Music Lessons

CSA COVID-19 Update Fall 2020 – Spring 2021

We will be offering a variety of programs in person and online for the 2020-2021 school year. All in-person events will strictly adhere to the safety measures outlined by the University and the NIU School of Music. All participants must comply with these safety guidelines for CSA Events until further notice.

Due to the ever-changing nature of the COIVD-19 events, we have updated our refund policy. Please be sure to familiarize yourself with the changes and contact us with questions prior to registration.

Get the latest campus updates related to COVID-19.

We offer one-on-one music instruction for students of all ages. A teacher who is sensitive to student's learning style, interests and goals will create an opportunity for enjoyment and success in music making. Our teachers help students master their instrument and gain skills in areas such as sight-reading, ear training and theory. We also offer a performance opportunity for all students at our end of semester showcase recitals.

  • Lesson frequency: Once a week (14 lessons in fall and spring, six in summer)
  • Length: 30, 45 or 60 minutes
  • Location: Music Building, rooms will be assigned for in person lessons. Online lessons are also available.

We also offer semi-private lessons, allowing you to share lesson time and cost with another student of a similar skill level. These lessons must be a minimum of 45 minutes.

Fall lessons begin the week of August 24 and end the week of December 12, and Spring lessons begin the week of January 18 and end the week of May 15.

Arranging Lessons

Fill out a registration form, indicating the teacher you'd like to work with.

If you don't have a teacher in mind, read our teacher biographies. If you're still not sure, indicate the level of teacher you prefer on the registration form, and we will make the assignment.

If you'd like more information about a teacher or do not see a teacher for your instrument, call us at 815-753-1450 for assistance.

After we receive your registration form, your teacher will call you to discuss scheduling lessons.

At the first lesson, the teacher will meet you at the elevator on the north side (Lucinda Avenue) of the Music Building and accompany your child to a practice room. You may choose to escort your child to and from the practice room.


We have recitals at the end of the fall and spring semesters. Students taking private lessons are not required to perform at a recital, though they're encouraged to do so.

Some teachers have their own recitals. They do their best to schedule these recitals to accommodate everyone's schedule. Students who are unable to attend their teacher's recital are welcome to participate in the Showcase Recitals in fall and spring.

Check our calendar to see upcoming recitals.

Lesson Cost

The cost of your lessons depends on your teacher's level.

Fall/Spring Semesters

14 Private Lessons
Fall Only/Spring Only
28 Private Lessons
Level 30 Min 45 Min 60 Min 30 Min 45 Min 60 Min
Apprentice 1 $248 $372 $496 $496 $744 $992
Apprentice 2 $260 $390 $520 $520 $780 $1,040
Apprentice 3 $290 $435 $580 $580 $870 $1,160
Associate $408 $612 $816 $816 $1,224 $1,632
Faculty $502 $753 $1,004 $1,004 $1,506 $2,008

Summer Semester (six private online lessons)

Level 30 Minutes 45 Mintues 60 Mintues
Apprentice I $106 $159 $212
Apprentice II $111 $167 $222
Apprentice III $124 $186 $248
Associate $175 $263 $350
Faculty $216 $324 $430

Lesson Policies

School Closure for Weather

Teachers and students may cancel a lesson because of weather conditions at their own discretion and should be in contact with each other if weather conditions prevent travel. Lessons and classes may be rescheduled by the teacher later in the semester, time permitting.

Make Up Lesson Policy

One make up lesson is allowed each semester for excused absences (illness, family emergency or religious observances), provided at least 24 hours (or as much notice as possible) is given. Sporting practices and events, family vacations and doctor appointments are not considered excused absences. It is recommended that students keep a record of all lessons attended.

Teacher Absence

If a teacher is unable to teach a lesson or class, he or she will inform the student(s) at least 24 hours in advance to reschedule the lesson or class.

Children’s Safety

NIU buildings are open to the public. Young children should be supervised at all times; older children should be picked up promptly after lessons and classes and should not wander through the buildings. There are no longer pay telephones in the music or art buildings. However, there is a phone that can be used for local calls only (free) on the west wall of the concert hall hallway in the music building.

Contact Us

College of Visual and Performing Arts
Office of External Programs

Music Building 132

Kristin Sherman

Join Our CSA Mailing List

Online Office Hours

Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
(lunch from noon – 1 p.m.)

To protect the safety of our staff, students and families, we will operate remotely for the fall semester. Our staff will be available at their remote offices during normal NIU business hours and can be contacted via phone or email.

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