The ABRSM Exam is an international music exam given twice a year to students all around the world. This exam has become more and more popular here in Bergen County due to the amount of students now applying to private high schools. We have had over 30 students from BAMA participate in the exams since 2008. Most of our students choose to take the practical exam on the instrument of their choice. All ABRSM Exams are offered Grades 1-8 with 8 being collegiate level.
The practical exam consists of a performance (3 pieces), sight-reading, ear training and scales. For most students, the preparation time for each exam is at least 6 months. This allows both the student and parent to understand what is expected of them and how to increase practicing time to meet the demands of the exam. BAMA personally recommends that any student attempting an ABRSM exam be taking at least a 45 minute private lesson, once a week. For those interested in the theory exam, a written test will be given and the student must pass by answering multiple choice/fill in the blank questions. The themes of this exam are note values, key signatures, scales, finger placement, etc. Books for the theory and practical can be purchased from the ABRSM website and shipped directly.
So, why are ABRSM exams important to BAMA students? It not only helps them focus and achieve important goals; it helps them push themselves and attain high marks for exams that may have once seemed impossible. We find that most students who participate in the ABRSM exam program are on the path to excellence through music and academics. For anyone interested in pursuing music as a career or a focus in high school, we believe the ABRSM exam is a perfect place to start for all Bergen County students!