ADMISSIONS fAQS

 

1. APPLICATION +

1.1 Who is eligible to apply for the Bachelor of Music (Hons) Degree programme?

Prospective candidates must have completed (or be completing) senior high school studies (of any discipline and subject combination) to attain the following academic qualifications as required by NUS. Music diploma students from the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts and LaSalle College of the Arts are also welcome to apply.

Students currently in the final year of high school are suitable to apply if they are expecting to finish their course and obtain the necessary qualifications by 1 July 2019. Students who are home-schooled must also attain one of the accepted high school qualifications to be eligible to apply.

Besides fulfilling the NUS academic requirements, you are also required to offer an audition that meets our requirements.

External gradings such as the ABRSM or Trinity certificates have no bearing on admission and will not be accepted as equivalent academic qualifications.

1.2 When can I apply for admission?

Each year, applications are usually open from September to December with auditions happening in January or February the following year. You may check here for the most updated admissions timeline nearer the application period.

1.3 What application materials are required for submission?

It is the responsibility of applicants to ensure that all necessary documents are uploaded and submitted online via the admissions application portal by the deadline.

Application materials required include:

a) A copy of your passport personal particulars page or NRIC (front and back) if you are Singaporean or a Singapore Permanent Resident

b) A most recent passport-sized colour photograph (click here for photo requirements)

c) Academic transcripts for all semesters in your current high school

d) High school graduation certificate

  • If you have not completed high school, please submit a Student Status Letter reflecting your date of enrolment, current year of study and expected completion date.

e) Two recommendations

  • You will be required to request recommendations from two referees. The referees should be people who are in the best position to comment on your music ability and aptitude. At least one of the referees should be a teacher who has been preparing you in your major study area. Recommendation by a family member or friend will not be accepted.
  • Please see 1.4 below for how to submit the recommendations.

f) Pre-screening videos (For Piano majors and Music, Collaboration & Production/Music & Society majors specialising in piano only)

  • Recordings should be uploaded to a shareable online drive such as Google Drive, DropBox, OneDrive or other similar platforms. Each piece and each sonata movement must be uploaded as a separate file and labelled clearly to indicate the name of the composer, title and movement e.g. J.S Bach, Prelude and Fugue No.1 in C Major, BWV846. Save all the uploaded files into one folder and share the link to that folder.
  • Recordings must be performed from memory and in one sitting (i.e. same conditions: grand piano and room). Recordings must not be edited, thus please ensure that both video and audio qualities are good.

g) Scores and recordings (For Composition majors and Music, Collaboration & Production/Music & Society majors specialising in composition only)

  • Scores and recordings should be uploaded to a shareable online drive such as Google Drive, DropBox, OneDrive or other similar platforms. Scores must be in PDF format and recordings should be in MP3 format. Recordings may be MIDI renderings of the score, but performances by live musicians is preferred. Save all the uploaded files into one folder and share the link to that folder.

h) Portfolio (for Music, Collaboration & Production/Music & Society majors only)

  • You should submit a portfolio documenting your musical scholarship, musical leadership, and/or other significant achievements in the musical arts. The portfolio should consist of a CV and supporting documentation for achievements and projects. Recordings (audio/visual) should be uploaded to a shareable online drive such as Google Drive, DropBox, OneDrive or other similar platforms.

i) Awards/Certificates (Optional)

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Note:

Items a) to e) are compulsory, while items f), g) and h) are applicable to piano and composition applicants or Music, Collaboration & Productions/Music & Society respectively only.

Non-English documents must be accompanied by an official English translation.

If you have completed high school and are currently enrolled in a college/university, you are also required to submit a student status letter and transcripts from the current institution, in addition to your high school graduation certificates and results.

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1.4 How do I submit the application materials?

(Please see 1.3 above for the list of required documents.)

For items a) to d) and h) to i), upload the documents as part of the online application through the Application Portal by the submission deadline.

