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Master of Arts in Music Ministry (MAMM)

The Master of Arts in Music Ministry provides academic and professional preparation for leadership in the worship life of a congregation and in the use of music as a form of ministry outside of the church. You will study the role music has in the liturgy and life of a congregation, as well as the history, theory, and practice of music to prepare you for ministry.
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Nander Novaes
I chose to come to Garrett-Evangelical not only because of its strong theological foundation and its renowned faculty members, but also for the genuine love I felt from the very beginning of my application process. - Nander Novaes, MAMM

Why the MAMM?

Though similar to Master of Sacred Music programs, the Master of Arts in Music Ministry at Garrett-Evangelical is distinguished by its focus on theological formation and ministry. Along with strong musical formation, the MAMM gives you a solid theological and spiritual foundation to help you discern your vocational calling and equip you to serve in a variety of settings and capacities.

I chose Garrett-Evangelical because of its extramusical degree requirements. This seemingly extraneous coursework is serving me well as a worship leader, which I am finding requires so much more than just the ability to play my instrument well. My seminary training allows me to be better answer job demands like providing pastoral care, creating collaborative church programming, and even occasionally preaching! - Brielle Ocott

Benefit from the Northwestern University Bienen School of Music

Northwestern University Bienen School of MusicAs a MAMM student, you will have the opportunity to take courses in voice, conducting, composition, and more at the Northwestern University Bienen School of Music. The Bienen School of Music combines a nationally ranked music program of conservatory-level intensity with the academic rigor and scholarly resources found only at an elite private research university. You will also have access to more than 300,000 volumes of books, scores, sound recordings, and journals in the Northwestern University Music Library, one of the largest music collections in the United States.

Renowned Faculty Dedicated to the Practice of Music Ministry

Through the MAMM degree my ministerial capabilities have been broadened and my ability to lead worship has been greatly enhanced. This could only have happened because of the renowned and caring faculty in the area of liturgical studies at Garrett-Evangelical. - Rev. Emily Heitzman

Our diverse faculty bring a wealth of expertise and experience not only Garrett-Evangelical, but to the church and our global community. They are members and leaders in local, national, and global organizations, denominations, and societies. Outside of the classroom, you’ll find many of them preaching from the pulpit, conducting choirs, teaching Sunday School, organizing for the common good, and more. Students also have access to the music faculty in the Bienen School of Music at Northwestern University, especially those studying voice and conducting.

Our faculty in the area of liturgical studies include:

Rev. Dr. Ron AndersonRev. Dr. E. Byron (Ron) Anderson is the Ernest and Bernice Styberg Professor of Worship and Director of the Nellie B. Ebersole Program in Music Ministry at Garrett-Evangelical. An ordained elder in full connection in the Minnesota Conference of The United Methodist Church, Dr. Anderson has served in parish ministry as pastor, musician, and educator. He has written numerous articles, papers, book chapters, and books including Liturgy and the Moral Self (Liturgical Press, 1998) and Worship and Christian Identity: Practicing Ourselves (Liturgical Press/Pueblo Books, 2003). Dr. Anderson is a member of several professional associations including The American Guild of Organists, The Hymn Society of the United States and Canada, and The North American Academy of Liturgy.

Margaret McElwain Kemper, affiliate professor at Garrett-Evangelical and associate professor at Northwestern University, is a frequent organ recitalist both in the United States and abroad. Kemper is a past national president of the American Guild of Organists and is currently organist and director of music at the Presbyterian Homes in Evanston and on the organ faculty at the Music Institute of Chicago.  A Fulbright scholar with André Marchal in Paris, Kemper also studied with Arthur Carkeek at DePauw University in Greencastle, Indiana, and Barrett Spach at Northwestern, as well as with Marie-Claire Alain and Anton Heiller at the Academy for Organists in Haarlem, the Netherlands.

Discern Your Call and Hone Your Gifts in Field Education

Without exception, Garrett-Evangelical graduates point to their field education experience as key to their seminary education. As a MAMM student, you will complete one year of field education where you will further hone your musical skills, reflect on your vocational identity, and gain practical music ministry experience. Learn more about our field education program at

Affording Your Education

One Student. One Scholarship.

At Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, every master’s degree student receives a scholarship. Scholarships are available for full-time and part-time students and are designed with an eye toward your passion and our mission. Scholarships range from 25% of tuition up to 100% of tuition with stipends and each year we award over $2.5 million in scholarship aid. To learn more about all of our scholarship opportunities, please visit

The priority application deadline for scholarship consideration is February 1st of each year. There is no separate scholarship application. 

The Margaret McElwain Kemper Music Ministry Scholarship

In recognition of her outstanding leadership in music ministry, Garrett-Evangelical has established the Margaret McElwain Kemper Music Ministry Scholarship. The purpose of this scholarship is to provide financial assistance to deserving students who wish to pursue a calling to music ministry, particularly those seeking a concentration in organ.

Degree Requirements

The Master of Arts in Music Ministry is a 50-credit hour program. Students have the option to take 3-9 additional hours to complete denominational ordination requirements if needed. This degree is most often completed in two years for students enrolled full time.

Organ Performance Concentration

The organ remains a vital musical and spiritual component of countless congregations across the world. There is a growing need for talented organists who have both musical skills and an understanding of the spiritual and theological significance of church music. The Organ Performance concentration within the Master of Arts in Music Ministry program will refine your skills as an organist while also giving you a solid theological and spiritual foundation for ministry.


Music Ministry Project

The Master of Arts in Music Ministry degree includes a final project that has two components. The first component emphasizes musical “performance” in which the student demonstrates his or her musical skills in a liturgical or recital context. The second emphasizes critical reflection on the work and practice of music ministry.


UMC Music Ministry Certification

Garrett-Evangelical works in partnership with The United Methodist Church to provide the necessary courses for certification in music ministry. MAMM students who would like to be certified by The United Methodist Church can concurrently complete the certification course requirements with their degree.


Online Learning

While we honor the traditional methods of instruction and rich heritage of academia, we also embrace non-traditional methods such as online learning and hybrid classes. The maximum number of courses which may be taken in an online format is 1/2 of the degree. Students receiving advanced standing or transfer can take no more than 1/2 of remaining credits toward the degree in an online format. Students seeking ordination should check with the appropriate church authorities to see if there are more specific guidelines that must be met.

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Dual Degree Options

Contact our Admissions Office at for more information on how to do a dual degree at Garrett-Evangelical.

Master of Divinity and Master of Arts

Students can round out their Master of Arts degree with the Master of Divinity degree. The MDiv/MA allows students to become specialists in the area of their MA degree while broadening their theological, spiritual, and leadership foundations through the Master of Divinity. You can learn more about the MDiv degree at

Admission Requirements

  • Bachelor degree in music from an accredited college or university
  • An undergraduate grade point average of at least 2.5 on a 4.0 scale
  • Proficiency in the English language
  • Applicants for the Organ Performance concentration must also audition prior to admission

Admission Process

Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis. The Admissions Committee reserves the right to determine, in its sole judgment, whether an applicant is a suitable candidate for a specific degree program or for the vocation that the program represents. International student applications are due by March 1st.

The priority application deadline for scholarship consideration is February 1st. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, our Fall 2020 priority deadline for admission and scholarships has been extended to August 1, 2020.