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17/05/2020

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ABRSM Online Exams COMING THIS SUMMER!! (...and special adapted exams for UCAS University Points)

In the light of the recent covid 19 crisis, the ABRSM have been looking at ways to help students who’ve recently had exams cancelled or were unable to take exams this summer due to the pandemic.


There are two areas in which the ABRSM have recently published proposals to help those who’ve had exams cancelled or were due to take them this summer. The first is the announcement of Online Exams and the second is a special adapted exam especially for those in their final school year who were relying on the UCAS points for University entry and I’ll go over each category one by one.

Regarding Online Exams from August, candidates in the UK will be able to enter for online graded music exams with a focus on performance. To me this implies elements that can be recorded at home and less reliance on the interactive elements such as Aural tests, but we’ll have to wait until next week, for further details of how this will work, so as always check back here, as I will inform you of any updates as soon as possible. 

These exams will be available for all instruments at Grades 1 to 8, as well as ARSM, with repertoire from their current syllabuses. 

Next, there is a specific group of candidates for whom the ABRSM is offering a specially adapted exam this coming June. These are students who are in their final school year about to enter university and who would normally be relying on a Grade 6-8 exam to get UCAS points for entry into that University.

These exams will contain exactly the same elements as usual – three pieces/songs, technical work, sight-reading and aural tests. The ABRSM will assess the pieces and technical work based on a continuous audio recording supplied by the candidate and base marks for the sight-reading and aural tests on an assessment supplied by the teacher, moderated by ABRSM. They will be available for Practical and Music Theory exams at Grades 6 to 8 and also the ARSM exam. For theory exams, candidates will take the exam in their own home and the exam must be invigilated by a responsible adult. 

These adapted exams will be fully accredited by the ABRSM's regulators and will carry the same UCAS points as face-to-face exams. Candidates will receive a certificate in the usual way.

As I said earlier, ABRSM will publish further details in a couple of weeks, and I will let you know of any further information as it comes to light, so make sure you bookmark this page, to stay up to date with this vital information regarding YOUR music exams

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