Preparatory Course for the bachelor's degree programme

The Conservatory offers prospective students the means of preparing themselves for entry to the Conservatory through the Preparatory Course. Students in the Preparatory Course take lessons with conservatory teachers. In addition to preparing themselves specifically in respect of the principal subject and acquiring the necessary basic music theory knowledge, students have ample opportunity to obtain performance experience through special concerts organized for these young students.

All candidates must pass an entrance examination to be accepted to the Preparatory Course. The preparatory course does not constitute a degree programme at the higher professional education level (hbo-opleiding), but rather a course. Students enrolled on the preparatory course are therefore not eligible for financial assistance.

Preparatory Course at the conservatory
Not every musician who is ready for the entrance examination has already finished secondary education. And not every musician having finished secondary education and considering a conservatory education has reached the required level. For these students the preliminary training programme constitutes of one or two years of preparatory work on the principal-study subject, theory and ear training ('solfège'), all in combination with school or work.

There are no separate entrance requirements for the principal study; the examining board will assess as to whether students show sufficient potential and development to attain the required level within one or two years. The same applies to theoretical knowledge and ear training. In this case too, the examiners will 'measure' potential and knowledge already acquired. Students who complete the theoretical subjects during the preliminary training programme may - in consultation with the board of  directors - already start attending classes in theoretical subjects at first-year level.

Preparatory Course at the Gerrit van der Veenschool or IVKO
It is possible to combine the preliminary training or the lessons at the Sweelinck Academy with secondary education at the Gerrit van der Veenschool, which is situated in the south of Amsterdam, or the IVKO. The music lessons are partially fitted into the time-table. Because of the amount of time the instrument already takes up at this stage, the pupil can, by means of a national arrangement, be exempted from a number of subjects. For more information please contact Mr Herman Lange at the Gerrit van der Veenschool, tel: 020-6799905, or the Sweelinck Academy co-ordinator.

Preparatory Course for the master's degree programme

Each year, the Conservatorium van Amsterdam gives some fifteen candidates who already hold a Bachelor’s degree in music and are applying for the Master’s programme, but who do not yet fully meet the entrance requirements, the chance to enrol on a year-long preparatory course. The course prepares students for the upcoming Master’s entrance examination a year later. While classes are offered with a view to helping students get accepted to the Master’s programme the following year, absolutely no guarantee can be given as to candidates’ chances of admission.

Please note: it is not possible to apply for this course; students will be selected by the committee on the basis of their Master's entrance exam results.

The course consists of one principal private lesson and coaching per week. By agreement with the academic adviser, students may also be admitted to one or more supporting group lessons (e.g. theory). Classes are offered through a contract education scheme. Please note: contract education does not entitle students to a residence permit.

For more information, please send an e-mail to the study secretariat at