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School Info, Enrollment & Policies

General School Information

Graduate Admissions Policies

Admissions Requirements

The Board of Admissions takes into consideration your academic record, professional experience, as well as aptitude for music-related studies. Applicants must have proficiency in the English language, including reading, writing, and speaking, and must have completed high school/secondary school by the time they enroll at Berklee Online. Our comprehensive evaluation of each applicant is designed to assess an applicant’s ability to succeed at Berklee Online.

Refer to the graduate degree admissions requirements page to learn more.

For all graduate-level programs, applicants are required to hold a baccalaureate degree and are expected to have a high record of academic and/or professional achievement. The following materials are required for the application process:

  1. Online application with a $75 non-refundable fee to be paid by credit card at the time of the application submission. Note that all correspondence related to the application will be addressed to the email address provided in the application.
  2. Proof of bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution in relevant field, or bachelor’s degree with significant work experience in music production, engineering, and/or technology. Students should supply official transcripts, along with a copy of their diploma.
  3. Statement of purpose in which applicants should:
    1. Tell us about their background
    2. Tell us why they are applying to the program
    3. Describe the project they intend to pursue in the program and how it will foster their academic, musical, and professional growth
  4. Résumé/CV
  5. Two academic/professional letters of recommendation
  6. English exam (TOEFL or IELTS) for students for whom English is a second language
  7. Additional requirement for the Master of Music in Music Production: Portfolio with at least three recorded examples of recent work, along with detailed explanation of their specific role in the work

International Applicants/Students Who Have Studied outside the United States or Canada
Starting for Fall 2020 applications, international applicants and those applicants who have studied outside the United States or Canada have the following options:


  • Submit official academic records for evaluation by an accredited credential evaluation agency, such as the Education Credential Evaluators (www.ece.org). Ask for a course-by-course evaluation with grades. Students who select this option will receive an admissions decision within two weeks of completing their application requirements.
  • Submit official academic records for evaluation directly to Berklee Online. For more information on which documents we require, please see our Required Academic Documentation for International Applicants by Country Guide here.

    Students who select this option will receive an admissions decision within approximately four weeks of completing their application requirements. Please note that in some cases, additional time may be required.

All international credentials will be assessed in relation to US standards. As such, it is possible that a student may have completed what is considered to be a bachelor’s degree within a particular country but this credential is not considered comparable to a US bachelor’s degree. In general, a Bachelor’s degree is considered to be 4-years and the equivalent to 120 semester credits (180 quarter credits or 240 ECTS credits). Consideration will be given to bachelor’s degree awarded after 3-years, provided the credential grants access to graduate level programs in the native country’s system.


Contacting Berklee Online Admissions

Toll-free within the United States and Canada:
1-866-BERKLEE (1-866-237-5533)
Outside the U.S. and Canada: (617) 747-2146 Option 1
Email: advisors@online.berklee.edu


Transfer Credit

A maximum of 6 graduate-level credits will be accepted as transfer credit from a regionally accredited institution.* An allowable transfer course must show a grade point average of “B,” 83 percent, or 3.0 or better. Transfer students are required to provide an official transcript from the accredited institution. In order for credits to be eligible for transfer, they must align with the degree requirements and be worth 3 semester credits or 4.5 quarter credits.

*Special consideration is given to students who have completed college-level course work at music institutions with national accreditation. Accreditation must be given by an accrediting agency or state approval agency recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education as a reliable authority as to the quality of postsecondary education within the meaning of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended (HEA).

Official Transcript
A transcript is considered official only if it is sent directly from an issuing authority, such as a college or university, to Berklee Online in a sealed envelope. Transcripts that have been opened or faxed are not considered official and, therefore, are not acceptable for transfer credit.

Starting for Fall 2020 applications, international applicants and those applicants who have studied outside the United States or Canada have the option between submitting their official academic records for evaluation by an accredited evaluation company or having these evaluated by the Credential Verification Team at Berklee Online. For additional information on this process, please see the International Credential Evaluation policy section.

For those students who elect to have their academic records evaluated by an accredited evaluation company, Berklee Online recommends the following provider of evaluation service:

Education Credential Evaluators, Inc.
P.O. Box 514070
Milwaukee, WI 53203-3470
USA
(414) 289-3400
eval@ece.org

Credit Systems
Berklee Online operates under a semester-hour system. When transferring credit from a university using a different system, the following conversions are made:

Quarter-Hour Systems

  • 4.5 quarter-hour credits outside of Berklee Online equal 3 semester-hour credits at Berklee Online.
  • Quarter-hour credits less than 4.5 will not be accepted for transfer credit.

Semester-Hour Systems

  • 3 semester-hour credits outside of Berklee Online equal 3 semester-hour credits at Berklee Online.
  • 45 lecture hours equal 3 semester-hour credits.


International Credential Evaluation

Starting for Fall 2020 applications, international applicants and those applicants who have studied outside the United States or Canada have the option between submitting their official academic records for evaluation by an accredited evaluation company or having these evaluated by the Credential Verification Team at Berklee Online.