For item e), your referees must submit their recommendations directly online using your application number and recommendation code , which will be provided after you have completed your application online by the deadline.

For items f) and g), copy and save the link to the folder of your online media drive containing all your files in a word/text document and PDF it to be uploaded onto the Application Portal.

1.5 Is there an application fee?

There is no application fee or other fee involved during the application phase. International students are requested to consult the YST Admissions Office if they come across agents charging them an application fee.

1.6 I have not completed my high school examinations. Am I eligible to apply before the audition or will I have to wait till I receive my high school results and certificate?

If you are currently in the final year of high school studies, you may first submit an application online. An offer of admission will be subject to your successful completion of high school studies by 1 July before matriculating in the University.

1.7 I am a Singaporean male and will be enlisted for National Service after completion of high school. When should I apply to YST?

Singaporean and Singaporean PR males are not exempted from National Service after completion of high school. However, you may want to plan forward and apply either in your first or second year in the army as we can hold your place at YST up to a maximum of one year.

2. AUDITION +

2.1 When will the auditions be held?

In general, YST conducts auditions in Singapore and overseas regionally from December to February. You may check here for the most updated admissions timeline nearer the application period.

2.2 Where can I audition?

You may check here for our most updated audition venues and schedules nearer the application period.

2.3 How do I schedule an audition?

After submitting your application and all required materials successfully online, shortlisted applicants will receive an invitation to audition via email at least 2 weeks before the audition day or by 31 December 2018, whichever is earlier.

2.4 Can I choose to do a video audition?

We expect serious candidates to attend the ‘live’ audition where possible and encourage candidates to select Singapore as the preferred audition venue.

Requests for a video audition may be declined if an audition venue is accessible to the applicant. Candidates granted a video audition may still be required to travel to Singapore for a final audition and interview if the Conservatory requires live interaction with the candidates before finalising an offer of admission.

Video auditions will not be granted for candidates auditioning for piano, composition or audio arts and sciences.

Candidates submitting a video audition must also include a self-introduction in English, discussing their musical background, what they know about YST, and their future plans and ambitions.

2.5 Can I request for an alternative live audition date if I am unable to attend due to conflict in schedule (e.g. school exams, overseas exchanges, music festivals, performances, etc)?

With the exception of piano audition, an alternative date or arrangement may be made for candidates who are unable to attend the live audition with valid reasons. You should email the YST Admissions Office immediately at musadmissions@nus.edu.sg after submitting your application to make this request.

2.6 Can I choose pieces other than those listed in the requirements for my audition?

We list the audition repertoire in order to communicate to the applicants the musical requirements we need to hear to determine the level of excellence of each applicant.

If the audition material listed under your specific instrument gives you some flexibility in choosing literature, you should prepare music of contrasting styles that best exhibits your abilities in the areas of technique, sound, musicianship and style. You may wish to consult your major teacher for advice.

2.7 I am interested to apply for the composition major. What kind of works should I prepare for my portfolio?

The composition faculty are looking for examples of notated music that use piano, voice and/or orchestral instruments. Familiar formats would be a symphonic band, orchestra, string quartet, voice with piano accompaniment, wind quintet, brass quintet, or a combination of orchestral instruments e.g. flute, cello, and piano.

Music arrangements or popular genres will not be considered; popular genres refers to popular musical styles e.g. rock, pop, blues, jazz. These styles can be referenced in a composition - for instance, a string quartet might have a section that is influenced by jazz - but the composition itself isn't a "pop song". A good litmus test would be to ask the following question: would this piece be appropriate for the radio or for a concert hall? Usually music on the radio (except on the classical station) is popular music. Music performed in concert halls usually does not fit under the umbrella of popular genres.

At the interview, applicants should be able to discuss their influences and musical interests in relation to the field of composition.

