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Policies and Regulations

Withdrawal from Enrollment

A student withdrawing from The Boston Conservatory must do so in writing to the Registrar. In the event of withdrawal, leave of absence, or dismissal, charges will be determined based on the number of class days the student has attended. The date the written notice is received will be considered the official last date of attendance.

Refund Policy

Students are reminded that the refund policy on withdrawals is the official one, regardless of any payment arrangements.

Refunds are calculated for the fall and spring semesters using the following schedule:

Termination date Refund
Before the first day of classes 100%
Within 10 class days 80%
Within 15 class days 60%
Within 20 class days 40%
Within 25 class days 20%
After 25 class days none

Refunds are calculated for the Institute for Music Education (Summer) by the following schedule:

Termination date Refund
Before the first day of classes 100%
Within 3 class days 80%
Within 4 class days 60%
Within 5 class days 40%
Within 6 class days 20%
After 6 class days none

Any additional charges related to courses exceeding the maximum credit load (please refer to your individual advising manual) will be refunded according to the above refund schedule. 

The application fee and deposits toward tuition and/or room and board are not refundable. No fees (e.g., general student, student activity, health service, gym, and medical insurance) are refunded after the start of classes. The refund policy as stated above applies to tuition, room, and board charges only. 

Residents in Conservatory Housing and/or Participants in Conservatory Meal Plans

The regulations described above also pertain to room and board charges for a student who is withdrawing from the Conservatory. Students who withdraw from Conservatory housing and/or meal plans, but are not withdrawing from the Conservatory, are not eligible for a room and board refund.  In addition, students who are removed from the residence halls for disciplinary reasons are not eligible for a room and board refund.

Withdrawal and Financial Aid

Institutional Aid

Institutional financial aid is refunded using the same schedule as tuition refunds (see above).  If, for example a student left school within 10 class days, he would be charged 20% of his tuition, which means he would be allowed to keep 20% of his institutional aid (Conservatory Scholarship, Tuition Assistance Grant, etc…).

Federal Financial Aid

The federal government requires that refunds of federal aid funds be calculated in another way.  The Financial Aid Office recalculates students’ eligibility for federal funds when they withdraw, are dismissed or take a leave of absence before completing 60% of the semester.

The recalculation determines how much federal aid a student has “earned” by dividing how many calendar days the student has attended class by the number of calendar days in the semester (excluding scheduled breaks of 5 days or more).  This is based on the date of the official withdrawal received by the Registrar’s Office.  If no such official withdrawal exists, then the Financial Aid Office can use the 50% mark of the semester.

If the student has completed at least 60% of their semester, then they are said to have “earned” 100% of their federal financial aid and none of it need be returned to the federal government.

Any “unearned” aid must be returned to the federal government in the following order: (each fund is fully refunded before moving to the next fund) 

  • Direct Unsubsidized Loan
  • Direct Subsidized Loan
  • Direct Parent PLUS Loan
  • Direct Grad PLUS Loan
  • Pell Grant 
  • Academic Competitiveness Grant (ACG)
  • Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG)
  • Other Title IV Aid

If the student has received a refund before withdrawing from school, then the student may be required to repay some or all of those funds.

Any fund remaining after these restorations have been made will be refunded to the student within 30 days of the student’s termination.

State or Private Aid

State and/or private aid will be refunded to the appropriate providers if required.  The Commonwealth of Massachusetts requires that a refund calculation similar to the federal calculation be done for students who withdraw with state aid.  

Federal Loan Aid and Withdrawal

Students with federal loan aid (Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loans and Direct Grad PLUS Loans) are required by law to go through the Exit Interview process. The Exit Interview goes through your rights and responsibilities as a borrower of the federal government.  It also provides you with a listing of your federal loans, estimated repayment amounts and information on differing repayment plans.  The Exit Interview is located at  Students will need to sign in using their Social Security Number and their FAFSA pin number. If they don’t have a FAFSA pin number, they can get one at   Students will need to complete the entire Exit Interview and receive a Congratulations Notification before they are considered finished.


For more information on student loans and student loan repayment, these are a few of the many websites available:

Satisfactory Academic Progress for Federal Financial Aid

To be eligible for federal financial aid at The Boston Conservatory, a student must maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress.  Students are evaluated for academic progress every semester.  The federal government requires that students be evaluated both quantitatively and qualitatively.  The quantitative evaluation is determined by counting the number of credits earned versus those attempted.  Students must earn at least 67 percent of the credits they attempt cumulatively and by semester.  For example, if over the course of his college career, a student has taken 50 credits but fails or withdraws from several classes and earns only 25 credits, that student has earned 50 percent of all the credits he has attempted and will be placed on Financial Aid Warning.  The same is true if the student takes 12 credits in one semester and earns only six of them.  The student will have earned only 50 percent of his semester credits and will be placed on Financial Aid Warning. 

Another element of the quantitative evaluation is the maximum time frame.  At The Boston Conservatory, students must finish within the maximum time frame of 150 percent of the published length of their program.  If a student goes over the 150 percent mark, then he or she is no longer eligible for financial aid.  For example, a student in the BFA Musical Theater Program must earn 133 credits to graduate.  One hundred and fifty percent of 133 is equal to 199.5 credits.  A musical theater undergrad may only attempt 199.5 credits in order to earn the 133 credits he or she needs.  If he or she has not earned 133 credits after attempting 199.5, then he or she is no longer eligible for federal financial aid.  Please check the credit load for your individual program to determine the 150 percent mark.

