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International Student Requirements

Collegiate Apply / Request Information

International Student Requirements

Collegiate Apply / Request Information

a cellist with her instrument on the rooftop of bowes

Daniela Gonzales Siu.

Drawn from around the globe, our students contribute to a rich mixture of ideas, talents, customs, and backgrounds in a collaborative environment. Within a total collegiate student body numbering around 450, students hail from 34 countries, and speak more than 20 languages. Approximately 40 percent of our students are international.

English Language Proficiency Requirements

The summary below includes information regarding applying to the Conservatory as a non-native English speaker for Spring and Fall 2024. Spring semester applicants will be guided on exact deadlines individually, but score requirements are the same.


International students whose first language is not English must submit an official English proficiency score report, either TOEFL (not At-Home) or IELTS (not Indicator), from within the past 24 months with the application. It does not need to be a passing score for this deadline.

Students facing issues accessing TOEFL or IELTS in time for the December 1 application deadline may submit a Duolingo test with the application instead, but will be required to submit a TOEFL or IELTS test by March 1 in order to be considered for admission.

If an official score report for TOEFL or IELTS is not ready by the December 1 application deadline, please enter the scores within the application, include a screenshot, and have the official report sent to the Office of Admissions no later than January 1.

Exemption Requests
Non-native English speakers who have completed at least two years of full-time academic study at an English-speaking high school or college may request an exemption from the English proficiency score requirement by submitting the English Proficiency Waiver Request Form within the application. Only exemption requests submitted through the application will be considered.


If the score report submitted with the application does not meet the score requirements below, a student may be conditionally admitted until a passing score is attained by May 1. If the conditionally admitted student does not have a passing score submitted by May 1, they may petition for an extension that involves matriculation in an appropriate summer ELS Class, or equivalent collegiate level course as approved by the Office of Admissions. If the petition is not approved, the conditionally admitted student may defer admission until their score is passing for up to one academic year.

Test Score Requirements

Our school code is 4744. We accept the in-person TOEFL exam as a final official score. We do not accept MyBest scores as a final official score.

  • Technology and Applied Composition programs (all degrees and certificates): 80 iBT
  • Bachelor of Music: 71 iBT
  • Certificate: 61 iBT, preferred
  • Master of Music: 80 iBT
  • Advanced Certificate: 71 iBT, preferred
  • Professional Studies Certificate in Instrumental Performance: 61 iBT, preferred
  • Professional Studies Certificate in Historical Performance: 61 iBT, preferred
  • Professional Studies Certificate in RJAM Performance: 80 iBT
  • Artist Diploma: 80 iBT


We accept the in-person IELTS exam as a final official score.

  • Technology and Applied Composition programs (all degrees and certificates): 6.5 IELTS
  • Bachelor of Music: 6.0 IELTS
  • Certificate: 5.5 IELTS, preferred
  • Master of Music: 6.5 IELTS
  • Advanced Certificate: 6.0 IELTS, preferred
  • Professional Studies Certificate in Instrumental Performance: 5.5 IELTS, preferred
  • Professional Studies Certificate in Historical Performance: 5.5 IELTS, preferred
  • Professional Studies Certificate in RJAM Performance: 6.5 IELTS
  • Artist Diploma: 6.5 IELTS

3+2 Collegiate Program

SFCM has a 3+2 program with the Xinghai Conservatory of Music in Guangzhou, China. Students at the Xinghai Conservatory must apply for the 3+2 program in the first semester of their third year. Those approved for the program must still complete the full application and audition process for the two-year Master of Music program at SFCM. Acceptance into the Master of Music program is not guaranteed. Program acceptance, studio assignment, English proficiency, and scholarship granting will all be determined using the same deadlines and requirements as detailed on our How to Apply page and listed above. Applicants with questions regarding their 3+2 program should reach out to

Equal Educational Opportunity

SFCM is an equal opportunity institution of higher education and employer and is firmly committed to nondiscrimination in its delivery of educational services and employment practices. In compliance with all applicable federal and state laws, Conservatory policy prohibits unlawful discrimination based on race, color, creed, gender, religion, marital status, registered domestic partner status, age, national origin or ancestry, physical or mental disability, medical condition (including cancer and genetic characteristics), sexual orientation, or any other consideration made unlawful by federal, state, or local laws. It also prohibits unlawful discrimination based on the perception that anyone has any of those characteristics, or is associated with a person who has or is perceived as having any of those characteristics. When necessary, SFCM will reasonably accommodate individuals with disabilities if the individual is otherwise qualified to meet the fundamental requirements and aspects of the educational program and/or safely perform all essential functions, without undue hardship to SFCM and/or without altering fundamental aspects of SFCM’s educational program.

Financial Aid for International Students

International applicants are eligible to receive scholarships from the Conservatory as long as they submit the CSS Profile. International applicants are not eligible for any U.S. federal or state grants or loans.

Applying for Financial Aid