Degree studies in Early Music are a part of the Classical Music Performance programme. The main subject in the department of Early Music is one of the following period instruments: wind instrument (Baroque oboe, recorder, traverso, and in the 2.5-year programme also Baroque bassoon), string instrument (Baroque cello, Baroque violin, or viola da gamba), harpsichord, or lute.
Admissions schedule 2022
- Application period: Send your application in Studyinfo portal between 5 January 2022 8 am EET and 19 January 2022 3 pm EET
- Submit required attachments and possible advance assignments at latest 26 January 2022 3 pm EET
- Sibelius Academy confirms your eligibility to apply at latest 25 February
A preliminary schedule of the entrance examinations will be published in January 2022.
- Applicants demonstrating their language skills with a language skills certificate: Submit your test result certificate at latest 20 May 2022 3 pm EET
- Sibelius Academy publishes admissions results 3 June 2022
- Confirm your study place at latest 15 July 2022 3 pm EET:
- Officially accept your study place
- Register for the academic year
- Conditionally admitted applicants: Submit the required degree certificate
- Students who are required to pay tuition fees: Pay your tuition fee
- Waiting list procedure ends 2 August 2022 3 pm EET
- New students’ studies begin in August 2022
Who can apply?
A person with the background education required for the degree programme in question and sufficient language skills may apply for studies.
In addition, a person who completes the required background education after the end of the application period, but no later than 15 July 2022 at 3 pm EEST is eligible to apply. In that case, the admission decision is conditional until the applicant submits a certificate of the completed degree. If the applicant fails to submit the certificate by said deadline, the study place will be cancelled.
The Sibelius Academy may, at its discretion, also accept a temporary certificate issued by the educational institution if it indicates that the applicant has completed all studies required for the degree and will receive the degree certificate later.
Sibelius Academy will check every applicant’s eligibility before the entrance examination.
Students are admitted to the Sibelius Academy based on their performance in the entrance examination. Certificate-based admissions or quotas for first-time applicants are not in place.
Master’s degree (2.5 years)
A person who has completed at least one of the following is eligible to apply:
- A lower university degree in music (Bachelor)
- A university of applied sciences degree in music
- A foreign degree or qualification in music that provides eligibility for corresponding higher education studies in the awarding country
- A lower university degree in another field and, additionally, higher education studies in music.
Some programmes may have other background education requirements in addition to those above.
The Sibelius Academy may require that a person admitted to study towards a master’s degree complete complementary studies of a scope equivalent to a maximum of one year of studies in addition to the minimum number of ECTS credits required by the degree programme in order for them to attain the skills required in the training. In principle, complementary studies must be completed in the first year of study, and they must be included in the student’s personal study plan. The applicant is informed of the complementary studies required of them in connection with the admission decision. Such complementary studies must be mentioned in the programme’s admissions proposal.
Exceptions to eligibility
The applicant cannot apply for both 5.5-year and 2.5-year programmes of a single major subject or main instrument in the same year. However, if the applicant submits an application to both programmes, the Sibelius Academy will
- take account of the application for the 2.5-year programme if the applicant is eligible for it, or
- take account of the application for the 5.5-year programme if the applicant is not eligible for the 2.5-year programme.
If you have completed a higher education degree at Sibelius Academy, you cannot apply for the same main subject again, or the same main instrument in the case of Classical Music Performance.
The student admission for bachelor’s and master’s degree programmes applies to applicants who do not have a valid right to study at Uniarts Helsinki at the beginning of the applied right to study, with the exception of persons who have the vice rector’s permission to complete two degrees simultaneously. A degree student registered at Uniarts Helsinki may apply for a change of right to study within the Sibelius Academy or between academies. There are separate instructions for applying for a change of the right to study and for applying for a permission to complete two degrees simultaneously. More information on the rule of one study right can be found here.
The languages of tuition in the Classical Music Performance programme are Finnish, Swedish, and English. You must demonstrate your language proficiency in one of the abovementioned languages by the given deadline. However, the majority of group tuition at the Sibelius Academy is provided in Finnish or English.
How to apply
Submit your application in the spring’s first joint application period from 5 to 19 January 2022 by 3 pm EET in the Studyinfo portal.
Submit the supporting documents and any advance assignments in accordance with the instructions provided.
Submit the supporting documents via the Studyinfo portal as PDF files by 3 pm EET on 26 January 2022. If the documents are not in Finnish, Swedish, or English, append a translation by an authorised translator into one of these languages.
Documents required from all applicants:
- Degree certificate of the background education and a transcript of study records
If you complete your degree after the end of the application period, it is adequate to submit the degree certificate by 3 pm EEST on 15 July 2022.
In case of a foreign degree, the Sibelius Academy may request clarification on the degree’s status within the awarding country’s education system.