The qualitative evaluation is determined by the cumulative and semester grade point average (GPA).  Undergraduate students must maintain a cumulative and semester GPA of at least 2.0 (C).  Graduate students must maintain a cumulative and semester GPA of 2.7 (B-).  At the conclusion of each semester, the GPA and credit hour load of each student are reviewed.  Letter grades of A through D are considered credits earned.  The following are considered credits not earned:

F: Failing grade
NC: No credit grade or audit
NG: No grade turned in by instructor
W: Withdrawal
I: Incomplete

Students who receive an Incomplete for a class have five weeks from the start of the next semester to earn a grade in that class.  Grades that remain Incomplete after five weeks will be replaced with an F. Satisfactory Academic Progress will be recalculated after the five-week period has passed, and any student who has not completed the minimum requirements of his or her program of study will go on either Financial Aid Warning or Financial Aid Suspension.

Transfer credits are considered to be earned, but will not be included in the GPA calculation.

Attendance during the summer will be considered in both the quantitative and qualitative evaluations of Satisfactory Academic Progress. 

Financial Aid Warning

Students who fail to complete the minimum requirements of the programs of study in any of the categories previously described are placed on Financial Aid Warning for the following semester.  Students are eligible for financial aid while on probation.  During the probationary semester, freshmen must earn a cumulative semester GPA of 1.7; other undergraduate students must earn a cumulative and semester GPA of at least 2.0; and graduate students must earn a cumulative and semester GPA of at least 3.0 and all students must earn at least 67 percent of all the credits they have attempted.

Students who fail to complete the minimum requirements of the probationary semester will be placed on Financial Aid Suspension and will have lost eligibility for federal financial aid.

Financial Aid Suspension Appeal Process

Students who have been placed on Financial Aid Suspension have the right to appeal this suspension in writing within two weeks of the notification.  The appeal should include:

      1. Why the student failed to make Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP).
      2. What has changed that will allow the student to make SAP at the next evaluation.
      3. An academic plan that illustrates how the student will complete his/her degree in a specified time frame.

Circumstances that will be considered include illness, injury, death in the family or other special circumstances.  

If a student’s appeal is approved, the student will go on Financial Aid Probation and the aid will be reinstated for one semester.  At the end of that semester the student’s cumulative and semester GPA and the number of credits earned will be re-evaluated.  If the student is not at the required level, he or she will be placed on Federal Financial Aid Suspension again.

Sometimes students need more than one semester to recover academically after being put on Financial Aid Suspension.  If a student has not made the required cumulative or semester GPA or has not earned 67 percent of his or her credits and goes on suspension again, then the student may appeal again.  Appeals in this circumstance will only be considered if the student is successfully following an academic plan.

If a student withdraws from The Boston Conservatory after being put on Financial Aid Warning, Suspension or Probation and then returns, he or she is still considered to be on Financial Aid Warning, Probation or Suspension.  The student will need to appeal the Financial Aid Suspension before any financial aid will be allowed.

Conservatory Scholarship Policy

Awards are based primarily on an appraisal of the student’s ability as demonstrated in the audition. The student’s academic standing and the needs of the institution also play a role in awarding Conservatory Scholarships.  

Scholarships are given for four years or eight semesters. They are divided by semester and credited directly to the student's account. Scholarships are awarded with the understanding that the recipient will be available for performance activities as might be required by the Conservatory. It is understood that some of these activities, such as Musical Theater & Opera Orchestras, accompanying, chamber ensembles, Dance & Theater performance, etc., may be in addition to curricular requirements. 

In order to receive a scholarship a student must be full time. 12 credits is full time for undergraduates getting a Bachelor’s degree. Students in other programs should check Academic Policies for their individual program’s full time enrollment. Students who register for full time and drop to below full time before the add/drop date, will lose their scholarship. Students who register for full time and drop to below full time after the add/drop date but before the last day of tuition refunds will have their scholarship pro-rated by the appropriate percentage.  Students in their last semester who do not need to take a full time number of credits may keep their scholarship, but at a pro-rated amount.

Scholarship Renewal

To be eligible for scholarship renewal, the recipient must have:

  • successfully earned enough credits to equal full-time enrollment
  • have satisfactorily participated in all assigned ensembles as determined by the Directors and the Division Chairs
  • must have achieved a grade of no lower than 3.0 (B) in the major subject areas
  • must have achieved a cumulative grade point average of at least 2.7 (B-).

Scholarship Probation

Failure to meet these requirements will result in scholarship probation for the next semester. During probation the student will receive his/her scholarship. If after the end of the probationary semester, the student has not met the requirements, the scholarship will be revoked.  

Scholarship Suspension Appeal Process

Students may appeal their lost scholarship by writing to the Director of Financial Aid within 10 days of receiving written notification of their loss of scholarship. The student must provide legitimate reasons for not meeting the scholarship requirements. If the scholarship committee approves the appeal, the student will have one semester to meet the scholarship requirements.

Students who have lost their scholarship may be able to earn it back if they meet all the requirements and apply in writing to the Director of Financial Aid. If their application is successful, then they will receive the scholarship for the next following semester.


Students in default on payment of Conservatory charges or Conservatory loans will be denied release of academic transcripts from the Conservatory.   Those students who are in default on federal loans may not receive federal aid from other institutions until the default has been resolved.

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