Music Exams

Practical exams

Unfortunately we are not able to host exams at the moment. We will also be unable to book children in for London centre exams.

You can still enter your child for an exam by visiting the ABRSM website

Theory exams

Theory exams for grade 1 to 5 now take place online. Grade 6 to 8 take place at a London centre. You can enter your child for a theory exam through the ABRSM website

What are music grades?

We can prepare pupils for Associated Board practical exams. These are available in most instruments and voice. The Associated Board also offer theory of music exams.

Exams provide a progressive system of assessments. They start with the Prep Test. This is a gentle introduction where the examiner gives encouraging feedback. There is no pass or fail.

Grades 1 - 8 need 100 marks out of 150 to pass. Pupils can study in their own time and at their own pace. There is no need to take every grade. Many pupils skip a level.

The exams are recognised as international benchmarks. Grades 6 and above carry UCAS points.

To enter at grade 6 and above, pupils need to have passed grade 5 theory.

Exams don't suit all pupils, but, for some they provide clear goals and are good for motivation.

What happens in the exam?

In the exam pupils will need to -

  • Play three prepared pieces of music
  • Play scales they have learnt
  • Play a short piece of music they have not seen before
  • Take a short listening test

Most pupils will need an accompanist. This is someone to play the piano in the exam. Camden Music Service can arrange this for you.

Pupils playing the piano or guitar will not need an accompanist.