The Harvard/NEC program is a joint five-year program leading to a Bachelor of Arts (AB) at Harvard College and a Master of Music (MM) at New England Conservatory.


Eligible high school students must apply to both Harvard and New England Conservatory following the institutions' normal undergraduate application processes and indicating on NEC's application that they are applying for the joint program. In addition, Harvard undergraduates may apply to the program during the freshman year at Harvard.


Admission to this program is very competitive. Applicants must demonstrate the highest level of performance ability, so it is possible that an applicant can be admitted to both institutions but denied admission to the joint program. Normally, there are 5-6 students admitted each year.


Please note: There is no option on the Harvard undergraduate application to indicate that applicants are interested in applying to the Harvard/NEC dual degree program. Interested students must select the appropriate program on NEC's application in order to be considered for the dual degree program. Applicants must select either "Five year AB/MM program with Harvard" or "Both Harvard and Tufts 5 year programs with NEC" on the "Degree" page of NEC's application to be considered for the Harvard dual degree program.  NEC's application can be found online here.


Harvard accepts the Common Application and the Universal Application for freshman applicants; joint-degree applicants must submit the relevant arts supplement, including performance or composition materials, directly to the Harvard Admissions Office.


A live audition during the regular audition period (February/March) is required for all performance applicants to the joint program. Applicants should prepare the undergraduate audition repertoire as described in the Audition Requirements for their major.  As described in the Audition Requirements, composition applicants will be required to submit scores and recordings by the December 1 deadline but do not have to perform an audition.


No offer of admission will be considered until the Office of Admission receives all required documents. Regardless of Early Action or Regular Decision status at Harvard College, applicants will not receive a decision about joint program admission until early April.


Harvard undergraduates in their first year of study may apply to transfer into the dual degree program by completing NEC's application and audition process.  Due to curriculum constraints, students beyond their first year at Harvard may not apply to transfer, and current NEC undergraduates are not eligible to transfer into the dual degree at Harvard.


For more information, go to the NEC/Harvard Double Degree program page. Further information is available from the Department of Music at Harvard University or the Office of Admission at New England Conservatory.


Return to General Instructions for all applicants.