International students who have submitted an application and are seeking to have their academic records evaluated by Berklee Online will be required to provide the appropriate documentation as detailed in the Required Academic Documentation for International Applicants by Country.

While the precise requirements vary by country, most students will be required to submit an official copy of their academic record. This is a document provided by an issuing authority such as a college or university and lists the subjects completed and the grades/marks earned for each year of study. In many cases, additional documentation such as a copy of the student’s diploma, certificate, or a verification report may also be required.

Official academic records must be sent directly to Berklee Online by the issuing authority (college, university, etc.) in a sealed envelope that has been stamped or signed across the back flap. If the issuing authority provides the official academic record to the student, the student can send it to Berklee Online provided that they have not opened the sealed envelope. If the envelope is opened or there is no stamp or signature from the appropriate authority, it cannot be accepted as official. Do not send original documents to Berklee Online, as these will not be returned. If the student is only allowed one copy of their academic record, they will need to bring this document to their institution, who can attest that they have seen the original record(s) and provide a certified or an attested true copy to Berklee Online.

If the official academic record and/or credential is not issued in English, the student will need to provide a certified, literal English translation. The translation cannot be done by the student and must instead be completed by the institution, an embassy, or a professional translation service. Translations must be literal, word-for-word, complete, and in a similar format as the original.

Evaluation of international academic requirements cannot begin for a student until their application has been submitted and the Berklee Online Admissions Office has received all required academic records. Evaluations will take approximately two weeks to complete; however, in some instances, additional documentation may be required and/or more time may be needed. In the rare circumstance that the Credential Evaluation Team at Berklee Online cannot come to a consensus on the materials provided, the student may be asked to submit their documentation to an accredited credential evaluation company, such as ECE.

All international academic records will be assessed in relation to US standards. As such, certain grades/marks, credentials, or academic levels may be determined to be different than what is reflected on the student’s record. While the student will be notified when their evaluation has been completed, they will not be provided a copy of their evaluation. If the student fails to provide documentation that meets the admissions criteria, their application will be considered incomplete and no admissions decision can be made until the appropriate academic records are received.


Residency Requirements
All students, including those transferring from other colleges and universities, are required to complete a minimum of 30 credits for the degree through Berklee Online post matriculation, in order to obtain their degree.

Courses Eligible for Transfer
To have a course transferred, the description and syllabus needs to be comparable to a specific course in the graduate program. Students are encouraged to provide an official course description and syllabus from their previous institution’s course manual or directly from the previous institution’s official website to assist the Transfer Credit Department in determining comparability.

Transfer Credit Process

    Students who are seeking to transfer credit into Berklee Online will need to complete the following steps:

  1. Review credit requirements needed to fulfill Berklee Online’s master’s degree programs.
  2. Submit official transcripts directly from all previous colleges attended. A transcript is considered official only if it is sent directly from a college/university to Berklee Online. Transcripts that have been opened or faxed are not considered official and, therefore, are not acceptable for transfer credit. Grade reports are also not acceptable for transfer credit.
    1. Prospective students should submit official transcripts with your application to the degree program. Transcripts should be submitted prior to the application deadline. Students who receive transfer credits will receive official transfer evaluations by email after acceptance into the degree program.
    2. Current students should submit official transcripts to the Transfer Credit Department. In addition, students are encouraged to submit the syllabi and course descriptions for any course they wish to have transferred into their degree program.

    Prospective students can send documentation to:

    Berklee Online Admissions
    855 Boylston St, 3rd Floor
    Boston, MA 02116

    Current students can send documentation to:

    Berklee Online Transfer Credit Department
    855 Boylston Street, 3rd Floor
    Boston, MA 02116

Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU)/Berklee MBA students
Students pursuing the SNHU/Berklee MBA program who wish to transfer to Berklee Online’s Master of Art or Master of Music program will first need to apply and be accepted into the program. The courses taken with Berklee Online may apply towards the Master of Arts in Music Business.


Acceptance Into Berklee Online

Orientation Course
All Berklee Online master’s degree students are required to complete an online orientation course. The purpose of the online orientation is to ensure that students are well prepared for their program and graduate-level study. The orientation course should be completed by 5:00 P.M. on Sunday prior to the start of the first semester.

Acceptance Expiration
Admission acceptances are only valid for four consecutive semesters.

Acceptance to Berklee College of Music versus Berklee Online
Students accepted to a graduate program at Berklee College of Music who wish to pursue a graduate program through Berklee Online will need to apply for admission to Berklee Online. Documentation provided to Berklee College of Music during the original application process may be used during the application process for Berklee Online. Students who are dismissed from Berklee College of Music may not apply for admission to Berklee Online.

Students accepted to Berklee Online who wish to pursue a master’s degree through Berklee College of Music will need to apply for admission to Berklee College of Music.

Acceptance to one master’s degree program does not confer acceptance to another master’s degree program

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