<span>Music</span>

Best Music Schools

How are the Top Music Programs Chosen?

Cappex determines “Best Colleges” based on publicly-available information from the US Department of Education. Several factors include, but are not limited to, data about admitted students’ academic calibers, students’ expected career outcomes after graduation, and colleges’ investments toward making their institution accessible to all students.

Explore the Best Music Programs with Cappex!

Create a Cappex account to start saving schools to your personal list. Wondering where you stand when applying to the best universities in the USA? You can also see your chances of acceptance and get insights into your target, reach, and likely schools.

Harvard University

Harvard College is an undergraduate liberal arts school located in Cambridge, MA, within Harvard University. Founded in 1636, this private, very selective, Ivy League college is the oldest institution of higher learning in the United States and was...

“…

With its liberal arts focus, Harvard provides the type of education that helps you to become a better thinker. You probably won't gain as much concrete knowledge here as you would at a non-liberal arts college, but I think this has more to do with...

” – Cindy
Stanford University

Stanford University is a research institution located in the California town of the same name. The more than 8,000-acre campus features seven schools, the largest of which is the School of Humanities and Sciences, and 80 residential facilities. With...

“…

The sheer diversity of classes is amazing and the quarter system means that you have the opportunity to take a lot of them without overloading youself

” – Charlene from Sandy, UT
Brown University

Brown University is a private Ivy League research university that was founded in 1764. The university offers more than 40 academic departments. The campus is home to program housing for students who share similar interests, plus substance-free...

“…

Brown University really emphasizes the learning experience for undergraduate students. With no core curriculum, students have the opportunity to explore courses in fields they would not have the opportunity to at other colleges. As a result, a...

” – Nicole from Providence, RI
Northwestern University

Northwestern University is a 4-year private research institution in the Chicagoland area. Northwestern is home to 12 colleges and schools and is renowned for its Medill School of Journalism, Kellogg School of Management, and Bienen School of Music...

“…

If you can to learn, you will. The professors don't spoon-feed information - instead, they give you the tools to learn the subjects yourself. Also, just hanging out with people (students, and sometimes students hang out with professors) helps you...

” – Allison from Port Barrington, IL
Swarthmore College

Swarthmore College is a private liberal arts institution in Pennsylvania that was founded in 1864. The college was founded by the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers) and its "most selective" admissions process is also need-blind. The 425-acre...

“…

Swarthmore is one of the toughest colleges in the country, but it pays off. Aside from major intro classes like Psch 1 and Bio 1&amp;2, class sizes are very small. Professors are brilliant and AVAILABLE--unlike profs at huge research universities, they...

” – Some Swattie
Rice University

Originally founded as the William Marsh Rice Institute for the Advancement of Literature, Science, and Art, Rice University is a 4-year private institution in Houston. Rice encompasses six colleges and schools conferring undergraduate degrees in over...

“…

Most professors teach well, and expect students to attend lectures and read the assigned material, which leads to good retention of information. Unfortunately, the workload can be somewhat heavy at times, depending on classes taken.

” – Bianca from Angel Fire, NM
Vanderbilt University

Vanderbilt University was founded in 1873 as a private research university in Nashville, Tennessee. Academically, the university focuses on an interdisciplinary approach,  encouraging students to take courses from any of the 143 areas of study. The...

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Vanderbilt is often confused with one of them Ivy League schools up in Connecticut or wherever, but with good reason. If you choose to attend the prestigious Vanderbilt University then you will receive a very fine education from professors who want...

” – K from Atlanta, GA
Johns Hopkins University

Johns Hopkins University is a private institution in Baltimore and the first research university in the United States. Hopkins confers degrees and certificates in over 260 academic programs. Additionally, Hopkins is home to the Hopkins Applied...

“…

All of the classes are full of material and even the intro classes go above and beyond what one would have learned in high school, and even in an AP class.

” – Alyssa from Grand Blanc, MI
University of Southern California

The University of Southern California is a high-research institution located in Los Angeles, California, where it’s been educating students since 1880. The university is comprised of two campuses, the main University Park and the Health Sciences...

“…

University of Southern California is among the top universities in the country, and keeps getting better. The professors at the university are all at the top of their fields, and the extensive alumni list proves that the connections that you make...

