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What Can You Do With a Degree in Music History?

Updated on September 13, 2014
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Museum Technicians

Museum technicians, also known as registrars, work in museums where they help to acquire, record, maintain and exhibit collections, and they also clean such items as statues, coins and other artifacts. Museum technicians also assist with selecting the exhibit themes and designs. In addition, they coordinate and conduct museum tours and workshops, and also promote their museums at civic events and meetings. A degree in music history provides museum technicians with a solid historical background, which can prove invaluable in this type of setting. The median annual wage for museum technicians was $44,330, according to May 2013 salary data.

Music Journalists

Music journalists can be music writers, music reviewers or music critics. They may review concerts and other types of musical performances, or write about album releases and music videos. Some music journalists work for local newspapers, magazines, TV stations, websites and other news outlets while others may be national or international writers. In addition to writing reviews, music journalists may also interview performers. Those with a degree in music history have an advantage because of their extensive musical knowledge, especially when chronicling the history of a particular music genre. Music journalists earned a median annual wage of $66,160, according to May 2013 wage estimates.

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Music Teachers

By supplementing their degree in music history with education courses and a teaching certificate, some graduates become music teachers in elementary or high school. These teachers have several students to whom they teach the fundamentals of music and advanced music theory. Some private teachers may conduct one-on-one or group classes in their home, or they may rent a studio or some other type of facility. A degree in music history provides music teachers with a strong foundation in music theory and musicianship, which assists them in teaching students. May 2013 wage estimates list the median annual wage of music teachers in elementary, middle school and high school students as $56,420. Music teachers at post-secondary schools earned a median annual wage of $72,630.

Concert Promoters

Graduates interested in the business-side of music might enjoy working as a concert promoter. These individuals handle various aspects of a concert, such as the location, the type of venue, and who will headline the concert. The concert promoter also manages the budget, decides where to advertise the concert and handles interviews and press conferences. While a formal education is not required to pursue a career as a concert promoter, CareersinMusic.com notes that those with a background in music have a better chance of getting hired. The site also states that some concert promoters earn more than $100K a year. Whether a concert is successful or not plays a key role in determining how much a concert promoter will get paid.

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