Degree Requirements

Degree Audits and Advisement

In general, students must complete the program requirements that are in effect the year in which the student enrolls. As part of The Colburn School's advising, progress toward completion of a program is reviewed periodically using the appropriate advising worksheets linked here. Specific questions about academic progress should be directed to the student's assigned advisor. Advising assignments are posted on the academic bulletin board, and students are notified electronically of meetings.

Bachelor of Music requirements

Performance Diploma requirements

Artist Diploma requirements

Professional Studies Certificate requirements

Master of Music requirements (to be posted)

Jury Requirement

All Conservatory students are required to perform a jury at the end of each semester, and to complete a Jury Information Form documenting the semester’s studies. The requirement for a jury may be waived with the approval of the applied teacher. The waiver is based on the student having successfully prepared for and completed a musical endeavor that is of comparable weight to a jury. The student should request the waiver on the Jury Information Form, providing basic data on the event that is substituting for the jury (i.e., date, location, repertoire, etc.). See the Jury Information Form for further details.

Performance Diploma for ESL Reasons

(revised October 2013)

In order to allow students with weak English language skills to progress musically while preparing for the academic demands of the BM program, the School places such students in the Performance Diploma (PD) program. Once in the PD program, the student has two options.

 

Option 1: The student may choose to remain in the PD program for the entire four years. Note that most schools will require a BM degree for study in a graduate Master of Music degree program. A PD generally is not considered acceptable preparation for an MM degree.

 

Option 2: If the student wishes to move from the PD to the BM program, the School offers an assessment exam at the end of the first year of enrollment in the PD program. This exam includes a reading and writing test, an oral exam, and a spoken conversation. In addition to the exam, any PD student wishing to move to the BM program is required to audit MHL 104 in the Spring semester of the first year in the PD program to assist in determining readiness for the academic demands of the BM.

 

If the faculty panel determines that the student is prepared for study in the BM program, the student will be permitted to begin study in the BM program the following semester. In this case, the student will then be enrolled at The Colburn School for a total of five years (one year in the PD and four years in the BM). If it is determined that the student’s English language skills are not adequate for the BM program, the student must remain in the PD program.

 

A PD student who wishes to take some BM courses for credit while in the PD program must discuss the option with his/her advisor, and then petition the Academic Affairs Committee. The BM courses would then appear on the student’s transcript, which will aid the student should he/she apply to a BM program at another school.

Practical Training

The curricula for the Bachelor of Music degree, Performance Diploma, Artist Diploma, Professional Studies Certificate and Master of Music degree include a requirement for practical training as part of Applied Studies (refer to Course Descriptions). All students are required to participate in musical rehearsals, performances, and/or reading sessions. Such activities may take place within or without the School, may be paid or unpaid, and may take place during the academic year or during breaks.

For international students, such practical training shall be documented and noted in their SEVIS records, according to DHS regulations.

Program Length Policies

Bachelor of Music program length: The Bachelor of Music degree is designed as an eight-semester program, normally completed within four years of consecutive enrollment starting from the time of initial admission. Students who begin in the Performance Diploma program and then move to the BM program may have an additional two semesters to complete their BM studies, for a total of one year in the PD program and four years in the BM program.

Approved long-term leaves of absence or other special circumstances may extend program length up to a total of 6 years or 12 semesters from the date of matriculation.

If a student has not completed his/her BM degree within the allotted number of semesters, the Dean and the faculty may approve awarding a Performance Diploma to the student instead of a BM, assuming all PD requirements have been met.

A student who has not met BM graduation requirements within the required number of semesters due to lack of academic progress, and not due to illness or approved leaves of absence, may choose to submit a written petition to the Dean for an extension rather than choosing to earn a PD. The Dean shall consult with the faculty and the Associate Dean before determining whether to approve or deny the extension. Normally such an extension shall be granted for a maximum of two additional semesters.

Students who transfer to The Colburn School from another college or university to earn a Bachelor of Music degree are required to complete a minimum of four consecutive full-time semesters at Colburn.

Other special circumstances that require extended enrollment and that are not covered by this policy shall be considered on a case-by-case basis. The Dean’s decision in such cases shall be final.

Performance Diploma program length: The Performance Diploma is designed as an eight-semester program, normally completed within four years of consecutive enrollment. Special circumstances, including approved long-term leaves of absence, may extend this program up to a total of five years or ten semesters from the date of matriculation. If a student has not completed his/her diploma within the allotted number of semesters, the student may be required to reapply and reaudition for admission. Exceptions to this policy shall be considered by petition to the Associate Dean, with the final approval of the Dean of the Conservatory.

Artist Diploma program length: The Artist Diploma is a minimum of two years (four semesters) and a maximum of four years (eight semesters) in length. At the end of the second semester of enrollment, the student and the applied teacher must agree on program length based on the student’s progress and goals. The student must submit an Artist Diploma Program Length form to the Associate Dean at the end of the second semester. In the absence of such form, it will be assumed that the student shall complete the program within two years. If a student has not completed his/her diploma within the agreed-upon number of semesters, the student may be required to reapply and reaudition for admission. Exceptions to this policy shall be considered by petition to the Associate Dean, with the final approval of the Dean of the Conservatory.

Artist Diploma students who have completed a Bachelor of Music degree at The Colburn School must complete the AD program in two years (four semesters). However, at the end of the second year a student may request an extension of one year by completing an Extend Program form, obtaining the signature of the applied teacher noting approval, and submitting the form to the Dean for final approval.

Professional Studies Certificate program length: The Professional Studies Certificate is a minimum of two years (four semesters) and a maximum of three years (six semesters) in length. If a student has not completed his/her certificate program within the allotted number of semesters, the student may be required to reapply and reaudition for admission. Exceptions to this policy shall be considered by petition to the Associate Dean, with the final approval of the Dean of the Conservatory.

Master of Music program length: The Master of Music degree program is designed as a four-semester program, normally completed within two years of consecutive enrollment starting from the time of initial admission. Approved long-term leaves of absence or other special circumstances may extend program length up to a total of 3 years or 6 semesters from the date of matriculation.

As noted above under “Leave of Absence (Long-Term),” in cases where a student’s program is extended due to a professional position, the student may be required to reapply and reaudition for admission if he/she is absent for more than one academic year. Other special circumstances that require extended enrollment and that are not covered by this policy shall be considered on a case-by-case basis. The Dean’s decision in such cases shall be final.

 

Colburn Conservatory of Music student with violin scroll
Conservatory
of Music
Colburn Conservatory of Music student with double bass

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