” – Thomas from Houston, TX
Wesleyan University

Founded in 1831 by a group of local citizens and Methodist leaders, Wesleyan University is a liberal arts institution in central Connecticut. Wesleyan confers bachelor’s degrees in 45 academic majors. For students interested in the fine and...

“…

Around campus, there is a general environment of smart, open-minded individuals who are, by a large margin, happy to be at Wesleyan. The free exchange of ideas is valued greatly by students and professors alike. The professors are very engaging and...

” – Brendan from Middletown, CT
Carnegie Mellon University

Carnegie Mellon University stands among the world's most renowned educational institutions, and we tap into our diverse community and world-leading digital technologies across business, engineering, the sciences, the humanities and the arts to chart...

“…

The amount of things you learn throughout your classes is amazing to me. Just this past 2 weeks, I've learned so many things about programming that it has made a noticeable change in how I approach problems.

” – Mathew from Jensen Beach, FL
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is an institution in the UNC system and the first public university to confer degrees. A member of the Association of American Universities, UNC Chapel Hill is considered a Public Ivy and houses a...

“…

Although some of the classes are large, students have the opportunity for some one on one time with professors and teaching assistants through office hours and smaller versions of lectures called recitations. So no matter the class size, you are...

” – Alexia from Apex, NC
University of California-Los Angeles

The University of California in Los Angeles, better known as UCLA, is one of 10 campuses in the UC system. With 109 academic departments and more than 125 majors offered, as well as an average of one billion dollars funded for research every year and...

“…

The amount of knowledge you will gain during your first year at UCLA will be more valuable than any previous experiences. First, there is the academic aspect. Essentially, the material being taught in college is the same for any school, so self...

” – Joanna from Carson City, NV
University of Michigan-Ann Arbor

Founded in 1817, University of Michigan in Ann Arbor is the state’s oldest university. U of M has very high research activity and is a often referred to as a Public Ivy. The university at Ann Arbor offers upwards of 260 degrees for undergraduates...

“…

The classes here are pretty intense. I'm a student in the college of Engineering, where group work is an important part of most classes. Most of the core classes like calculus, physics, and chemistry are very large classes, but they all have smaller...

” – Elizabeth from Rochester Hills, MI
Northeastern University

A private research institution located in Boston, Northeastern University was founded in 1898. Northeastern is home to nine colleges and schools conferring undergraduate degrees in over 90 academic majors. Additionally, the university operates a...

“…

I'm learning so much from Northeastern. I'm currently a psychology major and a music industry minor. I absolutely love it here because there is so many diverse majors and minors that I can do. One of the greatest things here is that I can always see...

” – Xiangling from Staten Island`, NY
Yale University

Yale University is a large research institution chartered in 1701, making it the third-oldest institution of higher education in the US. On top of the numerous academic undergrad degrees at Yale College, students also have access to Multidisciplinary...

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It is hard to limit yourself to only 4 or 5 courses with all that Yale has to offer. It isn't unheard of for very ambitious students to pile on 6 or even 7 at a time! Many classes will push you hard to master the material, but there are always a...

” – Yale '12
Wake Forest University

Founded in 1834, Wake Forest University is a 4-year private university with a liberal arts curriculum located in Winston-Salem. Wake Forest confers undergraduate degrees in over 40 academic majors and 60 minors and it does not require students to...

“…

Wake is not only a tough school to get into; it is also tough once you get there. Students jokingly call it Work Forest for a reason. Do not be deterred by warnings of tough classes, a degree from Wake means something, and ultimately Wake alumni...

” – Landon from Sanford, NC
Tulane University of Louisiana

Tulane University is private nstitution located in New Orleans, Louisiana. As one of only 62 members in the Association of American Universities, TU is considered a top research university. The campus features five undergraduate schools that provide...

“…

In my first year at Tulane, I learned so much; not only in the classroom, but outside of it as well. At a school where almost 70% of the students are from outside of Louisiana, I had no problem meeting many diverse people, (culturally and...

” – Scott from Stillwater, MN
Boston University

Boston University is a private, non-profit university with a heavy emphasis on research. BU’s main location is right in its name—Boston, MA—but the university has flagship locations around the world, including in London, Sydney, and Washington, DC...

“…

The faculty is usually attentive and pretty entertaining. Most professors know exactly what they're talking about and provide insight into difficult fields with ease. I took the Core Curriculum and am learning much about history and philosophy. I...