- Certificate demonstrating language proficiency
If you demonstrate your language proficiency based on your previous studies, the degree certificate or its appendix must clearly indicate the language in which the degree was completed. The degree demonstrating language proficiency must be completed by 3 pm EEST on 15 July 2022.
- Official proof of identity
Append a copy of your passport, EU identity card or Finnish driving licence to your application.
Applicants to programmes organised in English are also required to submit:
- A document exempting from tuition fees
If you apply to study in English, you will be liable to pay tuition fees unless you submit a document indicating that you are exempt.
Refugees, persons in a refugee-like situation and asylum seekers:
If you are unable to submit documentary evidence of your degree, you may still be deemed eligible to apply. Submit a reliable report on the completed degree that grants you eligibility to apply and an additional report explaining why the documents are not available. In addition, submit an official decision on your refugee status (asylum decision or residence permit based on protection, or a proof that such an application is pending). Submit the required documents by email to the Admissions Office by (date and time). The Sibelius Academy will make a decision on your eligibility based on the submitted report. Applicants with refugee status must provide proof of their language skills required for the studies in one of the ways specified in the selection criteria (in Language requirements).
Any advance assignments are mentioned in the target programme’s admissions criteria. The advance assignments must be submitted as attachments to the application.
The advance assignments must clearly state the applicant’s name and the programme to which they relate. Do not submit any other advance assignments than the ones requested. Upload the materials to the Studyinfo portal as early as possible. Large files may take several hours to upload if there is a lot of traffic in the system.
You can be invited to the entrance examinations if:
- you have submitted an electronic application form and the required attachments at Studyinfo portal, and
- the Dean of the Sibelius Academy deems you eligible based on the submitted documents.
The implementation of the entrance examinations for each programme is described in the programme’s admission criteria. Preliminary schedules will be published in the programmes’ admissions guides in January. The entrance examination schedules of separate programmes may overlap. If the applicant has applied for multiple programmes, they must choose which examinations they attend in case of overlaps.
A programme’s entrance examination may consist of several stages and contain multiple sub-tests. If the applicant does not participate in all of the examination’s compulsory sub-tests, they cannot be admitted as a student.
The Sibelius Academy will send applicants instructions and schedules for participation in entrance examinations in the entrance examination invitation. The exact times for individual entrance examinations are confirmed at the latest in the morning of the entrance examination day. Individual examination times cannot be changed except for compelling reasons not attributable to the applicant. Such reasons include the matriculation examination (or a corresponding event) and an accident or sudden illness (a medical certificate is required). In such cases, the examination time can only be rescheduled within the limits of the Entrance Examination Board’s working timetables.
The entrance examination is a closed event attended by the applicant, the Entrance Examination Board and the agreed assistants (for example, an accompanist, a training choir, a board assistant or the applicant’s assistant). Entrance examinations may not be recorded.
If you wish to cancel your participation in the entrance examination, notify the Sibelius Academy Admissions Office by email as soon as possible.
Individual arrangements in the entrance examination
If you require individual arrangements in the entrance examination because of a sensory or physical disability or other corresponding reason, more information on individual arrangements can be found here.
Early Music entrance examination
Applicants for this programme are not required to complete advance assignments. All applicants who have submitted their applications by the deadline and who have been found to be eligible will be invited to the entrance examination.
The main instrument exam consists of two stages. The first stage will be carried out remotely by video and the second on site at the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki.
Submit a video recording for assessment on which you perform a 5-minute repertoire of your choice with the period instrument you have listed in your application form, and which is different from the repertoire you will play in the second stage of the entrance examination. Submit the video recording via the Studyinfo portal by 15 March 2022, 3pm EET (Finnish time).
The compositions do not have to be played from memory. Compositions including accompaniment should be performed with accompaniment, if possible. The accompanying instrument may be a keyboard instrument, plucked instrument, cello, or viol. If you do not have an accompanist available, then perform the works unaccompanied.
You must play facing the camera so that your face and hands are visible at all times. The video must not be shot from too far away. You must be visible in the frame from head to knees. The video recording must not be edited. All pieces included in it must be played continuously in one uninterrupted take. If your video exceeds the 1 GB maximum size, you may divide a single-take video into smaller segments.
NOTE! A link to the instructions will be added in December 2021.
Based on the scores given for the first stage, the Board will invite some of the applicants to the second stage of the entrance examination. Applicants invited to the second stage will be notified by e-mail.
The second stage of the main instrument exam will be held on site at the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki. It includes an instrument audition and an interview.
Repertoire for the instrument audition:
- Mandatory assignment which will be sent to applicants by e-mail two weeks before the entrance examination
- Two freely selected compositions representing different stylistic periods
- Prima vista playing at the discretion of the Board
- For harpsichord and lute players: A continuo assignment which will be sent to applicants by e-mail two weeks before the entrance examination
The compositions do not have to be played from memory. Perform the repertoire with the period instrument you have listed as your main instrument on your application form.
