Financial Aid

Financial Aid

Financial Aid for Undergraduate Students

Students are considered for a variety of need-based and merit-based scholarships, including:

  • School of Music Merit-Based Scholarships
    All undergraduate applicants (who apply as a music major as their primary major to the University of Illinois) are automatically considered for merit-based scholarships from the School of Music. These awards are made at the recommendation of faculty and are based on the applicant’s audition and application. Scholarships range from several hundred dollars up to full tuition. The School of Music merit-based scholarship are applied to the cost of tuition and do not cover fees, room, or board.
  • University of Illinois Merit-Based Scholarships
    Many of these are for first-year and transfer students in any college based on academic excellence, though awards are also given out based on major.
  • Need-based Financial Aid
    To be considered for need-based financial aid, students must completed the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). For more information, visit the Office of Student Financial Aid website.
  • Illinois Commitment
    Four years free tuition and fees for Illinois Residents whose family income is $67,100 or less.
  • Talent Competitions
    Students can participate in talent competitions as applicants or current music students. The Discover FAA High School Competition is intended for students in grades 9-12 for scholarships to attend the University of Illinois as a music major. Current music majors can participate in scholarship competitions as well.

Financial Aid for Graduate Students

The School of Music offers financial aid to graduate students in the form of graduate tuition scholarships, assistantships, and fellowships. All students who apply by stated deadlines are considered for these merit-based awards.

  • School of Music Fellowships
    Fellowships are one-year renewable awards carrying a full tuition and partial fee waiver and a stipend of $5,000 up to $12,000.
  • University of Illinois Fellowships
    It is recommended that applicants who wish to be considered for campus academic fellowships submit or complete an audition as early as possible.
  • School of Music Assistantships
    The School of Music typically awards Teaching and Research Assistantships.  These are one-year renewable awards with a stipend. Assistantships at 25% or higher carry a full tuition waiver and partial fee waiver with a stipend.
  • University of Illinois Assistantships
    Graduate Assistantships are available through other departments on campus and require a separate application. For a list of available positions, visit the Graduate Assistantship Clearinghouse.
  • School of Music Graduate Tuition Scholarships
    One-year renewable awards that include a partial tuition and fee waiver.

Need-Based Financial Aid

Need-based aid for domestic students (grants, loans, and work-study) is administered by the Office of Student Financial Aid.  The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is required for consideration.

School of Music Policy on Years of Aid

  • MM students: can be considered for up to two years of aid from the School of Music
  • DMA / PhD students: are generally considered for up to three years of aid from the School of Music; however, some programs, including Composition, Music Education, and Musicology, may be able to offer additional years of assistance as circumstances permit.

Financial Aid – Requirements for Graduate Applicants

  • Domestic applicants must complete the FAFSA and indicate that they are interested in Federal Work Study. A large percentage of our assistantship funding comes from the Federal Work-Study program and applicants will not be considered until this has been completed. Please forward a copy of your Student Aid Report (SAR) to
  • Non-Native English speakers must submit a recent iBT score in order to be considered for teaching or graduate assistantships. Students without an official score of 24 or higher on the spoken portion of the TOEFL will not be considered for assistantships.


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