Find answers here to frequently asked questions regarding admission to Boston Conservatory at Berklee. Please review admissions-related frequently asked questions regarding Berklee’s response to COVID-19.
If you cannot find the answer to your question here or within our website, please email the Admissions Office and the staff will be happy to help. To request information, submit the Request Information form.
How do I apply?
When is the application deadline?
Can I mail my résumé?
Do you require the SAT or ACT?
What should I do about transcripts if I have been home-schooled?
How many applications are received each year?
Do you have a wait list?
How do I schedule an audition?
Applicants schedule their own audition through the application portal under My Events, unless the program requires a pre-screen. Instructions and next steps will be sent via email within 24 hours of application submission.
How can I change or cancel my audition?
If you need to change or cancel your audition, simply log back in to the application portal, scroll down to My Events and update your registration to sign up for a new event.
Please note that audition dates and times are subject to change. You will be notified in the event of any changes to your audition.
Check the portal regularly if you do not see your desired date and location, as audition slots can reopen. Please contact the Auditions Office at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.
Do you require preliminary screening (pre-screen) materials before a live audition?
We require pre-screen materials for select programs. Please view the audition requirements for your intended program to see if a pre-screen is required before you can sign up for a live audition.
When will I receive the results of my pre-screen recording?
Read more about pre-screen deadlines and notification here. We encourage applicants to submit their pre-screen sooner for earlier consideration. If you are invited for a live audition or interview, you will then be given instructions for how to sign up for a specific date and time.
Can I double major or minor at Boston Conservatory at Berklee?
Do you have minors at Boston Conservatory at Berklee?
Conservatory students may complete minor programs of study through integrated course offerings with Berklee College of Music. Minors available include Acoustics and Electronics, Africana Studies, Creative Entrepreneurship, Dance, English, Gender Studies, Psychology, and more. Read more about minors here.
Is there part-time enrollment?
We do not offer part-time enrollment, except in the graduate music education programs.
Can I apply to multiple programs?
All applicants who intend on applying to multiple degree programs within the Conservatory must submit a complete and separate application and audition for each program to which they are applying. If admitted to two programs, students must choose one program in which to enroll by the deposit deadline, as students are permitted to enroll in only one program at a time. Students are not permitted to pursue a double major. Applying to multiple programs will not increase an applicant's chance of admission.
Can I apply to both Berklee College of Music and Boston Conservatory?
You may apply to and audition for both Berklee College of Music and Boston Conservatory at Berklee. These are separate processes and require separate audition criteria and application fees. If accepted to both schools, you must choose to enroll in one. You may, however, cross-register for open classes at both schools once enrolled. Individuals have access to a diverse yet inclusive network of students, faculty, and alumni within the Conservatory, and have access to an even greater network within the Berklee community and Boston at large. The unique structure of Boston Conservatory at Berklee allows students highly personalized training at the Conservatory in addition to the creative resources throughout Berklee.
Can I be readmitted after a leave of absence?
Students seeking readmission after an official leave of absence of less than two semesters must contact the Registrar to re-enroll. These students are not required to complete an application or re-audition. Students seeking readmission after an official leave of absence of more than two semesters must complete a new application and re-audition. Students seeking readmission without an official leave of absence must submit a new application and re-audition.
Do you offer a bachelor’s degree in music education?
Our music education program is a graduate program only. Read more about the music education degree program.
Do you have degree programs in theater education, technical theater, or producing/directing?
The newest degree program, contemporary theater, offers students the opportunity to create, workshop, perform, and tour their original works. Students in the contemporary theater program will be expected to direct as part of their curriculum and have the chance to immerse themselves in the practice if they choose.
What type of liberal arts courses will I be taking?
Liberal arts classes are based in the arts and humanities, social sciences, math, and science. Read more about liberal arts.
Campus Visit Questions
When are your tours?
Tours are offered Monday through Friday throughout the year, except on holidays and breaks between semesters. All tours are by appointment only and can be scheduled through our campus visit registration page, or in the application portal under My Events.
Can I meet with faculty or take a lesson?
If you would like to connect with a faculty member, please contact the respective department chair listed below. Visit our faculty listing to learn more about our faculty.
For instrumental inquiries, please contact Chair of Instrumental Studies Matthew Marsit
For composition inquiries, please contact Chair of Composition and Contemporary Music Jonathan Bailey Holland
For voice inquiries (including classical and musical theater voice), please contact Chair of Voice Patty Thom
For dance inquiries, please contact Chair of Dance Mila Thigpen
- For theater inquiries, please contact Chair of Theater Patsy Collins Bandes
It is recommended to contact them at least two weeks prior to your visit. You are also encouraged to sign up for a campus tour in advance of visiting Boston.
Where can I find hotel accommodations for visit?
There are several hotels that are within walking distance of the Conservatory, or accessible by public transportation. Learn more about hotels in the area and discounted rates.
Acceptance and Deferral Questions
What are admissions decisions based on?
The most important part of your application is the audition. Next, the Board of Admissions takes a holistic approach in considering each student's academic performance and balances this with the needs of the incoming class to determine final admissions decisions.
Are decisions mailed or emailed?
All decisions will be sent electronically. You will receive an email when your decision is available online. Undergraduate notifications will be sent by April 1. Graduate notifications will be sent by March 15. Music education decisions are sent by late March. View more on the Deadlines page.
Can I defer admission?