Compositions requiring accompaniment are to be played with accompaniment. The accompanying instrument is a harpsichord. You may use your own accompanist or one provided by the university. In your application form, please indicate if you want to use a university accompanist. The Sibelius Academy does not offer the opportunity to practice with the accompanist before the entrance examination. Changes to the accompanist selection cannot be made after the deadline for the submission of the sheet music.
If you use the accompanist provided by the university:
- Submit the sheet music of your freely selected compositions as instructed in the invitation to the entrance examination. Submit the sheet music in PDF form and each composition as a single file (not one page per file). The maximum file size is 20 MB. The names of the composer and the composition as well as your name and the programme you are applying for must be stated at the beginning of the sheet music of each composition.
- Bring the same sheet music to the entrance examination as either originals or copies taped together.
The Entrance Examination Board will interview the applicant in connection with the instrument audition.
Entrance examination assessment
Applicants’ performance in the entrance examinations is assessed by programme-specifically appointed Entrance Examination Boards. The boards assess the knowledge, skills and capabilities of each applicant and their capacity to complete the degree studies within the normative duration for the completion of a degree. The assessment takes account of how the applicant’s previous education and experience reflects in their competence and assesses their competence in relation to the objectives set in the curriculum.
In addition, during the entrance examinations for early music, the Board will assess the applicants’
- artistic merits and uniqueness
- knowledge of performance practices from different periods
- stylistic awareness, musical organisation and phrasing
- technical quality (tone, intonation, motor skills).
During the interview of the entrance examination, the Board will also assess the applicant’s objectives in relation to the degree programme’s curriculum, which emphasises ensemble playing, research and seminar work.
Scoring of the entrance examination
The Board will assess the applicants’ performances in both stages on a scale of 0 to 25 points. The applicant’s score for the first stage will not affect their score for the second stage. The score for the second stage will remain the applicant’s final score.
The boards rank the applicants of each programme based on their entrance examination score. The final decision on students admitted to the programmes and those placed on the waiting list is made by the dean of the Sibelius Academy.
A study place is offered to highest scoring applicants who meet the selection criteria. Applicants ranked behind the admitted students may be placed on a waiting list in the order of their score. The waiting lists are either programme-specific or group-specific if there are several groups in a single programme. A study place will become vacant and can be offered to an applicant on a waiting list only if one of the applicants admitted to the same degree programme (or group) chooses not to accept the study place, or if someone who has been conditionally admitted fails to submit the necessary documents by the end of the deadline.
If there are no applicants who meet the admissions criteria, some programmes may choose not to admit new students. If a specific degree programme does not admit any new students, applicants to that programme cannot be placed on a waiting list.
Announcement of results
Admission results, including the names of the applicants who have given the permission to have their names published online, will be published on the Uniarts Helsinki website. In addition, each applicant can view their situation in the Studyinfo portal. Admitted applicants and those placed on the waiting list are informed of the results by email.
Applicants may request feedback on their entrance examination performance. The feedback provides the applicant with information on how the evaluation criteria stated in the admission criteria were applied in the assessment of their entrance examination. Instructions for requesting feedback will be published on the Uniarts Helsinki website in connection with the publication of the admission decision.
If you believe that the Sibelius Academy has acted contrary to its admission criteria, you can request for rectification to the student admission decision from the Sibelius Academy in writing within 14 days of the publication of the admission results.
The rectification procedure is not intended as a means for receiving feedback, asking for further information about the admission or requesting unjustified re-evaluation. Instructions for submitting a request for rectification will be published on the Uniarts Helsinki website in connection with the publication of the admission decision.
Accepting the offered study place and starting your studies
An offer of admission can be accepted either via the Studyinfo system or by filling in the confirmation form attached to the letter of acceptance and by delivering it to the admissions office. You must accept your study place by the given deadline. If the confirmation arrives late, it will not be considered.
Accepting an offer of admission is a binding choice, which cannot be changed or cancelled later on.
You must also register as attending at the Sibelius Academy before the academic year begins – more information will be sent to you along with your acceptance letter.
First-year studies begin in mid-August with an orientation period that is compulsory for all new students.
Questions or comments?
You can contact us via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Sibelius Academy Admissions Chat 23 November
What is it like to study at the Sibelius Academy and live in Helsinki? Join our admissions chat to find out! There are two sessions available on Youtube at 12 pm (UTC+2) and 8 pm (UTC+2). Links are available on this page.
Ask and apply!
Want to study at Sibelius Academy but don’t know how to get started?
Use this link to listen to the audio recording of our admissions chat from November 2020:
You can also watch our fall 2019 edition of the admissions chat in Uniarts Helsinki’s YouTube channel. In this video members of our staff and students answer your questions about the Sibelius Academy in English.