” – Alex from Waco, TX
Brandeis University

Brandeis University is a private, nonsectarian institution founded by the Jewish community and named after the Supreme Court’s first Jewish justice. The 235-acre campus is located in the suburbs of Boston, Massachusetts, and home to more than 100...

“…

Brandeis is an all inclusive school with everything a student could wish for. Busting at the seams with student diversity, clubs of all kinds, and professors that you can approach at almost any time, the smaller community of Brandeis University is...

” – ManOfLaMancha
Columbia University in the City of New York

Founded in 1754, Columbia University is a private research university located in the Upper West Side of Manhattan. The urban Ivy League campus houses 17 libraries and 20 schools, which offer upwards of 350 majors, as well as the Cathedral of St. John...

“…

The amount of learning that takes place in one semester at Columbia is truly amazing. I have learned more in such a short period of time than I would have ever thought possible. As much as we may all complain about how extensive the Core Curriculum...

” – Nina from Baldwin, NY
University of Rochester

The University of Rochester is private, research university highly ranked in the National Universities list by U.S. News & World Report. It operates under the mission "Learn, Discover, Heal, Create—and Make the World Ever Better" and students can...

“…

The curriculum at the University of Rochester is what really makes it special. There are no general education requirements. The only required course for all majors is a writing class, which is offered in many subject areas to allow you to explore a...

” – Eloise from Rochester, NY
Case Western Reserve University

Founded by the merger of Western Reserve University and Case School of Applied Science, Case Western Reserve University is a 4-year private research institution in Cleveland. Case Western features nine schools conferring bachelor’s degrees in 95...

“…

The classes are very challenging and you definitely have to earn your grade, but when you look back at all you've learned, its worth it!

” – Meaghan from Harrah, OK
Cornell University

As an Ivy League, a research institution, and one of three private land-grant universities in the US, Cornell University admissions are highly competitive. Since Cornell was founded in 1865 in Ithaca, NY, it has been a co-educational, nonsectarian...

“…

With the exorbitant amount of majors offered, it is extremely easy to find your niche at Cornell. As an engineer, I was worried about immediately being funneled into classes filled to the brim with only math and science majors and engineers. I was...

” – Samantha from Ithaca, NY
University of California-Santa Barbara

University of California in Santa Barbara is a leading research institution in the city and state of the same name. UCSB is a member of the Association of American Universities, home to the National Center for Ecological Analysis, as well as an...

“…

- The quarter system allows you to take a wide variety of classes to figure out what you're interested in by experiencing different subjects in a short period of time.&#13;
- The environment, campus groups, and activities allow you to learn more about...

” – Taryn from Granada Hills, CA
University of California-San Diego

Founded in 1960, the University of California of San Diego is a research institution located in La Jolla, CA. The 1,200 coastal woodland campus along the Pacific Ocean is home to six undergraduate colleges, five academic divisions, 5 graduate and...

“…

Teachers can be great, but you must go to class to actually learn. I never thought I'd be skipping classes, but it happens and I learned the hard way that this is NOT smart. Discussions with TAs can be incredibly helpful as well. I had a math class...

” – Current Student from San Diego Area
University of Florida

One of the few land-, space-, and sea-grant institutions in the US, the University of Florida is a public research university founded in 1853. It is the eighth largest single-campus university in the United States. U.S. News & World Report have...

“…

This is the best school in the state hands down, and is also a powerful name amongst all colleges in the nation, both private and public.

” – Jerry from San Antonio, FL
Bucknell University

Bucknell University is a highly selective, private liberal arts college located in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania. As one of the nation's preeminent liberal arts universities and Division I schools, Bucknell offers a world-class learning experience where...

“…

As a small private school, Bucknell pays attention to their students. I have never had a hard time talking or staying after with professors. They truly care that you learn the material and know your name. Taking on average five courses a semester...

” – Margaret from Islip, NY
University of California-Irvine

The University of California in Irvine was founded in 1965 in the town and state of the same name, and is the youngest member of the Association of American Universities. This high-research institution offers 92 majors and 86 minors and the campus is...

“…

Being that I have only been at UCI for one year so far, I feel that I am really learning a lot from my professors and from the students that I have surrounded myself with. No matter where you are at, it is the people you are around that you can...

” – Emi from Temecula, CA
University of Miami

Founded in 1925, the University of Miami is a private research institution in south Florida. The U encompasses 11 colleges and schools conferring undergraduate degrees in over 180 fields of study. Away from the classroom, the Miami campus is home to...

