orchestra with conductor
What does it cost?

Check out our cost calculator or visit student financial services for information on estimated costs.

How long will it take?

Minimum of 36 semester hours of graduate coursework must be completed in 4 semesters (2 years)

Where can I take classes?
Atlanta Campus

Am I required to take classes at a specific location?
Atlanta Campus

Application Deadlines View Admissions Requirements

  • Spring – November 15 (All concentrations except Conducting)
  • Summer – March 1 (Music Education concentration and non-degree programs only)
  • Fall – June 1 (All concentrations)

Master of Music, Concentration in Jazz Studies, M.Mu.

Graduate Director
Dr. Lara Saville Dahl
[email protected]

The Georgia State University Jazz Studies concentration offers a comprehensive approach to developing competence in jazz performance, improvisation and knowledge of jazz history. It also equips students with professional skills in establishing and maintaining high school or college-level jazz programs while nurturing their creative talents in jazz arranging and composing.

The program provides valuable opportunities for students to engage in quality jazz organizations, including large jazz bands and jazz combos. Furthermore, students will enhance their playing by participating in academic jazz courses such as jazz improvisation, jazz arranging and jazz pedagogy, among others. This integrated approach ensures a well-rounded jazz education and fosters both practical and academic growth in the field.

We offer jazz studies degrees in the following areas:

  • Instrumental
  • Voice
  • Piano

Program Highlights

Invaluable Opportunities

The Jazz Studies program at Georgia State provides opportunities for students to participate in quality jazz organizations such as large jazz bands and jazz combos.

The School of Music provides once-in-a-lifetime experiences with opportunities to perform alongside jazz industry titans such as Tom Scott, Miguel Zenon, Etienne Charles and many more.

Jazz band playing

Jazz band performing

Vibrant Downtown Music Scene

GSU’s downtown Atlanta location fosters connections with local music ensembles and venues, like Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, Red Light Cafe, City Winery, Atlanta Opera, nearby theaters, schools and churches.

Alumni, faculty and students participate in the thriving music scene, performing in various professional groups within the city.

Career Outlook

A jazz studies degree from Georgia State University equips graduates with the necessary skills and knowledge to pursue diverse and rewarding careers within the dynamic and vibrant music industry.
Performer: You can work as a professional jazz musician, either as a solo artist or as part of a band or ensemble. You might perform at jazz clubs, festivals, concerts, private events or even become a session musician for recording studios.

Music Educator: Many jazz studies graduates go on to become music educators, teaching jazz and other music-related courses at various levels, from elementary to college. You could work in public or private schools, community music schools or offer private lessons.

Composer/Arranger: Your jazz studies degree can lead you to become a composer or arranger, creating original jazz compositions or arranging existing music for jazz ensembles, big bands or orchestras.

Group of jazz performers playing

Program Details

Please note: You must apply to both the Georgia State Graduate School and the School of Music.

Required University Application Materials:

  • Transcript(s): Upload unofficial copies of transcripts from all undergraduate and graduate institutions attended. The institution logo and your name must be present on the copies. Official transcripts will be required upon acceptance into the program.
  • Official TOEFL/IELT Scores (international applicants only): Institutional code 5251 should be used for reporting TOEFL scores.
  • Personal/Goal Statement: Please provide a statement of your educational and career goals (be as specific as possible).
  • Resume/Curriculum Vitae: Upload within the online Slate application.
  • Writing Sample: Provide a scholarly/research paper on a subject in the field of music of a level of intellectual and critical engagement appropriate to graduate-level work.
  • Letters of recommendation: 2 letters of recommendation are required. Applicants must enter the names and contact information of the 2 recommenders within the application. An electronic recommendation request will be sent to recommenders, and recommendation letters must be submitted via this request. It is strongly advised that letters of recommendation are completed before the application deadline and are written within the last year. Recommendations submitted after this date are not guaranteed to be reviewed.
  • GPA: Students considered for admission into the graduate program generally have a GPA of 3.0 or higher.

Get started on the Graduate School Application.

School of Music Application Materials: Complete the “Start an Application” fields to view your specific application and audition requirements for the School of Music

Applicants must have a Bachelor of Music degree. Applicants without a Bachelor of Music degree will be considered by the graduate committee on a case-by-case basis. All graduate applicants will be considered for a graduate assistantship (except for Low-Residency Conducting MM applicants) based on their audition, their application materials and their academic transcripts.

The Master of music in Jazz Studies concentration at Georgia State University offers a comprehensive and immersive curriculum for aspiring jazz musicians seeking to deepen their knowledge and skills. Students in this program engage in a range of courses that cover jazz theory, improvisation, composition, arranging, history and performance. Through individualized instruction, ensemble participation and performance opportunities, students refine their technical proficiency, improvisational abilities and stylistic versatility. The program places a strong emphasis on collaborative learning, encouraging students to engage in ensemble interactions and develop their unique artistic voice. Students also have the opportunity to work with renowned jazz faculty and guest artists, further enhancing their musical growth. Graduates of our Jazz Studies program emerge as accomplished jazz musicians, equipped with the expertise and artistic vision to thrive in professional jazz performance, composition, arranging or teaching careers.

For detailed requirements, see the course catalog.

At Georgia State, we understand that students come to our institution from a range of financial backgrounds. We value the investment our students make in their education, and we aim to provide access to scholarships and aid opportunities that can support students through their academic journey.

Learn more about tuition rates or use Georgia State’s cost calculator to determine the investment required for your course of study.


There is an applied music fee of $350 per semester for a one-hour (8000 level) lesson and $200 per semester for a half-hour (6000 level) lesson. Additional lab fees for certain courses may apply.

The Georgia State School of Music provides unparalleled opportunities to study and work among an inspiring community of musicians in one of America’s most vibrant urban centers. Students receive exceptional training, are provided with meaningful opportunities and begin serious careers no matter what type of music drives their passion. The goals and outcomes from a graduate degree include:

  • Ensuring comprehensive exposure to an array of perspectives as represented by the various faculty approaches to music performance, music history, music theory and teaching styles.
  • Honoring the continuing traditions of music making and pedagogy while exploring new forms and contemporary issues within the various musical fields.
  • Developing pedagogical skills and strategies through teaching assistantships for undergraduate-level courses.
  • Preparing students for a professional career in music through rigorous performance preparation, exposure to important repertoire and attention to practical business aspects of various musical careers.


Graduate Director
Dr. Lara Saville Dahl
[email protected]

Administrative Specialist, Graduate
[email protected]

School of Music
75 Poplar St, 5th floor
Atlanta, GA 30303

College of the Arts Logo35 Broad St., 4th Floor
Atlanta, GA 30303