Graded Exams
  A Definitive Guide to Graded Examinations across the Performing Arts

Repertoire and content

Awarding Organisations generally ensure that the repertoire set for each examination is different from that listed by their competitors. However, some duplication is inevitable for specialisms in which the entirety of the repertoire is limited. The selection of repertoire is rigorously controlled to ensure that it is appropriate for both the level and the allocated mark weighting.

This is usually achieved by convening panels of selectors who work under the supervision of a senior academic with reference to detailed guidelines and previous syllabuses. However, in case of own choice material, Awarding Organisations generally provide comprehensive guidelines and/or exemplar material to assist candidates in making an appropriate selection of repertoire. Since many Awarding Organisations operate globally, special care is taken to include works which are suitable for candidates and teachers from a variety of backgrounds. In some cases, candidates may perform their own works. These must meet the expectations indicated in the syllabus.

The assessment criteria for performances highlight the need for candidates to relate closely to the repertoire they perform. Learning outcomes indicate the progressive depth of understanding demanded and, where available, candidates’ choices from the repertoire lists are guided by the necessity to demonstrate these qualities.

Examiners often carry confidential tests. These are written by specialists, working under the supervision of a senior academic, and are replaced at regular intervals. Detailed guidelines for all unseen tests are given in the syllabuses, and exemplars are usually published for the benefit of teachers and candidates. Where there is a choice between different types of test, their content is carefully controlled to ensure parity of standards between options.