Types of exams


Music exams

Australian Music Examinations Board (AMEB) Qld offers graded practical and written examinations in Music. The AMEB Syllabus is one of the most widely used Music curricula in Australia.

Assessing students from Preliminary to Diploma levels (and from P Plate Piano to Diploma level for piano), candidates can enrol in exams on a vast array instruments from the following families:

  • Keyboard—including piano, organ and accordion
  • Strings—including violin, viola, cello, double bass, classical guitar and harp
  • Woodwind—including recorder, flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon and saxophone
  • Orchestral Brass—including horn, trumpet, trombone, bass trombone, tuba and euphonium
  • Percussion
  • Band—including Concert Band and Brass Band—Bb, Eb and C instruments
  • Voice—including singing and musical theatre.

Candidates can also undertake ensemble performance examinations, available for string, woodwind, brass, percussion or other mixed ensembles.

AMEB Qld offers Theory examinations in Music Craft, Theory of Music and Musicianship as well.

The 2020 AMEB Manual of Syllabuses for all music syllabuses, and the Speech and Drama Syllabuses will be your complete guide to taking AMEB practical or written exams in music, speech or drama in 2020.

The detailed collection of music syllabuses outlines the requirements for taking exams at all grade and diploma levels including the syllabus objectives, repertoire options, technical work and additional requirements.

The 2020 AMEB Manual of Syllabuses are available to purchase in-store from our State Office in Ashgrove or through our shop.

Comprehensive examinations

Since 2019, the traditional exam that will be familiar to most teachers and candidates will become known as the 'comprehensive' exam.

A comprehensive exam consists of technical work, studies and pieces and, depending on the level and syllabus requirements, aural tests, sight-reading and general knowledge.

Within the new Piano Syllabus (only), candidates can undertake a comprehensive 'collaborative' examination. The collaborative option allows candidates to demonstrate ensemble skills by presenting works with an associate artist as part of the repertoire requirements for the grade. Please refer to the full 2020 Manual of Syllabuses for more information and full syllabus requirements.

For leisure examinations

AMEB's 'For leisure' syllabuses—available in piano, saxophone and singing—cater to a variety of musical tastes and interests.

These syllabuses are designed for all ages and explore popular repertoire including well-loved standards from the classics, jazz standards, arrangements of movie themes, popular songs and concert arrangements. The singing for leisure syllabus includes folk songs, songs from musical theatre and film, and popular contemporary songs.

The for leisure syllabuses differ from the comprehensive syllabuses in the technical work requirements, and candidates are given the choice between aural tests and sight reading. Further, no additional Theory of Music, Musicianship or Music Craft examination is required to pass any grade or the Certificate of Performance.

Please refer to the full 2020 Manual of Syllabuses for more information and full syllabus requirements.

Repertoire examinations

AMEB is now offering repertoire examinations for all syllabuses excluding for leisure, band, ensemble performance and contemporary popular music (CPM).

In repertoire exams, only pieces are heard:

  • 4 pieces (3 list and 1 own choice) for Level 1 examinations
  • 5 pieces (3 list and 2 own choice) for Level 2 examinations.

While technical work is still important and relevant for exam preparation, repertoire exams allow candidates to focus on their technique through repertoire and have the flexibility to choose a range of repertoire styles, including own choice works.

Similar to comprehensive exams, repertoire exam candidates must still achieve a pass grade in particular grades of musicianship, theory of music or music craft (or equivalents) in order to complete the requirements for practical examinations at Grade 6, 7 and 8 to receive their certificate.

Please refer to the full 2020 Manual of Syllabuses for more information and full syllabus requirements.

Ensemble Performance examinations

The Ensemble Performance Syllabuses enable ensembles to be examined and focus on works for instruments in the specified family; however, works presented under each subject may include other instruments, for example, Piano, Guitar, Harp and Percussion.

Similar to other syllabuses, these syllabuses are broken down into 3 levels of Grades 1–Diploma.

Please refer to the full 2020 Manual of Syllabuses for more information and full syllabus requirements.

Last updated 28 July 2020