Undergraduate Application & Timeline

Click on the links below to start your Bienen School Supplement and review detailed application instructions from the Office of Undergraduate Admission.

Start your Bienen School Supplement
View All Northwestern University Requirements

Undergraduate Application Checklist


All prescreening recordings and music program requirements should be uploaded to the Bienen School of Music Supplement.

Do not mail any materials to the Bienen School of Music; items that are mailed to the Bienen School of Music will not be returned.


Fall 2021 Freshman Early Decision Timeline

August 1
Bienen School Supplement available online
October 15
Prescreening (if required) and Bienen School Supplement due || NOTE: This deadline also applies to BA applicants.
November 1
Audition repertoire videos (for BM applicants whose instrument does not require prescreening) and Bienen School Supplement due
November 1
Common Application due through Northwestern
November 15
BM Composition applicant portfolios and Bienen School Supplement due
November 23
Live virtual auditions must be completed by || NOTE: More information about Early Decision auditions has been sent directly to applicants. Please consult our Audition page for more details.
Mid-December
Northwestern admission decision released
February 1
Enrollment deposit due

NOTE: Finalists from the QuestBridge application process applying to the Bienen School must submit prescreening materials by October 19, 2020 and complete their performance audition before November 13, regardless of whether applying Early or Regular Decision.

Fall 2021 Freshman Regular Decision Timeline

August 1
Bienen School Supplement available online
December 1
Prescreening (if required) and Bienen School Supplement due || NOTE: This deadline also applies to BA applicants.
January 3
Audition repertoire videos (for BM applicants whose instrument does not require prescreening) and Bienen School Supplement due
January 3
Common Application due through Northwestern
February 1
BM Composition applicant portfolios and Bienen School Supplement due
February 4-14
Live virtual auditions || NOTE: Please consult our Audition page for more details.
March
Northwestern admission decision released
May 1
Enrollment deposit due

NOTE: Bienen School transfer applicants are strongly encouraged to apply via Northwestern’s Regular Decision round. Application and audition deadlines may be found above. Transfer applicants who do not submit a Bienen School Supplement by December 1 will have to wait until after March 15 to schedule a live audition.

Fall 2021 Transfer Applicant Timeline

March 15
Bienen School Supplement due
March 15
Prescreening materials, portfolios, or recorded final auditions due
March 15
Common Application and all supplemental materials due
April
Live virtual transfer auditions || NOTE: Please consult our Audition page for more details.
May
Northwestern admission decision released

Dual Degree and Double Major Applicants

Applicants interested in pursuing a double major or dual degree should indicate this on the Common Application. 

When you apply for a double major or dual degree and complete all requirements, you will receive a single admission decision from Northwestern University’s Office of Undergraduate Admission. This decision will include information on which school(s) you have been accepted to within Northwestern University, including the Bienen School of Music. Northwestern offers dual degrees with the Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences; the McCormick School of Engineering; the Medill School of Journalism, Media, and Integrated Marketing Communications; the School of Communication; and the School of Education and Social Policy.

Learn more about Dual Degrees and Double Majors

International Applicants

See complete requirements for international applicants

International applicants to Northwestern include citizens of foreign countries in foreign education systems, citizens of foreign countries in the United States educational system, and United States citizens studying abroad. All applicants to Northwestern, international and domestic, apply using the same process and timeline. Northwestern University requires all undergraduate applicants, whether educated in the United States or abroad, to submit the results of the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT Reasoning Test) or; American College Test (ACT) with writing.

International applicants must demonstrate a high level of English proficiency. An evaluation of English proficiency includes reviewing all test scores, grades in classes taught in English, writing samples, and comments by recommenders. International applicants whose first language is not English are required to submit exam results from either the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), the International English Language Testing System (IELTS), or the Duolingo English Test (DET). International applicants who complete 3 to 4 years of their secondary school curriculum in English and score 650 or above on the Critical Reading section of the SAT Reasoning Test are not required to submit a TOEFL, IELTS, or DET score. Northwestern does not accept scores from English proficiency exams not listed above, including the TOEFL Institutional Testing Program (ITP).