New England Conservatory Admissions: Everything You Want to and Need to Know

Overview of New England Conservatory

The New England Conservatory of Music is situated in Boston, Massachusetts. It offers a student/faculty ratio of just 5 to 1, allowing students to benefit from personalized instruction. NEC offers a bachelor of music, master of music and doctor of musical arts degrees. Student life is robust, and students are involved in various musical and recreational organizations and activities.


  • Total Enrollment: 838 (468 undergraduates)
  • Gender Breakdown: 56% Male/44% Female
  • 94% Full-time

Cost of Attendance Information

  • Tuition and Fees: $50,460
  • Books: $500
  • Room and Board: $16,500
  • Other Expenses: $2,500
  • Total Cost: $69,960

Financial Aid Information

  • Percentage of New Students Receiving Aid: 96%
  • Percentage of New Students Receiving Types of Aid
  • Grants: 95%
  • Loans: 36%
  • Mean Amount of Aid
  • Grants: $19,517
  • Loans: $6,173

Academic Programs Offered

  • Most Popular Majors: Jazz Studies, Piano, Strings, Woodwinds

Retention and Graduation

  • First-Year Student Retention (full-time students): 92%
  • Transfer-out Rate: 8%
  • 4-Year Graduation Rate: 78%
  • 6-Year Graduation Rate: 85%

Overview of New England Conservatory Admissions

New England Conservatory is test-optional, meaning that students can select whether to submit SAT or ACT scores. It has a robust admissions process that involves a multitude of academic measures. Applicants must complete an online application. A persuasive essay and glowing recommendation letters can bolster your application, along with being involved with student organizations and attempting a challenging course load. Students with unique talents and accomplishments can still receive strong consideration even if their GPAs are outside of the mean range. After applying, students will receive a message from an admissions counselor about the application process’s next steps. Interested students should check out the university’s website, which has helpful tips and contact information for the admissions offices.

Admissions Data                        

  • New England Conservatory Acceptance Rate: 36%
  • NEC has audition-centered admissions and is test-optional
  • Test Scores — 25th/75th Percentile
  • SAT Critical Reading: -/-
  • SAT Math: -/-
  • SAT Writing: -/-
  • ACT Cumulative: -/-
  • ACT English: -/-
  • ACT Math: -/-

Safety Net Schools: Easy to Gain Admission

If past admission data predicts that you would be a competitive candidate for New England Conservatory, it should be easy to gain admissions to the schools below. If New England Conservatory is currently out of your reach, then you are sure to be a competitive candidate for the schools below.

Oberlin College, New York University, Indiana University–Bloomington, University of Rochester

Same Tier: Just As Hard to Gain Admission

If you’re a competitive candidate for New England Conservatory, you should have an equal chance of gaining admissions at these schools.

Cleveland Institute of Music, Boston University, University of Southern California, Curtis Institute of Music

Reach Institutions: Gaining Admissions Will Be More of a Challenge

These schools are more challenging to gain admission into than New England Conservatory. If you improve your GPA and SAT/ACT scores, you’ll be a competitive candidate.

The New School, Johns Hopkins University, Yale University, Northwestern University, The Juilliard School

Applying to New England Conservatory

Application Deadline: December 1

Undergraduate Admissions Website:

Undergraduate Application Link(s):

Graduate Admissions Website:

Graduate Application Link(s): 

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