Dual Degree with NEC

The Tufts/New England Conservatory (NEC) Five-Year Combined Degree program provides an opportunity for students who want to combine an intensive music program with a strong liberal arts curriculum. It is a difficult but rewarding program for talented students who are prepared to make a commitment to both areas of study.

Course of Study

This program leads to a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree from Tufts and a Bachelor of Music degree from the conservatory. Students may pursue majors in orchestral instruments, piano, composition, guitar, voice, historical performance, organ, jazz studies, contemporary improvisation, music theory, and music history at the NEC and concentrations in any area of the School of Arts and Sciences (except music) at Tufts.

Five-Year Combined Degree students must complete a minimum of 82 credit hours at NEC, including requirements in studio, ensemble, chamber music and the following core requirements:

  • Music History: 12 credits
  • Studio Instruction: 24-40 credits (depending on major)
  • Ensemble: 6-8 credits (depending on major)
  • Artist Seminar: 1 credit
  • Music Theory: 21 credits
  • Career Skills: 2 credits
  • Other Departmental Requirements (see Academic Catalog)

Students must also fulfill the foundation, distribution and concentration requirements for a BA or a BS degree at Tufts (except arts distribution). Students take 24 course credits at Tufts.


Prospective students interested in the Five-Year Tufts/NEC program must submit admissions applications and financial aid applications to both Tufts and the NEC. Students must be admitted at both institutions to join the combined degree program.

Please note that application dates for the two schools vary - the New England Conservatory priority deadline for fall applications is November 1st and the deadline for fall applications is December 1st, whereas Tufts' Early Decision I deadline is November 1st and Regular Decision or Early Decision II deadline is January 1st.

For more information about applying to the New England Conservatory, visit the NEC Admissions site, or contact them at admission@necmusic.edu or 617-585-1101.

Download PDF of more detailed information on the Tufts/NEC Combined Degree Program.