Entry requirements for conservatoire courses could be qualifications, auditions, other skills and interests, and more. Find out about them here.

What the entry requirements could be

Each course has different requirements – usually a mix of qualifications, subjects or exam grades they recommend you have or be working towards when you apply.

You’ll be able to see exactly what they are when you search for courses, but here’s the general idea.
  1. Qualifications, subjects and exam grades – usually A levels or other qualifications at a similar level. Sometimes these are converted into UCAS Tariff points too, which we’ll explain below.
  2. An assessment – a performance or interview at the conservatoire to assess your skills and suitability for the course – the conservatoire will let you know the details after you apply.
  3. Your overall suitability – course descriptions often mention skills, interest or experience it’s good to have, so look out for these details because applications can be quite competitive.
  4. Further requirements – it’s possible there may be health, financial or Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) or Protecting Vulnerable Groups (PVG) checks.

Working towards entry requirements

If you’re working towards the required qualifications when you apply, you’ll probably be given conditions to meet. Depending on conservatoire benchmarks and applicant numbers, these can occasionally change from the initial recommendations – so it’s a good plan to apply to courses with higher and lower requirements so you’ll have different options.

International and EU students

The qualifications required are often stated in UK terms, such as A levels. Don’t worry though – you can also use equivalent international qualifications that you’ve completed already or you’re working towards now.

  • This is different to how some countries manage applications for higher education. In the UK your school or college can provide predicted grades for qualifications you’re studying now that lead to higher education. That way you can apply earlier in the year to increase your chances of getting a place.
  • When you search for courses, don’t worry if the entry requirements don’t specify your qualifications – many course providers accept alternative equivalent qualifications. Check on the course provider’s website or contact them to find out.
  • You can get a statement about how your qualifications compare to UK equivalents from UK ENIC, operated and managed by Ecctis Limited.

Understanding qualification, subject and grade requirements

Most conservatoires set entry requirements based on one or a combination of these – perhaps a specific qualification, subject or high grade, or a high grade in a certain subject (or subjects) relevant to the course you’re applying for.

  • Some conservatoires use UCAS Tariff points in their entry requirements too. This is a points total achieved by converting qualifications such as A levels (and many others) into points, making it simpler for course providers to compare applicants.
  • Don’t worry if you can’t meet the exact requirements, or if your qualification isn’t listed on the course description or in the Tariff. If you have something similar you’ll probably still be considered, so feel free to contact conservatoires to check.