A photo of a San Francisco Conservatory of Music student studying
  1. Admissions

Transfer Students

The grass is greener in San Francisco.

Transfer Students and Credits

Students transfer to SFCM for a number of reasons. Some outgrow the offerings of their first institutions, some want to study with specific faculty members, and some want to be in the cultural hub that is San Francisco and take advantage of the world-class music organizations just down the street from the Conservatory. No matter your reasons, we’re happy to consider you as a prospective student and work with you to bring you into our family.

Life in San Francisco


Undergraduate students who want to transfer to the Conservatory 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 previous and current institutions.

How to Apply

Course Transfer Credits

The class level of an undergraduate transfer student is determined by the Office of Academic Affairs at the time of acceptance into SFCM.

Undergraduate transfer students can receive credit for courses in the Humanities and Sciences (HMS) and/or Professional Development (PDV) areas, provided the student received a grade of C or better and the course is ruled an appropriate substitute for a Conservatory course. SFCM does not grant transfer credit for Musicianship, Music Theory, Music History, Basic Phonetics, Lyric Diction, or major instrument studies (i.e., private lessons) completed elsewhere. Students may receive credit by examination for these required courses, based upon the results of placement examinations administered at the time of registration. Credit by examination does not apply credits towards degree; these waived credits must still be completed with other courses.

Credit from completed Bachelor's degrees cannot be applied towards your SFCM undergraduate credit load. Credit from completed Associate's (A.A.) degrees can be applied, following the guidelines described above.

Required credits per class level can be found in the Lower and Upper Division Standing section of the Academic Regulations.

AP and IB Credits

SFCM also grants credit for certain AP and IB (International Baccalaureate) exams. AP scores must be 4 or 5 for College Writing and 3 or better for other HMS requirements (specific degree requirements can be found in SFCM's Curricular Requirements). AP English, including AP English Language Composition and AP English Literature Composition, can substitute for HMS 110-111 College Writing. Passing one of these with a 4 or 5 will substitute for HMS 110; passing both will substitute for HMS 110 and 111. IB scores of 5 or higher will also be accepted, according to the policies described above.

Financial Aid Consideration

All transfer applicants are equally considered for merit- and need-based scholarship as first-year applicants. Accepted applicants should be in touch with the Office of Financial Aid with any questions regarding their financial aid.


Get in Touch.

Office of Admission

SFCM students performing