The Doctor of Musical Artist (D.M.A.) Committee bases admission to the D.M.A. program on the review of audition and entrance exam results, writing sample and all submitted supporting materials and recommendations. The D.M.A. program is small and highly selective, with only 8-10 students entering the program in most years. Successful applicants must demonstrate leadership as performers, combining breadth of repertoire with knowledge of style and literature. All D.M.A. applicants must have earned a Master of Music degree from an accredited college or university prior to matriculation.


Recommendation: Three (3) letters of recommendation are required for D.M.A. applicants. Please submit one artistic recommendation from your current or most recent private studio teacher and two additional artistic recommendations from other music teachers or ensemble directors/coaches.


Official transcripts: D.M.A. applicants should submit official transcripts from all post-secondary institutions attended.


D.M.A. Statement of Purpose and Writing Sample: D.M.A. applicants should put forth 1) a statement of purpose briefly describing their professional goals in relation to the D.M.A. program and 2) a writing sample of 300-500 words on any topic. Both essays should be entered into the appropriate pages of the online application. Please note that it is not necessary for D.M.A. applicants to submit full-length papers as part of their application to NEC unless they are applying to the Music Theory department.


Prescreening Recording: All D.M.A. applicants in Performance must submit a prescreening recording as part of the online application form by December 1st. For majors that do not have explicit prescreening requirements listed in their Audition Requirements, prescreening repertoire requirements are the same as the live audition requirements. After review of the prescreening recording, qualified applicants will be invited to present a live audition and take the D.M.A. entrance exams at NEC.


Applicants in Music Theory and Composition must submit written materials and compositions, respectively, by December 1st. Following faculty review of the application and submitted materials, qualified applicants will be invited to NEC to take the D.M.A. entrance exams.


All applicants should review both the general Audition Information and the specific audition requirements for their major. (While Music Theory and Composition applicants do not perform an audition, information about required written materials may be found in the Audition Information pages.)


Live Audition: If invited to a live audition, D.M.A. applicants must attend the audition at NEC on the date specified. D.M.A. applicants may not audition via recording regardless of their country of residence.


D.M.A. Entrance Exams: The entrance exams are a critical component of our admission process for the D.M.A. program. Applicants must pass both exams in order to be considered for admission. The two required examinations are three-hour written tests in music history (short answer and essay) and music theory. All applicants who are invited for a live audition or interview take the exams, which are scheduled for the day before or the day following the live audition, so candidates who pass the prescreening round should expect to be on campus for two days to complete all components of the admission process. Applicants in Music Theory and Composition who are invited to take the exams will be contacted by the Office of Admisssion to schedule an appropriate date in February.


For applicants who are not native speakers of English, the D.M.A. exams and submitted application materials are used to assess English proficiency. We do not require a TOEFL score for D.M.A. applicants.


Return to General Instructions for all applicants.