Harvard/Berklee Dual Degree Program

This dual degree program is offered in concert with Harvard University's Department of Music
Note: In order to be eligible for this program you must apply to and be accepted at both Berklee and Harvard. To apply to Harvard, go here.

In July 2016, Berklee announced a dual bachelor's/master's program with Harvard. Upon completion of the program, you'll earn a Bachelor of Arts (A.B.) at Harvard College and a Master of Music (M.M.) or a Master of Arts (M.A.) at Berklee. The program is designed for exceptional musicians interested in a diverse range of artistic careers as well as an elite liberal arts education.

During the first three years of the program, you will focus on the A.B. curriculum in the concentration of your choice at Harvard and take private instruction at Berklee. You will also take ensembles at either institution. Each semester, you must pass the appropriate instrumental proficiency assessment at Berklee. At the end of the third year, you will also complete an audition and interview to confirm your readiness to begin the Master of Music or Master of Arts program at Berklee. In the fourth year, you will complete all requirements for the A.B. degree at Harvard.

During the summers throughout your first four years, you may choose to complete additional appropriate course work to prepare for Berklee’s M.A. or M.M. programs. You may do so at Berklee’s campuses in Boston or Valencia, Spain, or online.

In the fourth year, you'll complete all requirements for the A.B. degree at Harvard. In your fifth year of study*, you'll complete all requirements for the M.M. or M.A. degree from Berklee.**

Berklee's M.M. and M.A. programs include those in scoring for film, television, and video games; global entertainment and music business; music production, technology, and innovation; contemporary performance; and music therapy.

For more information about this program, contact the Graduate Studies Department at graduatestudies@berklee.edu

*The fifth year of study includes a short (six- or seven-week) summer semester.

**The M.A. in music therapy is a five-semester, part-time, blended program following the completion of the A.B. Those who choose the M.A. in music therapy will earn the bachelor's and master's degrees in six years, after earning board certification.

Entrance Requirements

To participate in the program, you must apply to both Harvard and Berklee, indicating on your Berklee application your interest in the Harvard/Berklee dual degree option. You must complete all of the required components of both applications, including an audition and interview with Berklee prior to acceptance.

Alternatively, Harvard students, during your first year of study, may apply to the dual degree program. To do so, you must complete a Berklee application, including an audition and interview with Berklee prior to acceptance.

Costs

Costs consist of four years of Harvard tuition and fees for the A.B. program, and one year of Berklee tuition and fees for the M.A.* or M.M. program. For private lessons, ensembles, and necessary preparatory courses at Berklee during fall and spring semesters in the first four years, students are charged $8,000 annually.** Students who choose to participate in summer semesters at Berklee in Boston or Valencia, Spain, or online, pay the regular summer session tuition and fees.

*The M.A. in music therapy is a five-semester, part-time, blended program; the costs are equivalent to one year of full-time study.

**Depending on the master's program selected, students may be required to meet Berklee's laptop and software requirements.

What the Program Gives You

Upon completion of this program, you will:

  • synthesize liberal arts and musical knowledge;
  • synthesize contemporary harmonic and stylistic practices;
  • create and improvise music in a liberal arts context;
  • develop your own identity as an artist and/or music professional; and
  • develop a sustainable career plan.
Required Courses

Year 1 – Fall and Spring

  • Orientation at Harvard College and Berklee College of Music
  • Regular first-year curriculum at Harvard College
  • Private lessons (one hour per week) at Berklee
  • Introductory courses at Harvard or Berklee, per advisement
  • Ensemble participation, by advisement, at Harvard or Berklee
  • Berklee proficiency assessments in student’s principal instrument (required at the end of each semester of private instruction study)

Years 1, 2, 3, and 4 – Summer (Optional)

Berklee offers summer sessions at campuses in Boston and Valencia, Spain, and online at Berklee Online. You may choose to participate in summer sessions for the regular tuition and fees of those programs. Make selections based on advising and availability, in accordance with your intended master's degree.

Years 2 and 3 – Fall and Spring

In the fall of your second year, you'll choose a field of concentration in accordance with Harvard’s academic requirements. When you're enrolled in the dual Harvard/Berklee program, you may choose to concentrate in music or any other subject. If you're planning to enroll in the M.A. in Music Therapy, you must select music as your area of concentration or joint concentration. You'll also be asked to indicate your likely area of graduate study at Berklee. For those choosing the M.A. in Music Therapy, there is an additional audition and interview at the Berklee Music Therapy Department.

  • Private lessons at Berklee (or appropriate master’s preparation courses at Berklee)
  • Intermediate and advanced courses at Harvard or Berklee, per advisement
  • Ensemble participation, by advisement, at Harvard or Berklee
  • Berklee proficiency exams in student’s principal instrument (required at the end of each semester of private instruction study)

At the end of the third year, you must confirm your selected area of graduate study at Berklee; Berklee also confirms your preparedness to continue into the master’s degree. The result will be communicated to you prior to the end of Harvard’s academic year in year 3.

Year 4 – Fall and Spring

Concluding year of A.B. degree at Harvard and final preparations for entering the M.M. or M.A. degree at Berklee:

  • Concluding curricular requirements for A.B. degree at Harvard
  • Private lessons at Berklee (or appropriate master’s preparation courses at Berklee)
  • Ensemble participation, by advisement, at Harvard or Berklee
  • Berklee proficiency exams in student’s principal instrument (required at the end of each semester of private instruction study)
  • Additional courses per advisement
  • For those entering the M.A. in Music Therapy, completion of all music therapy courses and requirements, including internship and board certification

Year 5 – Fall, Spring, and Summer (September to July)

You'll enter and complete your selected M.A.* or M.M. program—including all course requirements and the culminating experience (thesis) project.

*The M.A. in music therapy is a five-semester part-time blended program that begins after completing board certification.