Financial Aid

Need-based aid

At USC, we recognize that many students and their families need assistance in meeting the costs of an outstanding private education. Regardless of a family’s financial circumstances, all domestic applicants are encouraged to apply for university need-based aid.

Specific information on USC’s financial aid program and complete financial aid application instructions can be found at www.usc.edu/financialaid. The USC Financial Aid Office strives to meet each undergraduate student’s full determined need and the process for doing so requires considerable documentation. Please follow all deadlines closely and plan ample time to complete the process. Graduate students are eligible for need-based loan funding through the USC Financial Aid Office, however need-based grants are not available.

Please note: International applicants are not eligible for federal need-based financial aid.

Cost of tuition for the Thornton School of Music programs

Cost of tuition for the Arts Leadership program

Cost of tuition for the Scoring for Motion Pictures and Television program

Merit-based aid

The USC Thornton School of Music awards scholarships to students with outstanding demonstrated talent in the student’s chosen field of study. Presently undergraduate students pursuing degrees in Music Industry, Popular Music Performance, Music Production and Choral Music are not eligible for Thornton scholarship awards. Applicants to all other undergraduate programs, both domestic and international, are considered for scholarships, and awards are given based on the following: [1] a recommendation from the faculty of the student’s department and [2] availability of funding. Approximately one-third of admitted undergraduate students are offered a scholarship ranging from $5,000 to $10,000 per year. In addition, a select number of applicants will be offered scholarships such as the Thornton Faculty Award and USC academic awards (Trustee, Presidential, and Dean’s Scholarships) ranging from one-quarter to full tuition.

Graduate students are eligible for a range of merit-based funding including scholarships, teaching assistantships, and USC fellowships, however, graduate students pursuing Music Education, Scoring for Motion Pictures and Television (SMPTV), and Arts Leadership are not eligible for Thornton scholarship awards.

It must be noted, however, that a faculty recommendation for Thornton School of Music merit aid does not guarantee that a student will be awarded a scholarship. In addition, for undergraduate students receiving need-based aid, the combination of all merit, departmental or outside agency scholarships or loans may not exceed the USC-determined financial need.

Teaching assistantships

For detailed information about our teaching assistantships please click here.

Other possible sources of aid

Students are encouraged to explore other possible sources of financial aid. Two sources of aid in particular that students are encouraged to explore are the USC Town and Gown scholarships, and awards offered by the USC Alumni Association. Information on both of these award possibilities are available online. Terms and eligibility requirements vary considerably for the many types of financial aid that are available.