Entry Requirements

Applying for the Advanced Diploma in Music Production and Sound Engineering

If you have a passion for music, how it’s produced, and meet the entry requirements listed below then we want to hear from you! We encourage applications from a wide range of backgrounds and levels of experience. 

The application process is your opportunity to demonstrate that you meet the entry requirements necessary to study on the course. So that we can assess your suitability for the course and offer you an interview you will need to submit the following:

  • A Music Portfolio (4 productions in which you demonstrate different roles, such as performer, producer, engineer, writer etc). Please label the portfolio or submit further documentation to explain your role in each production. The tracks need to be submitted in MP3 format in order to be accepted. We do not expect to receive high-quality productions but are simply looking for evidence that you have been attempting to create and produce music for a period of time.
  • Your highest level/most recent academic qualifications. 
  • Music qualifications – we require applicants to have an understanding of the fundamentals of music theory. If you are new to music theory we recommend you attend our 2-day Music Theory Fundamental for Producers course and/or study online for your ABRSM grade-1 music theory qualification. If you don’t have a formal music qualification please state your level of music knowledge and experience in your cover letter.
  • A cover letter. This is where you can explain your motivation to study, career goals and provide further explanation of your background (recordings, composing, performances etc). You should also explain your musical abilities, eg. which instrument (s) you play, what music theory experience you have and give an indication of your level.
  • Your Curriculum Vitae (CV) – allowances will be made for applicants with relating “real-world” experience.
  • Copy of photographic ID, this is usually a scan of your passport or ID card from your home country. For passports please provide a scan of the front cover and photo page. The minimum age requirement to take a course at Abbey Road Institute in London is 18.
  • £450 registration fee (to make the payment go to Abbey Road Institute Bank Details).
  • From 1st January 2021 onwards you will either need to be a UK passport holder or a European citizen living in the UK and registered for the EU settlement scheme (more details below)

(All documentation for your application needs to be submitted in PDF format and song files must be in MP3 format).

Information for European and International applicants after Brexit (from 1st January 2021 onwards)

The guidance below is for European and International (from outside of Europe) applicants who want to study at Abbey Road Institute London. From the 1st of January 2021 if you are from Europe and are applying to study in the UK you will need to apply for a visa unless you are already living in the UK and have registered with the EU Settlement Scheme. The guidance below will help you understand what your options are based on your personal circumstances.

I am a European citizen (have a European passport) and I’m already living in the UK. Can I apply for the Advanced Diploma in Music Production and Sound Engineering in 2022?

If you were living in the UK before the 31st of December 2020 and have registered on the EU settlement scheme you can apply to join our one-year Advanced Diploma in Music Production and Sound Engineering. You do not need a visa but you will need to send us your immigration status ‘share code’ when you make your application.

I am a European citizen living outside of the UK. Can I apply for the Advanced Diploma in Music Production and Sound Engineering?

If you are a European citizen living outside of the UK you will need a Visa to join our one-year Advanced Diploma in Music Production and Sound Engineering. We don’t currently hold a license to sponsor Tier 4 Visas for students from outside of the UK, but we are busy working on this and hope to secure a license towards the end of 2022 so you can study with us in the future. As soon as we have our license in place we will update you here on our website, via email and newsletter and on our social media channels. Once the license is in place we will be able to support you with your Visa application.

I am an international applicant (from outside of Europe). What do the changes mean for me, can I now study at Abbey Road Institute London?

Due to current UK government Visa guidelines, most International students are not yet able to study at Abbey Road Institute London, but you will in the future. We don’t currently hold a license to sponsor Tier 4 Visas for students from outside of the UK, but we are busy working on this and hope to secure a license towards the end of 2022 so you can study with us in the future. As soon as we have our license in place we will update you here on our website, via email and newsletter and on our social media channels. Once the license is in place we will be able to support you with your Visa application.

Youth Mobility Scheme for International Applicants (Tier 5)

In some circumstances, you may be eligible for a Tier 5 “Youth Mobility Visa”.

You can apply for this visa if you’re aged between 18 – 30 and from the following countries: Australia, Canada, Monaco, New Zealand, San Marino and Iceland.

You must be selected in the Youth Mobility Scheme ballot before you can apply for your visa if you’re from the following countries: Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea and Taiwan

For further information on eligibility and how to apply, please visit the Youth Mobility Scheme visa (Tier 5) page on the UK government website.

Are there other courses that I can study at Abbey Road Institute London without a Tier 4 Visa?

We have a number of short courses and masterclasses that you may be eligible to join. We offer a 5 month long, part-time Advanced Diploma in Audio Post Production for Film and TV which starts each year in November. You can find out all about the course here on our website.  If you are applying from outside the UK you may need to secure a Standard Visitor Visa (SVV) to join this course. Find out more about the (SVV) here. We also offer a 4-day Song Production Masterclass, where you’ll spend 2 days at Abbey Road Studios and 2 days at Angel Studios learning about the full recording process under the guidance of Hans-Martin Buff, who was previously Prince’s in-house engineer at Paisley Park. And lastly, we offer a 2-day Music Theory Fundamentals for Producers which is popular with students applying to the Advanced Diploma and needed to brush up on their music theory knowledge.

Graduate Visa

A Graduate Visa gives you permission to stay in the UK for at least 2 years after successfully completing a degree in the UK. If you have already been studying in the UK you may be eligible to apply for a Graduate Visa to study with us. You will need to meet the requirements below and also check that the course you have been studying is eligible on the UK Government website. You can apply for the Graduate Visa if the following apply to you:

  • You are in the UK
  • Your current visa is a Student Visa or Tier 4 (General) Student Visa
  • You studied a UK bachelor’s degree, postgraduate degree or another eligible course for a minimum period of time with your Student Visa or Tier 4 (General) Student Visa
  • You have successfully completed that course

Please visit the UK Government website for detailed information on the Graduate Visa, to check your eligibility and for guidance on how to apply.

Any Questions?
If you’d like to apply but are unsure if you meet the requirements please get in touch for an initial consultation with one of our course advisers. You may also wish to consider attending one of our forthcoming Open Days where you will be able to meet the team and find out how Abbey Road Institute can help you to build a rewarding career working with sound.

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The curriculum is fantastic, extremely comprehensive, contemporary and relevant to today’s industry.

Andrea Mastroiacovo, Graduate 2018

Applying for the diploma was the best thing I could have done for my career. I'm really amazed at how much I learnt in one year.

Lizzie Arnold, Graduate 2019

There is some real visionary foresight in Abbey Road Institute being established to preserve the cultural legacy of Abbey Road.

Youth (Paul McCartney, The Verve, Killing Joke)

I had an incredible experience. The staff have so much to offer and cover so many different areas of music.

Luke Glazewski, Graduate 2019

The course taught me what it means to be a producer and engineer in the industry, I learned things I couldn’t have learned anywhere else.

Marta Di Nozzi, Graduate 2019

It’s a unique experience in so many ways, the location, the calibre of guest lecturers and access to Abbey Road Studios for classes is pretty amazing. There aren't many places you get to record a full orchestra!

Jason O’Bryan, Lecturer

Come with an open mind and a voracious appetite to soak up the magic! Be prepared to work hard - you’ll get out what you put in.

Ian Ramage, Lecturer