Tuition & Fees

Tuition  |  Fees and Deposits  |  Payment of Tuition and Fees  |  Health Insurance  |  
Cost of Attendance  |  Estimate Your Bill  |  Contact

The Conservatory's tuition for the 2014-2015 academic year is ($19,450 per semester). Tuition for the 2014-2015 year will be set by the Board of Trustees in spring 2014. The following is a breakdown of charges for different types of matriculation on a yearly and per semester basis:

2014-2015 Tuition:

Full-time student (undergraduate and graduate)
$40,000 annually / $20,000 per semester

Part-time student, per academic credit (undergraduate and graduate)
$3,528 annually / $1,764 per semester

Private instruction for part-time student (one hour lesson per week)
$16,000 annually / $8,000 per semester

Minor instrument instruction (available to full-time students only)
  • One hour lesson per week: $8,944 annually / $4,472 per semester
  • One half-hour lesson per week: $4,472 annually / $2,236 per semester

Full-time students who wish to register for credits in excess of 18.5 in the fall or spring (not counting ensembles) must pay a per-credit fee of $1,764.

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2014-2015 Fees and Deposits, per Semester:

Application Fee (non-refundable): $100
Enrollment Reservation Deposit (refundable only if student has registered): $500
Library/Security Deposit (new students only): $50
Comprehensive Fee (per semester): $290
Health Services Fee (per semester): $80
Muni Transportation Fee (annually) : $252
Term Payment Plan Fee: (per semester): $50 
Late Registration Fee
First week: $75
Each subsequent week: $50
Late Payment Fee: $75
Late Tuition Payment Plan Fee: $25
Non-Sufficient Funds Fee: $25
Special Examination Fee (for all or part of placement examinations,course examinations or ensemble auditions outside of the orientation schedule): $30
Transcripts (one issued without charge; fee charged for all subsequent transcripts): $10

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Payment of Tuition and Fees

The $100 application fee must accompany the Application for Admission ( The $500 enrollment reservation is required of all new and returning students and is credited to the tuition payment due for the fall semester. The enrollment reservation is non-refundable if the student fails to register, and is due from new graduate and postgraduate students by April 15, from new undergraduate students by May 1 and from returning students by June 15.

The balance of fall tuition and fees must be paid at the time of fall registration, and the spring tuition and fees must be paid at the time of spring registration.  Students may also enroll in the Term Payment Plan which requires a $50 participation fee.  More information can be found on the Term Payment Plan page.

Payments can be made by cash, check, or credit card:

  • Checks can be mailed to the Conservatory care of the Business Office, or they can be brought in person.  Checks should be made out to "The San Francisco Conservatory of Music" or "SFCM".
  • Credit card payments can be made over the phone or in person.
    • You may mail in your credit card information to the Business Office.  If you do so, please include the Card Number, Expiration Date and Billing Address.
    • Foreign credit cards are accepted.
    • Please DO NOT email your credit card information.  As part of our PCI Compliance, we don't send or receive credit card information in unencrypted forms.
  • If you wish to wire funds to the Conservatory, please contact Jan Vierra at for further instructions.

Health Insurance

All full-time students (12 credits and more) are required to have medical insurance. All domestic, full-time students who are not covered under a comparable U.S.-issued health insurance policy must purchase health insurance offered through the Conservatory before being allowed to register. All international, full-time students must purchase health insurance offered through the Conservatory before being allowed to register. Students enrolled for less than 12 credits (part-time status) are not eligible to buy insurance through the Conservatory. Students who take a leave of absence may also be ineligible to continue their health insurance policy through the Conservatory. Students enrolled in Optional Practical Training (OPT) are eligible, but not required, to enroll.  More information can be found on the Student Health Insurance Plan page.

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Cost of Attendance

Students should come to the Conservatory fully prepared to meet their tuition, fees and living expenses. Prospective students should be realistic about providing for their schooling and living expenses while attending the Conservatory. Part-time jobs may be available through the school or in the community, but it is unrealistic to think that a student can fully cover tuition and living expenses through such employment.

Although living expenses will vary considerably, the following figures should help students plan a budget for the academic year:

2014 - 2015 SFCM Student Budget
(budget is based on 9-month academic year)
Budget CategoryLiving withLiving Living IndependentlyPer Semester
 ParentsIndependently(needs health insurance)fall/spring
Tuition    $40,000 $40,000 $40,000 $20,000
Comprehensive Fee$580$580$580$290
Health Service Fee $160 $160 $80 
Books and Supplies$750$750$750 
Food and Housing $6,500 $13,000 
*Muni Class Pass$252$252$252 
Personal $2,500 $2,500 $2,500 
*Health Insurance  $2,436$1,015/$1,421
Total Budget $50,742 $57,242 $59,552 


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Estimate Your Bill for Fall 2014

At this time we cannot provide an official Billing Statement until a student has registered for classes.  Tuition and fees are not assessed until they have registered because tuition can change based on type of registration (full time, part time, more-than-full time) or if the student enrolls in a minor instrument, etc.  Furthermore, the Business Office will not receive an official record of Financial Aid awards or Health Insurance waivers until mid January.

However, you can estimate your bill with the following information:

Fall 2014 Tuition and Fees:

Tuition: $20,000 (based on standard full-time enrollment)
Comprehensive fee: $290
Health Services fee: $80
Muni Fee: $140*
Health Insurance: $1,015**
TOTAL Tuition and Fees: $21,525

* The Muni fee decreases from the Fall to the Spring semester.  In the fall, the fee covers five months (September through January).  In the Spring it only covers four months (February through May) so the fee is reduced.  The Fall 2014 charge is $140.

** The Health Insurance fee increases from the Fall to the Spring semester.  In the fall, the fee covers five months (September through January).  In the Spring it covers seven months, which includes the summer (February through August) so the fee is increased.  The Fall 2014 charge is $1,015.

To calculate your own balance due:

If you plan to waive the Conservatory Health Insurance, subtract 1,015.

If you have accepted any financial aid awards, subtract the amount that applies to the Spring semester.
NOTE: these values are often given by the year.  Make sure to only subtract half of that, or the Spring portion of that aid.

If you will be living in Golden Gate Hall or Columbus Housing please add the applicable Fall semester housing costs.

If you did not attend for the Fall semester, and have paid an enrollment deposit, that amount will be applied to the first semesters tuition; subtract $500.
NOTE: this ONLY applies if you did not attend the Fall semester.

If this is your first term at the Conservatory, add $50 for your Library Deposit.

This should be your total amount due for the Fall semester.

If you wish to enroll in the Term Payment Plan (TPP) your balance due will be divided into four equal payments, and the $50 enrollment charge will be due with the first payment.  More information can be found on the TPP page.

Contact the Business Office

Business Office
50 Oak Street
San Francisco, CA 94102-6011

Jan VierraStudent Accounts Administrator

Shula Aliac, Senior Accounting Manager