The Cleveland Institute of Music welcomes students from many countries. Today, nearly 30% of students enrolled at CIM are from outside the United States. Admission requirements are the same for all applicants, regardless of citizenship. Additional procedures, however, result from immigration regulations, different educational backgrounds, and financial considerations.
CIM's International Student Advisor, Kristen Zalar, offers many resources to support international students and enrich their educational experience. Please do not hesitate to contact Ms. Zalar with your questions or concerns.
To be considered, each document you submit in a language other than English must be accompanied by a notarized English translation from the issuing institution or a recognized translation service. If degree equivalency cannot be determined, you will be required to provide the transcript through World Education Services. We will not accept documents submitted without notarized translations.
For a complete list of required supporting documents, please see the page that corresponds with your situation:
Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL)
If English is not an official language in your home country, you must complete the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) or IELTS (International English Language Testing System). The CIM school code for TOEFL is 1124. When registering for the test or when ordering a score report, no departmental code is necessary. Log into your TOEFL iBT or IELTS account to order a score report.
You must upload your TOEFL or IELTS score report at the time of application. No audition will be scheduled without the required TOEFL or IELTS score (see below).
Minimum scores required to schedule an audition:
- Bachelor of Music - 61 (iBT) or 6 IELTS
- Master of Music - 61 (iBT) or 6 IELTS
- Doctor of Musical Arts - 90 (iBT) or 7.5 IELTS
- Artist Certificate, Artist Diploma, and Professional Studies - 61 (iBT) or 6 IELTS
Minimum scores required to be considered for acceptance:
- Bachelor of Music - 79 (iBT) or 6.5 IELTS
- Master of Music - 79 (iBT) or 6.5 IELTS
- Doctor of Musical Arts - 100 (iBT) or 7.5 IELTS
- Artist Certificate, Artist Diploma, and Professional Studies - 61 (iBT) or 6.5 IELTS
English Language Training Program
Bachelor's and Master's applicants who are accepted and have a TOEFL score between 61 and 78 or IELTS score of 6 will be automatically enrolled in CIM's English Language Training Program. This program is held during the summer prior to orientation, and students enrolled in this program will continue with English as a Second Language classes in the fall. While the program is required for certain students, it is open to any international student wishing to improve their English skills prior to the start of classes.
The program consists of 2 classroom-based courses and 1 computer-based lab. Students requiring TOEFL preparation will attend a 3-day/week classroom-based course and engage in a 2-day instructor-led online preparation course. Students will also learn about American (and Cleveland) culture while honing their English skills both within the classroom and during daily outside excursions. There will be plenty of time for music practice in CIM's practice rooms.
- Speaking and Structure: This intensive class gives students ample listening, speaking, vocabulary and grammar practice in meaningful situations. Activities will sharpen students' listening skills, expand their 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. As part of this course, students will visit Yoder's Amish Home to experience Amish culture first-hand. Students will also learn the practicalities of living and studying in Cleveland.
- ESL Lab: Students also have access to the online interactive language courseware to work on enhancement practices at their own time and pace. Those preparing for the TOEFL will engage in an instructor-led online program of study.
- Optional TOEFL Preparation: This course will teach students tips and strategies for maximizing TOEFL scores and include in-class writing and speaking workshops and ample online practice with the integrated course and practice test component.
After-Class Activities and Friday/Weekend Excursions
After-class activities will be in the neighborhood (University Circle) or a short RTA (Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority) ride away. Examples include a coffee shop crawl, Severance Hall (home of The Cleveland Orchestra) tour, tours of University Circle museums, geocaching, etc. Friday/Weekend excursions will include Yoder's Amish Home, Blossom Music Center (summer home of The Cleveland Orchestra), Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, Cleveland Metroparks Zoo, etc.
Summer 2015 Information
July 20-August 14
$4000 tuition and room
$405 (est.) food
All students will live in Cutter House, CIM's residence hall, which has a full kitchen for your use; there is a grocery store within walking distance. Graduate students will need to find off-campus housing by the end of the program; undergraduates will remain in the residence hall.
Passport and visa 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 authoritative documentation concerning entry into the U.S. (passport, visa, etc.).
During the application process, we will email audition date confirmations to everyone planning live auditions in Cleveland. Once your audition date is confirmed, you may use a copy of this email to obtain a B-2 visa for entry into the United States. 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 Admission Office at email@example.com.
Financial aid for international students
Prior to confirming your student status, the U.S. Dept. 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. While this requirement only pertains to ability to pay for 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 it 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 GPA, academic and artistic progress requirements are being met). Newly admitted international applicants must show documentation of ability to pay prior to being confirmed as a new student and this process should be complete by the April 15 (graduate) or May 1 (undergraduate) Intent to Enroll deadlines.
For more information, we encourage you to visit these sites: