You make your application in our online system Apply. Here’s a step-by-step guide to applying to a conservatoire.

When you’ve found a course you want to apply to, there are a few key points to note before you start your application:

  • You can only apply once in a cycle –  don't apply more than once as you won’t receive a refund for further applications.
  • Check the application deadlines before you apply – check our search tool to find the date for your courses.   
  • If you've applied in previous cycles and want to apply again, you'll have to submit a new application.
  • There’s quite a bit to fill in, but you don’t need do it all at once – you can save your application and sign back in at anytime.
  • There’s help text in our Apply system to give you a steer on what to include.

1. Register to use Apply

Add some personal details, get a username, create a password and set your security question.

Have you applied before?

  • You can only apply once in a cycle. Please don't apply more than once in a cycle, as you can't receive a refund for further applications. 
  • If you've applied in previous cycles and want to apply again, you'll still have to submit a new application. 

Register now 

2. Sign in to the welcome screen

Here you’ll find your Personal ID – quote this if you need to contact us or your conservatoires. In ‘my application’ you add the other information that’s needed.

3.  Fill in the rest of your personal details

We’ll use these details to let you know about interviews and offers from your choices. You can also give a parent, guardian or adviser nominated access if you'd like them to speak on your behalf.

4. Fill in some further details

  • Nationality, residential category, student support arrangements (how you expect to pay for your tuition fees), any relevant criminal convictions and any special needs or impairments.

5. State your previous education

Enter details of up to five schools, colleges and universities you have most recently attended or are still attending.

Please include any conservatoire junior departments or academies you’ve attended too.

6. State your previous qualifications

You must enter all your qualifications – whether you have the result (even any that were ungraded) or you’re still awaiting exams and results.

For course results you're still waiting for, these are the exam results we're able to process and forward on to conservatoires. If any of your pending qualifications aren't on here, you still need to add them to your application, but also remember you’ll need to send the results on to your chosen conservatoires when you get them.

Read our blog if you need advice on entering AS and A levels.

7. Make your course choices

You can choose up to six courses – in no preference order.

  • Conservatoires will be able to see where else you’ve applied, but your choices are listed in no preference order.
  • There are ‘study type’ options for music courses, but for other subjects this will just state ‘Main specialism’.
  • Then you can choose from one of the audition locations.

There’s usually no need to apply for more than one course at any particular conservatoire.

Are you studying music?

If you’re applying for music courses, you might be able to select two instruments if you’d like to.

  • Main specialism is just one instrument.
  • Joint main specialism is two instruments studied equally.
  • Secondary specialism is two instruments – one as your main and one as your secondary.
  • Alternative main specialism is giving two options, either of which you’d be happy to study as one main instrument.

Thinking about several courses for the same instrument or discipline?

  • If you want to apply for several courses for the same instrument or discipline at the same conservatoire, just mention one of them on your UCAS Conservatoires application.
  • Then contact the conservatoire directly to mention your interest in other courses (stating your name and the Personal ID we’ll email you after you’ve submitted your application to us).

Not sure which courses you’re qualified for?

  1. Firstly you’ll know whether you’re at undergraduate or postgraduate level – depending whether you’ve previously completed further education or graduated from an undergraduate degree.
  2. Then you can choose a type of course at that level. They have different entry requirements, so it’s a good idea to contact the conservatoire to check which course they think you should apply for.
  3. If there’s uncertainty over which will be the most suitable, just apply for the highest level course you’re interested in, then the conservatoire will be able to make a final decision at the audition or interview stage.
  • For example, if you’ll be studying at undergraduate level and you’re not sure if you’ll be qualified for a diploma or a BMus degree, only apply for the BMus degree.
  • If you’ll be studying at postgraduate level and not sure whether to apply for a postgraduate diploma or a master’s degree, only apply for the master’s degree.

8. Write a personal statement

This is your chance to show conservatoires why you want to study the course and why you'd make a great student. It might take a while until you’re happy with it and you’ve checked it through with teachers, advisers or family, so it’s a good idea to start early.

9. Get two references

A reference is a written recommendation from a teacher, adviser, or professional who knows you academically.

  • You’ll need an academic reference and a practical reference. These must be completed by two different referees. Enter the details of your referees on the application, and send a request to them to complete the reference for you. This will then be attached to your application when you submit it.
  • If you are unable to get your references in time, you can proceed without a reference by selecting the relevant tick box in the reference section of your application.You will need to print or download the reference forms and email them to your referees – and they need to send the references to the conservatoires you’re applying to.

  • This must be completed by the end of October for music courses, or as soon as possible for courses with other deadlines – check conservatoire websites for specific dates.

10. Read the declaration

Once you’ve marked all previous sections as complete you’ll be able to read and agree to the declaration – which allows us to process your info and send it to your conservatoires.

11. Verify your email address

We need you to do this so we can make sure we have your correct email address. Click ‘generate a verification code’ and then enter it on this screen. If your email address is wrong you can go back to amend your personal details.

Can’t see the verification email?

We send it from – add this to your list of contacts, and check your junk/spam folder just in case.

If you still haven’t received it, click the link on the ‘verify email’ screen to get another email sent to you. Although if this means you end up with two emails, just use the code from the most recent one.

12. Pay application and assessment fees

There’s an application fee of £25 for the 2020 cycle, and £26 for the 2021 cycle. 

For most courses you’ll need to attend an audition or interview, or send a recording or portfolio to each conservatoire.

  • There’s usually a fee for these auditions and assessments – we collect most of these fees at this stage, but in some cases you’ll need to pay the conservatoire directly.
  • When you’re ready to send your application, the Apply system will tell you how much each fee is, and whether you need to pay now or send the fee direct to the conservatoire.

Some card transactions fail due to a number of reasons – although not exhaustive, below are the most common reasons.

  • Card not registered for 3D secure – 3D secure stands for 3 Domain secure. The three parties involved in the process are the vendor, the acquiring bank and Visa or MasterCard. The protocol was developed by Visa to improve security of online payments. It offers the ability to authenticate cardholders through the use of a password during online purchases, reducing the likelihood of fraud. It is offered under the service names Verified by Visa and MasterCard SecureCode. Please visit the issuing bank’s or card issuer’s website or speak to your card issuer or bank for further details. For an incorrect 3D secure password – also visit the issuing bank’s website or speak to your bank or card issuer.
  • Incorrect card details entered – please ensure you check the long number on the original card, the expiry date of the card and security number (last three digits on the back of your card) are entered correctly before clicking the ‘make payment’ button.
  • Lack of funds in your bank account or exceeding your credit card limit – visit the issuing bank’s website or speak to your bank or card issuer.

Sign in to complete your application