Learning Abroad

Looking to broaden your education and musical training beyond the Schulich School of Music?

Studying at another university is a great opportunity to experience student life in a new environment and broaden perspectives on career possibilities.  It is also a wonderful way to develop intercultural skills as well as to enhance critical thinking and personal growth.

As a student at the Schulich School of Music, you have the opportunity to apply for an exchange programs or independent study away at another music conservatory or university. Courses approved on the Learning Agreement will be credited towards your program.

Below are guidelines to embark on an educational opportunity outside of McGill in Canada.

Exchange Info Session, December 6, 2023

Info session recording - December 6, 2023
Presentation Slides: PDF icon Music Exchange Info Session - December 6

Exchange Program

Students enrolled in a Bachelor of Music program are eligible to apply for exchange programs. Students have the choice to visit one of the music academies listed below, or to take mostly electives in other universities that are also McGill’s official exchange partners. These universities are labelled in McGill Abroad as exchange programs open to all faculties.

Credits earned from courses taken in an exchange program are all transferrable to a Bachelor of Music program with a learning agreement. Students can still graduate from their program within their desired time frame by participating in an exchange program.

As an exchange student, you will pay tuition fees directly to McGill during your term abroad, and not to the host school. Students are billed an equivalent of 15 McGill credits for one semester regardless of the number of credits you plan to take at the host school. Europe usually follows the ECTS system. Two ECTS credits are equivalent to one McGill credit. In other words, you are allowed to take up to 30 ECTS credits if you attend one semester of exchange, or up to 60 ECTS credits for the entire academic year.

Key exchange partners

Eligibility

  • Students must be currently registered in a full-time degree program.
  • Minimum CGPA of 3.0.
  • Students should be entering U2 or U3 in their bachelor program.
  • Students should preferably have completed the required theory and musicianship courses in their bachelor program at McGill before going on exchange.

Application

Application Period: December 5, 2023 – January 15, 2024

  • We are currently accepting exchange applications for Fall 2024, or for the full year [Fall 2024 & Winter 2025].
  • We highly recommend students to participate in a full-year exchange to take advantage of a bigger variety of course options at the host school.
  • McGill offers a Mobility Bursary Program to help defray some costs associated with exchange programs. All students who have been approved for an exchange term abroad can apply for this bursary.
  • If you are applying for a full-year exchange, you must fill out a webform in addition to the exchange application on Minerva. On the Minerva exchange application form, you will select FALL as the exchange term and indicate in the comments section on the MINERVA application form that you would like to do a full-year exchange.
  • Applicants must include a list of courses they wish to take at the host university on the exchange application form.
  • If you are selecting one of the music exchange partners listed above, you will also be required to provide a 10-minute video-taped audition to be submitted at the same time you complete the Minerva exchange application form. The taped audition must be recorded within the last three months and be emailed to studentaffairs.music [at] mcgill.ca with the subject line: Exchange Application.
  • You may list up to four host schools on the Minerva exchange application form. Listing only one host school does not increase your chance of being nominated for exchange.

Interested in learning more about Exchange programs or READY TO APPLY?

Follow the 7 Steps to Going on Exchange.

Students who have been nominated for an exchange will receive an invitation from a Program Advisor to talk about the next steps to formalize the exchange program with the host school.

Independent Study Away

Aside from exchange programs, Bachelor of Music (BMus) students may also request to take courses from a university which does not have an official exchange agreement with McGill. This is known as an Independent Study Away (ISA). Students apply and pay tuition fees directly to the host university with ISA.

ISA is a popular option for students who plan on earning credits towards their degree by taking courses at another university outside of Quebec during the summer.

Students must obtain permission from the faculty before doing an ISA by submitting an ISA application form.

Eligibility

  • Students must be currently registered in a full-time degree program.
  • Minimum CGPA of 2.7.
  • Students should be entering U2 or U3 in their bachelor program.
  • Students should preferably have completed the required theory and musicianship courses in their bachelor program at McGill before requesting an ISA.