2.8 Do I need to provide a piano accompanist for my audition?

Though not compulsory (with the exception of voice majors), candidates are strongly recommended to perform with an accompanist on their own arrangement as it would demonstrate further understanding of the score from the performer’s perspective.

For shortlisted candidates attending the ‘live’ audition in Singapore, YST has a list of piano accompanists whom you may contact directly for their availability and fees if you are keen.

2.9 I have been shortlisted for the ‘live’ audition in Singapore. Can I rent a practice room in YST to practise prior to my audition day?

Unfortunately, renting of practice rooms at YST to practise prior to the audition day is not possible. We have limited practice facilities within the YST Building and priority is given to current YST students during the semester. All candidates will have 30 minutes to warm up in a practice room equipped with a grand piano just before the audition.

3. ADMISSION CRITERIA +

3.1 How does YST select students?

Application for admission to YST is by open competition. Prospective students are assessed by a combination of the following:

Audition & Interview Preparing for a strong audition is a key requirement for admission to the major studies in performance. Candidates must be confident in performing the audition repertoire at a very high level.

Candidates applying for the major in Composition will be assessed by the quality of their works submitted in their portfolio.

Candidates applying for the major in Audio Arts & Sciences should display a good knowledge and sensitivity in music and aptitude for technical works.

Academic status & standing Besides performing or composing at a very high level, it is important that candidates have sufficient academic maturity to manage the degree level modules. In addition to meeting our minimum academic qualifications for admission, candidates should preferably possess good academic records.

YST offers the Young Artist Programme for teenagers who demonstrate outstanding performance during the auditions for admission to the BMus programme but were not offered admission based on the academic requirements of NUS. These students are expected to be enrolled in Singapore schools and are normally aged between 15 and 17.

English proficiency The medium of instruction at NUS is English. While there is no TOEFL or IELTS requirements, prospective candidates should have sufficient English proficiency to manage the coursework.

YST currently tests the English proficiency of applicants through a simple interview, as well as a written sample from the registration form which they are required to complete, as part of their auditions. Candidates who are unable and unwilling to converse in English will not be considered.

Recommendations Comments from teachers and mentors who understand your musical ability contribute to our understanding of you as a musician and are valuable in helping us decide on our offer.

3.2 Does having previous music qualifications such as certificates, diplomas etc. provide any advantage for applicants?

Music qualifications (music diplomas or degrees) obtained through full-time studies at a music conservatory, arts school, middle schools attached to a conservatory or colleges with a developed arts programme e.g. NAFA, LaSalle College of Music are not pre-requisites but may be an advantage for admission.

Music certificates and diplomas obtained through external examinations (example: ABRSM certificates) are not considered for admission and will not be used as a tool to assess the performance standard of the candidate.

3.3 Is it necessary for international applicants to submit SAT, IELTS (English Language Testing System), or TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) scores?

TOEFL, IELTS and SAT are not required for admission to YST.

3.4 Will I be given credits if I have a diploma in music?

Applicants who have a diploma in music (obtained locally or abroad through full-time studies) must first meet the admission requirements to NUS. Obtaining a diploma from e.g. NAFA, LaSalle does not automatically shorten a student’s candidature period for the BMus programme at YST, which is a 4-year duration. Transfer of credits may be considered by the academic office on a case-by-case basis.

3.5 If I wish to transfer to YST from another BMus programme, will I enter at the same level that I am at my current school?

It is possible to do so, but you will need to compete for a place through an audition process. In addition, your placement will be decided by the audition panel and the academic office who will consider a couple of factors. Firstly, not only must you be shortlisted for consideration of an offer of admission, but you will also need to be playing at a level beyond the first-year students. Secondly, the academic office will decide which credits are transferable and you will need to have done very well for your academic studies in order to justify the transfer.

All transfer students must be in-residence for a minimum of two years in order to receive a degree from NUS.

4. APPLICATION RESULT +

4.1 When will I know the results of my application?

Results will be announced via email from March to April 2019.

