Skip to main content

Julie Derges

Associate Professor of Music Education

Division Head of Music Education

Julie Derges (Music Education, Division Head) teaches undergraduate courses in elementary and secondary general music methods and graduate courses in music education research and pedagogy. Originally from central Illinois, she earned her Bachelor of Music Education degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and her master's and doctoral degrees in music education at Michigan State University. Dr. Kastner's research interests include informal and vernacular music learning in the lives of children and adolescents, identity, and music teacher professional development. Her work has been published in a variety of journals, including the International Journal of Music Education, Bulletin of the Council for Research in Music Education, Research Studies in Music Education, and the Orff Echo, and in three books: Oxford Handbook of Social Media and Music Learning, Oxford Online Handbook of Assessment in Music Education, and Learning from Young Children: Research in Early Childhood Music. Additionally, Dr. Kastner has presented her research at several national and international conferences, including the International Society for Music Education World Conference, Symposium on Music Teacher Education, and NAfME Music Research and Teacher Education National Conference. Dr. Kastner is also active providing professional development clinics and workshops. She has presented at TMEA, where she has twice been named the Texas Invited Clinician for Elementary Music, and provides workshops for area school districts and music teacher organizations around the Houston area. She is the President-Elect of the National Association of Music Education-Texas and a former Member-at-Large of the Executive Board. Prior to entering higher education, Dr. Kastner taught PreK-6 general music and choir in the Fairfax County Public Schools in Northern Virginia and early childhood music classes at the Levine School of Music in Washington, D.C. and the MSU Community Music School. She holds certifications in Music Learning Theory (Elementary I & II and Early Childhood I) and Orff-Schulwerk (Levels I-III). Dr. Kastner continues to teach music to children through an MSM outreach program called the Jay Marks Family Children's Music Outreach Initiative. She is passionate about providing playful, culturally relevant music learning experiences to support children's music growth and encourage lifelong music-making.