Become a Music Teacher in Indiana

Becoming a music teacher in Indiana requires advanced musical and pedagogical ability. Instructors must pass a series of tests and special training in order to be certified. Find out what it takes to get certified as a music teacher in Indiana! Schools offering Teaching & Learning degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Career Overview for Music Teachers in Indiana

Music teachers are an essential part of developing a child's creativity and self-expression. Teachers pursuing a career in music education are not only well-versed in pedagogical theory and techniques, but possess strong musical ability both instrumentally and vocally. Those seeking certification as a music instructor in Indiana must successfully pass a state-approved music education program as well as all required tests for licensure.

Education/Experience Required Bachelor's degree in music education from regionally accredited college or university;
Pass at least one course in Special Education;
Suicide prevention training;
CPR Heimlich-Maneuver training
Exams Required Indiana CORE Assessments for Educator Licensure in Corresponding Grade Level;
Music: Instrumental & Music: Vocal Content Assessments
License Validity Period Initial practitioner license valid for two years;
Proficient practitioner license valid for five years
Certification Renewal Process Initial practitioner licenses nonrenewable;
Proficient practitioner licenses renewable after five years with online or mailed application and submission of Professional Growth Plan
CEU Credits Required for Renewal 90 CEU credits
Average Salary in Indiana (2018) $52,360 (elementary school);
$52,690 (middle school);
$53,030 (high school)*
Estimated Job Growth 2016 – 2026 7% (elementary school);
8% (middle and high school)*

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS); data represents school teachers in general and not music teachers specifically

Special Skills & Characteristics

Music teachers are required to demonstrate excellent skill in both musical ability and classroom management. Not only are teachers expected to possess the basic skills required of traditional classroom instructors, but they must pass a series of additional tests that prove they are musically gifted. The following are some of the skills and characteristics music teachers should have:

  • Ability to communicate difficult concepts in simple terms
  • Proven vocal and instrumental musical ability
  • Advanced knowledge of musical theory
  • Strong organizational and planning skills

Educators specializing in musical instruction should also be skilled networkers as this will aid in their ability to draw crowds for school concerts, plays, and talent shows.

Educational Requirements

Indiana requires all aspiring music teachers to possess at least a bachelor's degree in music education from a regionally accredited college or university that features a state-approved program. The program should include at least one course in Special Education in addition to the standard pedagogical and musical education requirements set forth by the Indiana State Board of Education. Those seeking certification will also be expected to pass courses in suicide prevention and CPR Heimlich-Maneuver training in order to qualify for licensure.

Exam Requirements

While Indiana no longer requires Praxis I or Praxis II testing for its teachers, it does require instructors to pass a series of state-mandated exams. Music teachers, in particular, must pass the Indiana CORE Assessments for Educator Licensure in the grade level they wish to teach. They must also complete the following music education licensure tests:

  • Music Instrumental: (026) Fine Arts — General Music
  • Music Instrumental: (027) Fine Arts — Instrumental Music
  • Music Vocal: (028) Fine Arts — Vocal Music

As part of their music education program, students may be expected to pass performance-based exams during which they must illustrate their vocal and instrumental abilities by singing and playing the piano before the music education department.

Certification Requirements

In order to be certified as a teacher in the state of Indiana, candidates must complete a valid music education program from a regionally accredited college or university, resulting in at least a bachelor's degree. Additionally, they must pass all required state tests, including the Indiana CORE Assessments for Educator Licensure and Content Area Assessments. Candidates must also present the following for certification consideration:

  • $35 fee
  • Limited criminal history check
  • NCATE program validation for completion
  • Certification of CPR Heimlich-Maneuver training completion
  • Certification of suicide prevention training completion

Each teacher begins by receiving their initial practitioner license, which must be converted to a proficient practitioner license by the end of the two-year initial licensure period.

Certification Renewal

Initial practitioner licenses are issued on a two-year basis and are not eligible for renewal. Rather, teachers must convert their initial certification to a proficient practitioner license by completing the processes indicated above as well as a two-year mentorship program for a professional evaluation. Teachers seeking certification renewal must provide the following:

  • Mailed or online application
  • 90 CEU credits from an accredited college or university
  • An approved Professional Growth Plan submitted no later than 120 days prior to license expiration

Proficient practitioner licenses remain valid for five years. All Professional Growth Plans must be in compliance with Indiana Academic Standards and Indiana Professional Standards in order to be approved by the committee and eligible for certification renewal.

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