What are Professional Development Levels Courses?

Professional Development Levels Courses (PDLC) differ from workshops. Students who enroll in a PDLC program have an active role. They are responsible for learning the material offered, for teaching with a high degree of competence, and for demonstrating their understanding of the methods by peer teaching and writing lesson plans. GIML offers PDLCs in the following areas:

Interested in taking a PDLC?


Who Should Attend?

Early childhood, elementary, middle and high school music teachers, piano teachers, professional performers, and music education students who are interested in furthering their understanding of audiation and enhancing their teaching through an audiation approach. The framework for all classes in the PDLCs will be provided by music learning theory, developed by Dr. Edwin E. Gordon. Unique practical application of the theory and its use in early childhood, general and instrumental music, and piano will be presented by faculty who are experienced in teaching classes based on music learning theory.

Are you a college/university faculty member interested in learning more about Dr. Gordon's Music Learning Theory and incorporating it into your teaching of future music educators? Are you interested in attending one of our summer Professional Development Learning Courses (PDLCs) for free, paying only travel/housing/food costs? See below for information about The Carol Gordon Gordon Professional Development Scholarship, a great opportunity to learn more about MLT, and share it with your music education students.

Do I Need to Prepare?

Advance preparation is absolutely necessary to complete the PDLCs. Before enrolling for Level 1, participants should be able to sing rote songs in a variety of tonalities and meters and chant in a variety of meters. Participants should also be able to sing tonal patterns in major and minor tonalities with tonal solfege and chant rhythm patterns in usual duple and triple meters with rhythm solfege as demonstrated on the Tonal and Rhythm Skills Development CD available through GIA Publications. It is extremely important that students be familiar with all of the reading and teaching materials prior to arrival at the PDLC; please see the Books and Materials section for a list of publications and ordering information.

Costs to Participate

GIML strives to keep our workshop fees low and commensurate with other professional organizations. You can expect the following financial requirements to attend a PDLC.

  • Tuition is $750, which includes a non-refundable $100 deposit and $650 GIML course fee. Purchasing college credit would be an additional cost, and is subject to each individual institution's credit cost.  
  • Travel/lodging/food costs
  • Course materials

Interested in Hosting a PDLC?

GIML is always looking for new places to host PDLCs. If your public school, college or university is interested in hosting a PDLC, please download the Site Manager's Handbook below. When you click on the link, Google will ask you to make a copy of the file in your own Drive. Note: Site plans for PDLCs are due by the end of October each year.  

Interested in hosting a PDLC?


The Carol Gordon Professional Development Scholarship

The Carol Gordon Professional Development Scholarship was created by the Gordon Institute forMusic Learning to honor Carol Goodridge Beccue Gordon’s contributions to Music Learning Theory. The purpose of this scholarship is to advance the mission of GIML through supporting university faculty interested in learning more about Gordon’s Music Learning Theory and incorporating it into their teaching of future music educators.

Ed and Carol Gordon


1. Must be a college/university music faculty teaching general music, instrumental, or choral methods courses within a music education program.

2. Must be a first-time attendee of a GIML Professional Development Course.

3. Must complete application form.


Each scholarship will cover 100% of the course registration and tuition fees (approximately $650). Scholarship recipients are responsible for the cost of housing (if applicable), transportation, meals, required workshop materials, and optional additional tuition for graduate credits. The number of scholarships provided each year will depend on availability of funds and sites each year.


Final selection of the scholarship winner(s) will be decided by the Executive Board of the GordonInstitute of Music Learning. No member of the GIML Executive Board, or his or her immediate family, is eligible for scholarship assistance during his or her tenure on the Executive Board.


The Education Committee Chair will notify the chosen scholarship recipient(s) of the Executive Board's decision. The scholarship payment will be made upon verification of applicant’s attendance at the selected Professional Development course. Payment will be made to the Gordon Institute for Music Learning. The scholarship recipient should submit to GIML a one-page follow-up statement in which he or she reflects on his or her experiences in the course and the ways in which he or she expects these experiences to impact future teaching.

If you have questions or would like more information about GIML professional development levels and/or the scholarship, please contact Heather Shouldice and Jenny Fisher, GIML Education Commission Co-Chairs, at professionaldevelopment@giml.org. To be considered for one of these scholarships, please complete and submit the application form by May 15, 2024. Scholarship applications will be reviewed by the GIML Executive Board. Recipients will be selected based on application clarity and site enrollment availability and notified of decision by May 31, 2024.