The Conservatory cannot offer a spring (January) semester start for undergraduate students due to curricular structure. Graduate music students are eligible to request to defer their admission to the spring semester of the same academic year. If you are considering a deferral, we recommend that you first consult with your department chair to discuss the best course of action.
Only graduate music students are eligible to request to defer their admission to the spring.
Deferment requests are handled by the Admissions Office, and require approval from both the chair of the department and the assistant dean of admissions. If deferment is granted, the student is required to submit a tuition deposit, which guarantees them a spot in the next class with no requirement to re-audition or re-apply. If any scholarship was awarded to the student, that scholarship is guaranteed and locked in. Students may not appeal for additional aid at this time. If a request to defer is not granted, the applicant must re-apply and re-audition for the next fall in the usual timeline.
Can I apply for spring semester?
The Conservatory cannot offer a spring (January) semester start for undergraduate programs due to curricular structure. A spring start may be possible for select graduate majors, however. Graduate applicants interested in applying for a spring term should contact the Office of Admissions.
When will I be notified of fall enrollment?
Early Action applicants who have submitted an application by November 1 and completed an Early Action-eligible audition will be issued admissions decisions by January 31.
Regular Action applicants who have submitted an application by December 1 and have completed their audition will be issued admissions decisions on the following dates:
• March 15 for graduate applicants
• April 1 for undergraduate applicants
When do I need to notify Boston Conservatory of my decision to enroll?
Both Regular Action and Early Action applicants are required to notify Boston Conservatory at Berklee regarding their intent to enroll no later than April 15 for graduate candidates and May 1 for undergraduate candidates. This can be done by accepting your offer and paying the non-refundable tuition deposit in your application portal.
What if I submitted my application after the December deadline?
Applications submitted after the December deadline will be reviewed on a case-by-case, rolling basis and will continue until all openings are filled, or until June 1, whichever comes first.
Teacher studios are typically assigned over the summer by your Department Chair. If there is a particular teacher you wish to study with, and your enrollment would depend upon being placed in that teacher's studio, you are welcome to reach out to your Department Chair to see if they have space available or by when they would know.
You can find all Conservatory faculty bios and email addresses below:
Can I cross-register for classes in different divisions?
This is entirely up to the student’s credit load and the discretion of the faculty. Space is limited in many classes.
How many students attend Boston Conservatory?
We have approximately 860 students. We have 625 undergraduate students and 235 graduate students. There are 428 music majors, 141 dance majors, and 291 theater majors. The student-to-faculty ratio is 5:1.
Where do most of your students come from?
We enroll students from over 40 states and 35 countries, including but not limited to Asia, South America, and Europe.
How big is the incoming graduate music class?
We enroll between 90 to 100 new graduate music students.
How big is the freshman music class?
We enroll between 50 to 60 new freshman music students.
How big is the freshman dance class?
We enroll between 30 to 40 new dance students.
How big is the freshman musical theater class?
We enroll around 60 new students. These students are broken into core groups of 12 to 15 students. These core groups will take core musical theater classes together and then get placed into dance courses, which are assigned by skill level.
Financial Aid Questions
What is the annual tuition?
How are scholarships awarded?
All entering students are automatically considered for institutional scholarships as part of the admissions process when applying to Boston Conservatory at Berklee. There is no separate application for institutional scholarship consideration. Scholarships are based on audition and application materials and are competitive. Not all accepted students receive scholarship.
Do you have graduate assistantships?
A limited number of assistantships are available to accepted, enrolling graduate students in the Music Division only. Graduate music assistantships are only available in music history (not theory). Students are assigned two to four undergraduate labs per semester. Pay is approximately $10/hour, allowing students to earn up to $1,000 to 2,000 per semester. These assistantships do not reduce tuition or waive fees. They are on-campus employment offered at orientation based on your performance in placement exams. For more information, please contact Jonathan Bailey Holland, chair of composition, contemporary music, and core studies.
Housing and Residential Life Questions
Do you accept undergraduate transfer students?
Boston Conservatory at Berklee accepts undergraduate transfer students for all majors except musical theater. Undergraduate musical theater students must attend the Conservatory for four years in order to complete their degree program. All other majors are considered undergraduate transfer students based on their completed college credits and placement audition. Please note, undergraduate musical theater students may receive liberal arts transfer credit, but will still need to spend four years at the Conservatory to complete the training curriculum. (This does not include contemporary theater.)
How many credits can transfer?
For liberal arts, the maximum amount of transfer credits allowed is 24. The overall maximum for transfer credits is 75, which include electives and other courses subject to departmental approval. If a student has enough transfer credits to cover required liberal arts credits, they are welcome to use the free room within their credit load to take electives of any kind, including additional liberal arts credits.
Do you accept AP Music Theory credits?
Not automatically. See below.
What types of courses cannot transfer?
Courses in music theory, ear training, and keyboard/piano skills are not eligible for transfer credit. Advanced Placement (AP) credit for these courses may be awarded by completing placement exams during orientation, only. Based on exam scores, students will be placed into the appropriate level course and awarded AP credits for the courses in which they tested out.
Can credits be awarded for scores earned in AP/CLEP CollegeBoard exams?
In many cases credits can be awarded. Please review the AP/CLEP Equivalency Guide for a list of AP and CLEP exams, required scores, and equivalent credits.
How many years would a student expect to be here?
Most transfer students attend the Conservatory for two to three years depending on the promotional jury at the end of their first semester and their approved transfer credits. Transfer student placement is also considered based on the student’s admissions audition.