4.2 I have been placed on waitlist. What are my chances for an offer of admission?

For students who have been placed on waitlist, we will notify you again if there is any vacancy by 1 June.

4.3 If I cannot accept your offer of admission and/or scholarship, will you hold my acceptance and scholarship so that I can begin classes the following year?

At YST, we are not able to allow an applicant to defer acceptance from one year to the next. Admission to YST is competitive and there are limited vacancies for each major. Priority will be given to the applicants most qualified in each particular year. If you are unable to accept an offer for a particular year, you will need to submit a new application and re-audition if you wish to be considered for admission the following year.

5. FINANCIAL AID AND TUITION GRANT +

5.1 Are scholarships available?

YST currently offers a generous financial aid package that covers the subsidised tuition fees and all compulsory University fees, on-campus housing subsidy (subject to successful housing application) and living allowance to all students accepted into the BMus programme. This financial aid package is valid for the duration of the course of study, subject to students maintaining an acceptable level of performance throughout their candidature. There is no bond obligation for this package.

5.2 How do I apply for a scholarship?

Currently, all successful applicants are awarded the generous financial aid package for the BMus programme. Candidates are not required to submit a separate application for this package.

5.3 What is the Tuition Grant?

The Tuition Grant is a grant provided by the Government of Singapore to help students manage the costs of full-time tertiary education in Singapore. Eligible Singaporeans, Singapore PRs and international students enrolled in full-time undergraduate courses at our autonomous universities, including NUS, may take up the Tuition Grant. Students who have not previously received the Tuition Grant to read a degree programme in Singapore are eligible to apply.

The NUS tuition fee for the BMus programme in the 2018/19 academic year is S$113,150. Currently, all students accepted to the BMus programme will receive a generous financial aid package from YST to offset the reduced tuition fee, making tuition free for all.

Bachelor of Music Subsidised Tuition Fees + Tuition Grant = Annual Tuition
Singapore Citizen S$13,450 + Tuition Grant = S$113,150
Singapore PR S$18,850 + Tuition Grant = S$113,150
International Student S$28,800 + Tuition Grant = S$113,150

If you are a Singapore PR or international student who applies and accepts the Tuition Grant, you are required to work for a Singapore entity for 3 years to discharge the obligations to the Singapore public for the high subsidy of your university education upon graduation. This is subject to you finding a job in Singapore (or overseas with a Singapore-based company) and you will be required to actively seek out job opportunities upon graduation.

There is no bond obligation for Singaporeans who receive the Tuition Grant.

You may find more FAQs on the Tuition Grant here.

5.4 I have obtained a bachelor’s degree in an unrelated field from a local autonomous university. Am I eligible for the Tuition Grant?

You will be eligible for the Tuition Grant only if you have not received the Tuition Grant previously towards subsiding your tuition fees for the bachelor’s degree. If you have previously received the grant, then you are not eligible to apply for the grant to read any second degree in the local university. As the financial aid package offered by YST only covers the subsidised tuition fee, you will have to bear the remaining amount which is about $99,700 (based on prevailing tuition fees for Singaporeans) per year at your own expense.

6. GENERAL +

6.1 What is the relationship between YST and NUS?

YST is an autonomous school within the NUS. As such, students at YST are NUS students and have access to most of the opportunities and activities available to students at the University. A degree from YST is simultaneously an NUS degree and carries with it the same assumption of excellence as any other NUS degree, in addition to the musical credentials from YST.

6.2 Can I choose my studio teacher?

Where there is a choice of studio teachers, you may indicate your choice of studio teacher during online application. For students offered admission to YST, studio assignments will be announced in your offer letter or weeks leading to freshmen orientation in July.

6.3 I have just started learning the piano and would like to enrol in classes at YST. Is this arrangement possible?

Unfortunately, we do not offer part-time courses for major study. You may wish to contact private music schools in Singapore directly regarding your query.

 

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