Skip to main content

How to Apply

Collegiate Apply / Request Information

A photo of a student raising her hand at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music

We are excited to hear you!

Application Timeline

Spring 2024

  • September 20 - Application opens*
  • November 1 - Application deadline
  • November 13-20 - Auditions
  • November 30 - Admission decisions released
  • December 8 - Applicant response deadline

*Not all programs accept applications for Spring 2024. Please visit the Auditions page for details.

Fall 2024

  • September 20 - Application opens
  • December 1 - Application deadline**
  • December 21 - Prescreen invites and denies sent
  • January to March - Auditions
  • March 20 - Admission decisions released
  • April 1 - Financial aid statements released
  • April 15 - Graduate and postgraduate admission response deadline
  • May 1 - Undergraduate admission response deadline

**Some programs require prescreening recordings with the application deadline. Please visit the Auditions page for details.

Requirements and Materials

Please review the audition requirements for your specific area of study. Requirements are different for each program. Spring and Fall 2024 applicants who are unable to attend a live audition at SFCM are especially encouraged to book sample lessons and/or phone calls with faculty they listed as a preference in the application to supplement their recordings or interview.

A non-refundable $100 application fee must be paid by credit card to submit the application. Exceptions include:

  • Current students and alumni of the SFCM collegiate, continuing education, and pre-college divisions will have the fee automatically fully waived.
  • Applicants being considered for the Denis de Coteau Fellowship will also have the fee automatically fully waived.
  • Applicants who register and attend an in-person campus tour or college fair with SFCM will have the fee automatically fully waived.
  • Counselors for current high school students may submit the NACAC Request for Admission Application Fee Waiver form. Note that this completed form must come directly from the high school counselor to SFCM via email.
  • Applicants who demonstrate high need and do not qualify for the fee waivers listed above may complete the Application Fee Waiver Request Form linked on the first page of the application to be considered for an application fee waiver or reduction.

All application fee waiver requests must be submitted before November 28 in order to be processed in time for the December 1 deadline.

All applicants are required to submit two letters of recommendation. For performance applicants, one recommendation must be from the applicant's current private music teacher or ensemble director. For TAC and Composition applicants who have not studied privately, please include at least one recommender who can speak about your musical abilities. Additional recommenders may be anyone who can speak in regards to your work ethic and character; they do not need to be within a music field.

An email with detailed instructions for completing the recommendation form will be sent to each individual recommender as soon as the applicant enters their contact information in the application. Recommendations must be submitted electronically through the recommendation form. A recommender may submit their recommendation form whether the applicant has submitted the application yet or not.

Recommendations should be received no later than January 10 and must be received through the recommendation form link.

Unofficial transcripts must be submitted with the application before December 1. These should be uploaded in the "Academic History" section of the application, and may be a screenshot of an online portal or a PDF of a paper copy. If you are admitted and decide to attend, you will be responsible for submitting an original copy of your final official transcripts to the Office of Admissions no later than July 1. Final official transcripts are in English, indicate a degree has been completed, contain an official seal or signature, have a cumulative GPA on the USA 4.0 scale, and come to SFCM directly from the institution via email, a secure online system, or post. Students completing their degrees after July 1 must contact the Office of Admissions prior to the deadline.

  • Undergraduate applicants: Submit transcripts from all high schools attended. Home-schooled applicants are required to submit either an official transcript issued by an accredited institution, or the diploma from the GED or CHSPE.
  • Undergraduate transfer applicants: Submit all high school and college transcripts.
  • Graduate and postgraduate applicants: Submit all college transcripts. SFCM does not require your high school transcripts.
  • International students must provide notarized course-by-course translations of their final official transcripts if the originals are not issued in English. The Office of Admissions may require that international transcripts be evaluated by an organization specializing in foreign credential evaluation, such as Educational Credential Evaluators, Inc. (, World Education Services (, or Spantran.


All applicants must submit responses to the following writing prompts:

  • Please describe your career goals and how you envision attending SFCM will enable you to achieve these ambitions. (300-500 words)
  • At SFCM, we bring people together to better the lives of others through music. Describe one way in which you have contributed to your community, whether in your family, the classroom, your neighborhood, etc. (300-500 words)

All applicants must submit a self-recorded video responding to the following prompt within the application:

  • Who is an artist you admire and how have they influenced your art? (60 seconds or fewer)

Note that this video submission does not have an affect on admission. It is for the faculty to get to know you better.

Applicants for Technology and Applied Composition and the String and Piano Chamber Music program have additional writing prompts. Please visit the audition pages for more information.

Admitted undergraduate applicants with a GPA less than 2.5 (4.0 scale) and graduate and postgraduate applicants with a GPA less than 3.0 (4.0 scale) at their previous institution are offered admission to the Conservatory with Academic Probation status. In order to have the probation status removed, these students will need to maintain the minimum GPA requirements during their first year.

Please reference the Transcripts section above for information regarding what is required to submit an application. The details below are additional requirements.

  • Undergraduate Applicants
    • Home-schooled applicants must submit official SAT or ACT scores to support transcripts. The Conservatory's school code for SAT is 4744; the code for the ACT is 0403. SFCM will accept scores as official if they are listed on the student's official school transcript.
    • Transfer students wishing to transfer to the Conservatory from another institution must show evidence of a satisfactory academic record at all institutions of higher education and secondary schools attended, and are required to submit official transcripts from all of the institutions attended. Admitted transfer students will receive a transfer year assessment from the Office of Academic Affairs following the release of their admission decision.
    • SFCM grants credit for certain AP and IB (International Baccalaureate) exams. These test scores must be uploaded in the application. Please visit the Transfer Information page for more details.
  • Graduate and Artist Diploma Applicants
    • Applicants for Graduate and Artist Diploma programs must hold a bachelor's degree from an accredited college, university, or conservatory in order to attend SFCM. We accept applications from students with a degree in an area other than music. The Conservatory will not accept any transfer credit at the graduate level.
  • Postgraduate Applicants
    • Applicants for the Postgraduate programs must hold both a bachelor's and master's degree from accredited colleges, universities, or conservatories in order to attend SFCM. We accept applications from students with a degree in an area other than music. The Conservatory will not accept any transfer credit at the postgraduate level.