Latest exam updates

Music Theory exams – March 2021

  • Online Music Theory exams (Grades 1 to 5) – we are cancelling the online exams planned for 16 March. Exams in May and June will go ahead as planned.
  • Paper Music Theory exams (Grades 6 to 8) – we will not be offering these exams in March. The next exams at Grades 6 to 8 will be in June 2021.
  • Grade 5 Music Theory requirement - from 1 January to 30 April 2021 only, candidates can take Grade 6 to 8 Performance or Practical exams without first passing Grade 5 Music Theory. From 1 May 2021, the Grade 5 Music Theory requirement will return with flexibility about timing. If you receive an email asking for your proof of prerequisite, please ignore this. We will still release any results in line with the arrangements outlined here.

For more information click here.

New CEO unveils plans to put candidates first with ‘anytime, anywhere’ exams

2 weeks ago

New CEO unveils plans to put candidates first with ‘anytime, anywhere’ exams

ABRSM’s new Chief Executive has announced plans to extend the organisation’s digital transformation and build the music examination experience around the needs and preferences of candidates as he took up his post.

Former Pro Vice Chancellor of the University of London, Chris Cobb, said he wanted to explore development of exams which candidates could take when, and where, they wanted, and which let them take incremental steps towards completing their grades.

He also plans to extend ABRSM’s international reach, develop new support for music teachers and explore new ways of harnessing the organisation’s partnership with the four Royal schools of Music.

Mr Cobb, a computer scientist, said: “The key for me is for ABRSM to become more candidate centred so we are ready to examine a candidate when the candidate is ready to be examined, rather than when we’re ready to examine them. My mantra will be anytime, anywhere.

“I’d also like to give candidates choices over the mode of their examination (digital or physical) and to provide educational support and incremental steps towards achieving their grade Ultimately, we all want candidates to succeed, we want to inspire their progression and for them to be able to demonstrate their musicality and musicianship in multiple ways.”

Mr Cobb, who took over from Michael Elliott on January 1st, said ABRSM’s greatest strengths included the calibre of staff and power of the 132-year-old brand.

He added: “I can’t begin to describe how proud and privileged I am to be leading ABRSM through the transformation ahead.

“At the heart of it all, will be the music, and you’ll be seeing and hearing an ever richer variety of music from an increasingly diverse community of composers included in our syllabuses and publications as we move forward.”


Read Chris Cobb’s first blog as ABRSM CEO here.

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