Piano Teacher Certificate Program

Program Information

The Piano Pedagogy Certificate Program offers a unique opportunity for area piano instructors wishing to enhance and update their skills in teaching and performance. This program is ideal for university music degree graduates who desire a piano teacher certificate, but who have completed a program without a pedagogical emphasis. (Maranatha students pursuing a 4-year B.A. or B.S. at Maranatha must choose a pedagogy major, minor, or concentration as opposed to the pedagogy certificate program.)

Maranatha’s Piano Pedagogy Certificate Program is designed to help students become well versed in analytically critiquing various piano methods, teaching and learning philosophies, child and adult developmental theories, piano technique approaches, and the many other aspects that are relevant to having a thriving music studio.

Furthermore, Maranatha piano pedagogy faculty members do not promote just one teaching philosophy, but rather they provide students with adequate tools and the knowledge needed to selectively choose the best from all possible approaches. The program is designed to develop professionals who are not only proficient in teaching elementary, intermediate, and early advanced levels of piano lessons (private and group), but are also actively involved in the profession (professional organizations).

Application Process

Email the following to the Director of Maranatha Piano Prep School:

  • Application: PDF Application
  • Recording: Record a Baroque or Classical piece and a Romantic or 20th Century piece. Email vimeo or youtube links.
  • Repertoire List: Email a list of intermediate and advanced repertoire studied.
  • Letter of Recommendation: Ask your current private lesson instructor to email a letter of recommendation directly to the Piano Prep School director.

Course Requirements (14 college credits)

Students enrolled in the Piano Pedagogy Certificate Program will enroll in the following courses through Maranatha as a guest student (unless the student is a Maranatha student). For course descriptions, please see the the catalog. To receive credit towards the Piano Pedagogy Certificate, students must earn a course grade of a C- or higher in the following courses. For credit hour tuition cost, please see the tuition cost per credit when taking less than 12 credits per semester (note: a music lab fee may also be assessed depending upon the course).

Required Courses (10 credits required)

  • FIPD 111 Piano Pedagogy 1 (2 credits) Fall Semesters Every Year
  • FIPD 211 Piano Pedagogy 2 (2 credits) Spring Semesters Even Years
  • FIPD 350 Piano Pedagogy 3 (2 credits) Fall Semesters Even Years OR FIPD 221 Keyboard Literature (2 credits) Spring Semesters Odd Years
  • FIMU 101 Basic Music Literature (3 credits) Online (Email) and Fall Semesters Every Year
  • FIPD 411 Piano Pedagogy Practicum (1 credit) Fall Semesters Every Year. Note: as a part of this course, students must obtain their National Certification through the MTNA.

Elective Courses (4 credits required)

  • FIMU 111 Aural Skills Foundations (2 credits)
  • FIMU 114 Harmony 1-must test out of Music Theory Fundamentals to enroll  (2 credits)
  • ELMU 311 Early Childhood Music and Movement-must complete Aural Skills to enroll (1-2 credits)
  • FISM 113 or 223 Hymnplaying Courses-must test out of HP1 to take HP2  (1-2 credits)
  • FIPD 311 Keyboard Ensembles (1 credit)
  • FIPD 221 Keyboard Literature-must complete Basic Music Lit and Piano Ped 2 to enroll (2 credits)
  • FIPD 350 Piano Pedagogy 3-must complete Piano Ped 1 to enroll (2 credits)

Other Requirements

Private Lessons

  • After being accepted, students must complete a minimum of four semesters of private lessons through Maranatha Piano Prep School.
  • Students must take lessons from a Maranatha Piano Prep School Faculty Member.
  • For info on enrolling for private lessons through Maranatha Piano Prep School, see the piano prep website.
  • Students must practice a minimum of 6 hours a week and complete minimum content requirements equivalent to that of a university music minor.
  • Students must pass a final at the end of every semester. The final needs to be a memorized classical piece and will be adjudicated by the student’s teacher and another faculty chosen by the teacher.

Keyboard Skills

  • Pass the test out requirements for Keyboard Skills I and II (see the test out section in the Music Department Handbook)
  • Students will be assessed a testing fee ($25.00)


  • Students need to complete two semesters of fieldwork before beginning the student teaching requirement (conference attendance, observations/co-teaching at Maranatha Piano Prep School, co-judging, etc.)
  • Each semester consists of 10 required hours.
  • No fee is assessed for fieldwork.

Student Teaching

  • Students need to complete two semesters of supervised  teaching through their own private studio.
  • Each semester, students will be assessed two months of lesson tuition at the supervising faculty member’s private lesson rate per semester of supervised teaching.
  • Students will meet with the prep school director for 15 minutes a week to discuss their teaching, lesson plans, and teaching recordings.

Additional Reading Requirements

Reading reports must be completed for the following books:

  • Intelligent Music Teaching by Robert Duke
  • A Piano Teacher’s Legacy – Selected Writings by Richard Chronister
  • The Success Factor in Piano Teaching: Making Practice Perfect by Elvina Pearce
  • The Perfect Wrong Note by William Westney
  • Practiceopedia by Philip Johnston
  • The Dynamic Studio by Philip Johnston
  • The Saavy Musician by David Cutler

Platform and Recital

  • Certificate students must pass a platform adjudicated by two piano faculty. The platform must include one piece from each musical period (memorization requirements will be determined by the teacher).
  • Students earning a high pass on their platform will be invited to perform their pieces in a recital.
  • Students performing a recital will be assessed a recital fee equivalent to one-fourth of an academic credit (payable to Maranatha Piano Prep School) to cover room rental/setup/tuning and program printing, etc.

Special Notes

  • The non-degree piano pedagogy certificate is conferred by Maranatha Piano Prep School (not Maranatha Baptist University).
  • The courses are registered through the college, and lessons are registered through the prep school.
  • Non-Maranatha students earning the certificate must register for classes as a guest student. Please contact Admissions.

More Questions? Please email Janet Tschida