At the Cleveland Institute of Music, nearly 30 percent of our enrolled students come from outside the United States. While admission requirements are the same for all applicants, regardless of citizenship, additional procedures have resulted from immigration regulations. These include the assessment of educational backgrounds and financial support. We are happy to offer resources and support to our international students and enrich their educational experience. Please do not hesitate to contact the admission office with any questions or concerns.
All international students are required to submit original transcripts that must include degree earned (if graduated), GPA, dates of attendance/graduation and grading scale. If your school does not provide a notarized English translation with the preceding information, an official credential evaluation must be prepared by a National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES) member organization.
All international students who enroll in CIM will be required to have their final transcript submitted through an NACES member organization for evaluation prior to registration for the semester of enrollment.
SpanTran is a NACES member company that has created a custom application for CIM. Their custom application will make sure you get the right kind of evaluation and a discount on the cost of that evaluation. To access their custom application, click here.
If English is not an official language in your home country, you must complete one of the accepted English language proficiency exams. Any exams taken more than two years before the application period will not be accepted. Test scores are due on December 1. No audition will be scheduled without a required English language proficiency exam.
The minimum scores below must come from one single test. CIM does not accept TOEFL’s MyBest scores.
TOEFL/IELTS waivers are not guaranteed; however, applicants with three or more consecutive years in an English-speaking institution are eligible to apply.
Waivers are reviewed on a case-by-case basis after a complete application for admission is submitted. It is advised to turn in the waiver request and application prior to the December 1 deadline. The following materials must be uploaded to the application and received with a completed application.
- All required transcripts
- Most recent English language test score
- A recommendation letter from an English teacher or academic professor attesting to your English ability in their class
- Your teacher or professor’s information should be submitted on the Recommendations page of the application in addition to your two required recommendation letters
Bachelor and master of music applicants accepted to CIM with a TOEFL score between 61 and 78 or IELTS score of 6 are required to enroll in CIM’s English Language Training Program. This program is held during the summer through a live, virtual class beginning in July 2024.
Although the program is required for certain students, it is open to any accepted international student that may want to improve English skills before attending CIM.
- Speaking and Structure: A virtual, live class with Ms. O'Riordan for 1 hour and 30 minutes, Monday-Friday. This class gives you ample practice in listening, speaking, vocabulary and grammar skills in meaningful situations. Activities will sharpen your listening skills, expand your spoken language abilities in both formal and informal situations, stimulate thought-provoking discussion and critical thinking, and build vocabulary and academic writing skills.
- American Culture: This course will cover American customs, holidays, a brief overview of American history, Cleveland history, diversity and traditions. You will also learn the practicalities of living and studying in Cleveland.
- American Academy Culture: You will learn about class discussion, collaboration, problem and project-based learning, and giving presentations through out online learning system, Canvas, for two hours daily, six days a week.
- Academic reading via Newsela: An effective research-proven program to quickly develop academic reading.
- TOEFL or IELTS practice: An additional 30 minutes per week will be offered to each student one-on-one for target speaking practice, TOEFL or IELTS practice, and for Chinese students planning to take TOEFL ITP Plus, Vericant Interview practice. At the conclusion of the course, students will need to reach the minimum TOEFL or IELTS score requirements.
Before leaving your home country, you must obtain a passport from your country of citizenship. The passport expiration date must be at least six months later than your intended date of entry into the United States. International applicants who are already in the U.S. must also be prepared to provide documentation concerning entry into the U.S. (passport, visa, etc.).
During the application process, we will email and confirm audition dates for all students planning to audition live in Cleveland. Once your audition date is confirmed, you may use a copy of the email to obtain a B-2 visa for entry into the U.S. A U.S. Consular Post may, in some cases, additionally require a letter of invitation from CIM for the visa interview. You may request an invitation letter from the CIM Admissions Office at email@example.com.
Prior to confirming your student status, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security requires you to document the ability to pay for the first year at CIM. You must obtain the I-20 needed to get the F-1 visa. Although this requirement pertains to your ability to pay for only the first year, please plan ahead and consider your ability to fund your remaining time at CIM.
If you have a sponsor or other aid to help pay the first year, and that aid is not available in subsequent years, CIM shall not be expected to make up the difference. Remember, the CIM Scholarship is renewable at the same dollar amount each year for the normal duration of the program (assuming you continue to meet our GPA, academic and artistic progress requirements). Newly admitted international applicants must show documentation of ability to pay prior to being confirmed as a new student, and you should complete this process by the April 15 (graduate) or May 1 (undergraduate) Intent to Enroll deadlines.