Examining Music Education in Countries with the Highest Graduation Rates

December 1, 2018 / By: Katie Thies

The fact that we live in a globalized society means that comparisons among countries are inevitable. One of the areas that draws interest and media attention is the graduation rates of students. Recent data indicates that secondary schools with a music program have higher graduation rates. The purpose of this paper is to examine music education in countries with strong graduation rates and explore their offerings in music education. Specifically, the paper will focus on four countries: Finland, Portugal, Japan, and the United States. Finland, Portugal, and Japan were selected because they had the highest average graduation rates in the years 2010-2015. The comparisons provide insights into the number of hours of music education offered in each country as well as specific curricular implications. It is hoped that these findings can promote the growth of music education programs in the United States.