Education is based on Dr. Diana Hollinger's research into Venezuela's "El Sistema." El Sistema ideals include access, youth development, rigorous musicianship, and community development. 

Program Features

  1. The summer degree is part of a fully accredited School and follows the same curriculum as the traditional school year masters.
  2. We are the first to offer the online option during the summer.
  3. We offer integration of theory with practice.
  4. We offer a hybrid online/residency approach. Reading-intensive theoretical coursework is online, while activity-based workshops are offered during a short residency.
  5. Our coursework is grounded in El Sistema ideals of access, youth development, rigorous musicianship, and community development.

Required Courses

The three-summer masters consists of two online core courses each summer (6 units), three residency electives (3 units, 1 unit each), and a culminating project unit (1 unit). Students take all three summers to earn a master's degree. Residency courses are also open individually to local music educators.

Applying to the Program

We seek to empower our community through music education, and embrace El Sistema ideals of access, youth development, rigorous musicianship, and community development. We challenge our students to achieve clarity in their own philosophy and excellence in musicianship and pedagogy.

For more admission details, please visit the Music Department's How to Apply section.

For additional information, please visit the program FAQ.

Please contact Program Coordinator, Dr. Diana Hollinger, at if you have any question regarding the Three-Summer Master's Music Education Program.