Application

Semester Application Period
Winter 2024 October 1 to December 15, 2023
Summer 2024 December 5, 2023 to April 1, 2024
Fall 2024 or full year application [Fall 2024 & Winter 2025] December 5, 2023 to June 15, 2024
  • Submit an ISA application on Minerva within the application dates listed above.
  • To apply, go to MINERVA > Student Menu > Student Records Menu > Exchange/Study Away Menu > Request for Study Away
  • If you plan on taking practical instruction at the host university, you will also be required to provide a 10-minute video-taped audition to be submitted at the same time you complete the Minerva Study Away application form. The taped audition must be recorded within the last three months and be emailed to studentaffairs.music [at] mcgill.ca with the subject line: ISA Application.
  • Applicants must include a list of courses they wish to take at the host university on the Study Away application form.

Students whose ISA application has been approved will receive an invitation from a Program Advisor to talk about transfer credits.

Quebec Inter-University Transfer (IUT)

Quebec Inter-University Transfer (IUT) Agreement allows you to register at another educational institution in the province of Quebec in addition to your registration at McGill.  With your faculty's permission, you may register at any Quebec university for three or in some cases six credits per term depending on degree residency regulations. 

Tuition is paid directly to McGill.  The host institution will automatically submit your grades to McGill for any completed courses.

IUT Checklist:

  1. Visit McGill's IUT website (Inter-University Transfer) to submit an application for "authorization to transfer credits". 
  2. Once this application is approved by both the home and host universities, you must register for the course that was approved at the host university.
  3. You must adhere to the registration deadlines of the host university.
  4. You must also ensure that the McGill Class Schedule permits you to take these courses without conflict.
  5. If you decide to drop or withdraw from the approved course(s), you will need to drop or withdraw from the course using the host university's registration method and submit this change on the online IUT application.

Internship

An Internship is a great opportunity to build connections.  It is also a wonderful chance to apply the skills you are developing in the Schulich School of Music in a professional setting.

To be eligible to participate, you must be an active student, and have completed 30 credits in a 90-credit program, or 45 credits in a 120-credit program, and have a minimum CGPA 3.00. In adherence to the insurance policies, the internship may not be completed in the last semester of studies in the program. You are required to return to McGill in the semester following the end of the internship to continue with your program. It is your responsibility to find a professor within the Schulich School of Music to supervise your internship.

To take advantage of a Music internship, an internship proposal form must be submitted to the Student Affairs Office before the following deadlines:

Semester Deadline to submit internship application
Spring/Summer April 30
Fall June 28
Winter November 30

 

Internship Checklist:

  1. Find a full-time Faculty Academic from the Schulich School of Music who can co-supervise the internship with the supervisor from the company which you will work.
  2. Both you and the Faculty Academic are required to complete an internship proposal form (PDF icon Internship Proposal (MUPD 499) form) illustrating the project objectives, learning goals, activities and how this project will contribute to your professional development.
  3. The means of evaluation must be clearly described on the application form (e.g. business plan, log of activities, report on what you learned; research paper, composition or recording, assessment of host organization, or some combination, including the relative weight of each component in the grade).
  4. Submuit the signed proposal with supporting documents to the Student Affairs Office (7th floor, Elizabeth Wirth Music Building) before the assigned deadline.

Enriched Experience Opportunities (EEO) Bursary

The Scholarship and Student Aid Office offers financial support for undergraduate students who partake learning opportunities outside the traditional classroom environment. These activities may involve national or international travel. Visit the EEO website

Testimonial

Samuel Rouleau with friends during his Sibelius Exchange in 2016
Samuel Rouleau with friends during his Sibelius Exchange in 2016

Returned from a yearlong, exchange program at Sibelius Academy in Helsinki, Finland. It was one of the most enriching, eye-opening and exhilarating experiences of my life.
The Academy offers a wide variety of class options including jazz improvisation, creative skills training, and performance coaching. Additional classes taught through the bassoon studio were complemented by invited guests and private lessons with fantastic faculty!
Opportunities to interact with fellow students in different programs taught me many things I would not have had the opportunity to learn elsewhere! The performance opportunities are numerous and intense as were the opportunities to travel. Students willingly work together to create music of all sorts and to experiment with various projects - the possibilities are endless!
Helsinki is a fantastic city. I had an incredible experience and would strongly recommend it to anyone interested in studying abroad!

-Samuel Rouleau, BMus (2016-2017 Exchange at the Sibelius Academy, Finland)

 

Consult the McGill Abroad website for more information on studying abroad options.

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