“…

The Cool thing about UM is the diversity of the school and the city of Miami. I've met people from every corner of the country and the world and that's the best part about college, of course learning in class but also learning from those who are not...

” – Jude from Miami, FL
New York University

New York University, more commonly referred to as NYU, is a private university with campuses and academic centers all over the world, including Abu Dhabi, Shanghai, Africa, and Europe. As one of the largest private universities in the US, it’s...

“…

The learning portion is inevitable, isn’t it? NYU has various schools underneath its purple umbrella – College of Arts and Science, Tisch School of the Arts, Stern School of Business, Steinhardt School of Culture/Education/Human Development, College...

” – Lana from Tenafly, NJ
Florida State University

Florida State University is the oldest institution of Higher Education in Florida. Located on 1,633 acres of land in Tallahassee, FSU is a space- and sea-grant research university offering more than 300 degree programs. The campus is home to the only...

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There are many different programs at FSU so you will be surrounded with experienced and helpful faculty. The university is strong in the liberal arts and hard sciences, but they also have a number of other outstanding programs including criminology...

” – Alesha from Shalimar, FL
Georgia Institute of Technology-Main Campus

Georgia Institute of Technology, more commonly known as Georgia Tech, is a 4-year research institution offering technology-focused education based out of Atlanta, GA. The institution has a number of instructional sites, including online and physical...

“…

Georgia Tech will teach you skills for both inside and outside of the classroom. No matter what your major might be, you will be challenged to do your very best and you will learn how you operate as a student. By the end of your first year at Tech...

” – Alexandria from Hoschton, GA
Trinity University

Founded in 1869, Trinity University is a private liberal arts and sciences institution situated in San Antonio, TX. Trinity is affiliated with the Presbyterian Church and offers undergrad degrees in 47 academic majors. All freshmen must take a First...

“…

The professors at Trinity University are all very knowledgeable in their fields and outside and are passionate about what they do, which makes the classes interesting and challenging. However, the professors truly care about their students and will...

” – Kayleigh from Waco, TX
Gettysburg College

With a campus adjacent to the battlefield where President Abraham Lincoln made his famous Gettysburg address, Gettysburg College is a liberal arts college in southern Pennsylvania. Featuring a curriculum focused on four key elements of a liberal arts...

“…

Gettysburg is almost like a dream. I feel more at home here than I do anywhere else and being on campus makes me smile. I feel really lucky to get to attend this school and am really going to miss it when I graduate.

” – Kaytie from MA
St Olaf College

St. Olaf College is a 4-year institution founded in 1874 by Norwegian Lutheran Immigrants. Today, St. Olaf maintains its affiliation with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America on its 300-acre campus in Northfield, Minnesota, often called “The...

“…

Of course in the classroom I feel that I am learning from some of the brightest professors I will meet, but I am also learning a lot about myself through classes I take, interactions with others on campus, volunteer and abroad opportunities, and...

” – Kelsey from Portland, OR
Pepperdine University

With a campus overlooking Malibu Bluffs and the Pacific Ocean, Pepperdine University is a 4-year Christian institution in Malibu affiliated with the Churches of Christ. Pepperdine is home to colleges of Business, Law, Arts & Sciences, Public Policy...

“…

definitely an expensive school! but they're pretty good about financial aid and it's well worth it.

” – Rachael from Spokane, WA
Whitman College

An education from Whitman College is special.

As a small residential liberal arts college in Walla Walla, Washington, Whitman is rooted in the traditional liberal arts values like critical thought and academic rigor. But at our foundation is also a...

“…

Whitman is well known for its rigorous academics. To start with all freshmen must take an encounters course, which includes the study of texts most people would not have studied in high school (including The Qur'an or The Odyssey). This alone makes...

” – Geneva
Oberlin College

Oberlin College is a liberal arts institution that was founded in 1833 in Oberlin, OH. Only two colleges operate on this private university’s campus, a College of Arts and Sciences and the oldest continuously operating Conservatory of Music in the...

“…

The range of what you can learn here is vast. I'm currently kicking it with the true liberal arts experience taking cinema classes, photography, computer programming, Literature courses, and still being able to find incredible opportunities to...

” – Elliot from Somers Point, NJ
American University

American University is a research institution located in a residential neighborhood of Washington, DC. AU has eight schools on its carbon-neutral campus featuring more than 160 programs. American University is also home to many research centers...

“…

As a student of International Relations, I don't think I could have chosen a better school. My professors were not only well-versed on theory, but they had made (and were STILL making) valuable contributions to their fields. Relative to other schools...

” – Justine from Topeka, KS
College of the Ozarks

With campus a short distance from Lake Taneycomo, the College of the Ozarks is an evangelical Christian liberal arts college in southwest Missouri. College of the Ozarks grants undergrad degrees in 28 academic majors and all courses feature a Christ...

“…

I know I will learn a lot here because you have most of the the things I want to partake in.

” – Natalie from virginia, IL
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Founded in 1824, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute is the oldest continuously operating technological research university in the United States. On top of the usual academic offerings, RPI has programs in current and emerging issues, including in...

“…

RPI is a wonderful place to learn. The academics are rigorous here, but the hard work pays off. Although it's a technological institute, there are lots of fields you can pursue, including biology, architechture, management, information technology...

” – DS from Troy, NY
Syracuse University

Syracuse University is a private, research institution located in the New York town of the same name. SU’s 13 academic divisions offer 200 majors and 100 minors for undergraduate students, as well as multiple international study programs in  60...

“…

The selection of classes is amazing -- it is impossible to be disinterested in each and every one. Even in the required courses (generally speaking, there's only one, all the rest are options) you will be able to learn and stay interested...

” – Angela from Syracuse, NY
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Manhattan School of Music is a music conservatory based in the Upper West Side of New York City offering degrees in musical theatre, jazz, and classical music. Students study with recording artists, opera companies, jazz musicians, and professional...

“…

All of the faculty are extremely learned and passionate, eager to pass their knowledge on to students, even if you're not so interested. There are classes in pretty much every musical subject you might want - theory, aural skills, composition, injury...

” – Mariya from New Paltz, NY
Binghamton University

Binghamton University is a 4-year research institution located on a 930-acre campus in New York state and is ranked #32 in Top Public Schools by US News & World Report. The university’s six schools offer 130 academic programs that provide research...

“…

The professors here are great! If you need help they are there for you. Often times students don't go to them so they really do want you to come to them or else they won't have anything to do during office hours.

” – Wendy from Brooklyn, NY
The University of Texas at Austin

A Public Ivy and space-grant institution, the University of Texas at Austin is one of nine academic universities in the UT system, and also the first. Founded in 1883 and home to 18 schools and colleges, it is one of the largest schools in the US but...

“…

I know you are hearing all about how big UT is and how big the classes are and how big campus is. All this might be a little intimidating and even scary for you! But no worries! There will certainly be one or two classes that you will have that are...

” – Lila from Houston, TX
California Institute of the Arts

The California Institute of the Arts is a private university that offers degree programs in visual and performing arts. CalArts offers degrees in more than 70 degree-granting programs in Art, Music, Dance, Theater, and Film, with all undergraduate...

“…

Really awesome if you know what you want. This university is all about the business, you don't want to muck around waiting for someone to tell you what you're going to do.

” – Marvin from Norwalk, CA
College of the Holy Cross

Founded by Jesuits, the College of the Holy Cross is a liberal arts college in Worcester and the oldest Roman Catholic school in New England. Holy Cross confers bachelor’s degrees in 30 academic fields of study and is also home to 10 student-designed...

“…

The academics at Holy Cross seem intense, and the students here study more than at most other colleges. With a Princeton Review academic rating of 98, only five other colleges and university's place above it. More than just pure academics, Holy Cross...

” – Kaylie from Ashburnham, MA
Stevens Institute of Technology

Situated on a hilltop across the river from New York City, the Stevens Institute of Technology is a technological and engineering university in northeast New Jersey. Stevens is home to four schools conferring bachelor’s degrees in 35 academic majors...

“…

Stevens provides a challenge, yet most of the learning is practical or hands on. I feel exceptionally prepared for real world work in the future!

” – Angela from Sparta, NJ
California State University-Long Beach

California State University-Long Beach is a public institution and the most applied-to campus in the 23 campus CSU system. The university is home to eight schools, with a majority of students attending the College of Business and the College of...

“…

I had a great orientation group my freshman year which taught me all the ins and outs of this place. The teachers here seem to have a real passion for their subject area. They're always available during their office hours and attempt to make their...

” – K. Lamb from Huntington Beach, CA