As far as online music education schools go one name seems to stand out at the top, the Berklee College of Music in Boston. As one of the more prestigious brick and mortar music schools Berklee branched out into the online arena in 2002 with Berklee Online. Since then their large and growing online offerings have taught thousands of students from over 150 different countries as well as well known performers from major classical, contemporary, and rock groups. What can you earn in the music arena from Berklee Online? Read on to find out.
Berklee's Music Certificate Programs
The most popular of Berklee College of Music's online offerings consist of professional certificate programs that allowed participants to get focused, in depth instruction on a number of music, technology, and business related areas. The certificate programs at Berklee come in three flavors, from specialist certifications (3 classes for a total of 9 credits hours), professional level certifications (6 classes for 18 credit hours), and master level certificates consisting of 8-12 courses total.
Berklee also offers twelve week a la carte courses on topics such as music production, songwriting, orchestration, music theory, music business and many more as well as a full slate of instrument specific courses on the guitar, bass, keyboards, drums, and voice. All are taught by Berklee's professional music education staff and since Berklee is an accredited institution all of those credits can be transferred to other institutions to be used toward a degree or to meet other professional or personal goals depending on the receiving institution.
Berklee's New Bachelor of Professional Studies Program
At Berklee one of the most popular requests has been for them to offer a music bachelors degree program online. After several years of preparation and improving the methods with which they provide online music courses Berklee has announced that they will soon begin to offer a full Bachelor of Professional Studies degree in Music Business as well as a Bachelor of professional Studies in Music Production. Both will be available completely online beginning in the fall of 2014 with applications for the program being accepted a year earlier. In addition to the program being one of the first to offer a fully online bachelors degree Berklee is pricing it very competitively. The online music degree will cost roughly 60% less than its on-campus equivalent, but will carry the same prestige and weight as a bachelors degree from any other accredited institution.
The full Bachelor of Professional Studies course will require participants to complete ten courses over the span of a traditional four year undergraduate education. The classes will be largely asynchronous but each week each class will hold an online meeting (via Berklee's own customized learning management system) which students will be expected to attend to converse with the instructor, listen to guest speakers, etc. However, Berklee has made a commitment to help online students find a class schedule and progression of classes that work for each individual. Just as with a traditional college some students may be able to spread things out longer than four years in order to work around their personal and professional schedules.
Why Choose Berklee?
Today there are literally dozens if not hundreds of brick and mortar colleges that are offering music and other online courses but very few have the same track record and prestige as Berklee. Their courses have won the Best Online Course award from the University Professional and Continuing Education Association (UPCEA) eight years running while competing against other all other online colleges from hundreds of different fields of study. Taking classes from Berklee Online is challenging to be sure. They hold their online coursework to the same high standards as their on campus offerings, but for students that are willing to commit to the hard work and study required, earning a certificate or even a full degree from Berklee Online would be an excellent choice.