ABRSM Piano and Theory Exams

ABRSM (Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music) is a globally-recognised English Music Examination Board. Students working towards an ABRSM exam further develop their skills, knowledge, understanding and appreciation of music.

The Radiant Spectrum teachers are qualified and experienced in teaching Graded ABRSM Practical Piano and Theory exams. If you are interested in sitting for ABRSM exams with us, our educators will assess your child’s suitability during the trial assessment and/or music lessons.

Our Approach to ABRSM Exams

The Radiant Spectrum adopts a 3-pronged approach to teaching ABRSM Graded Exams:

1. Scaffolding Music Theory and Practical Exams The ABRSM syllabus will be broken down and reconstructed in a way that is easily accessible for our special needs students, regardless of their starting points or conditions. Concepts will be taught step-by-step, progressively, thereby allowing skills to be built in a gradual and manageable way. There will be regular reinforcement and practice, so learning becomes a successful experience from the beginning.

2. Errorless Teaching (through explicit instructions) – Students with autism and different learning needs greatly benefit from being taught in explicit steps which omit chances of error. This is done via a 3-step process: modelling, guided practice, and independent practice. Students will be assisted as they learn new concepts and prompts are faded gradually, allowing for errorless teaching and skills to be built successfully.

3. Predictable Routines and Autism-Friendly Supports – Visual and communication supports, physical structure, sensory and motor skill accommodations, and positive behaviour supports are provided in the music classroom. Classroom schedules and routines are clear, specific, and well-planned. In every lesson, we aim to be consistent and predictable, so as to manage our students’ expectations and reduce any anxiety. We seek to understand all students as the person they are, the environment they learn best in, and the instructional style they are most receptive to. Accommodations and adjustments occur regularly to meet the students at their comfortable learning level.

ABRSM Practical Piano Exams

Practical Grade Piano exams consist of 4 sections: three pieces, scales and arpeggiossight-reading, and aural tests.

Exams are available at nine levels of assessment: Initial Grade and Grades 1 to 8. (A pass in ABRM’s Grade 5 Theory Examination is necessary before taking Practical Grades 6 – 8).

Andrew achieved Distinction for ABRSM Piano Grade 1

ABRSM Theory Exams

ABRSM Theory Exams assess a candidate’s knowledge and understanding of the way music works and is created. Developing this knowledge and understanding helps musicians at all levels to perform with greater sensitivity, awareness and control.

Exams are available at eight levels (Grades 1 – 8).

  • Grades 1 – 5 cover the basics of rhythm, notes and instruments.
  • Grades 6 – 8 cover harmony and counterpoint, composition and a broad knowledge of western music.
Ethan doing a mock theory exam, in preparation for his online theory exam

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