Latest exam updates

Performance Grades: Booking for June Performance Grades is open now until 13 May.

Performance Grade exams

We are now offering Performance Grade exams every month. Please check here for dates and fees. We are extending the introductory 15% discount for these exams so that it applies to all remotely-assessed Performance Grade and ARSM exams in 2021. Just enter code ABPG15SG when you book. Please also read our terms and conditions here.

Performance Grades discount: system error

We currently have an error in our systems relating to discount codes. When you add the code your order summary will show that 15% has been added to the total, not taken away. However, the 15% discount will be applied to your booking and the correct total will appear at the top of the next screen before you pay. We're working to fix this and apologise for any inconvenience caused.

Singapore office

On government advice, we will be following a more flexible and hybrid way of working. Although working from home is still encouraged, from 12 April we will be able to answer a limited number of calls and applicants can contact us via the Local Contact - ABRSM: Local exam contacts. We will continue to update you when further information is published by Ministry of Manpower.

Grade 5 Music Theory waiver (not applicable in the UK & Ireland)

We are extending our Grade 5 Music Theory waiver until 23 May 2021. This means that candidates with a Grade 6 to 8 Performance Grade exam submission date up to and including 23 May can take their exam without first passing Grade 5 Music Theory. We are making this exceptional arrangement to allow candidates who have been unable to take an exam in recent months to progress with their learning. From 24 May, the Grade 5 Music Theory requirement will return. For exam dates/exam submission dates after 23 May, all candidates taking a Grade 6 to 8 Performance or Practical Grade must first pass Grade 5 Music Theory.

Violin, Viola, Cello and Double Bass exams consist of three pieces, scales and arpeggios, sight-reading, and aural tests. Total marks in all individual Practical exams are 150. You need 100 marks to achieve Pass, 120 marks to pass with Merit and 130 marks to pass with Distinction.

Select a grade using the links below to view the syllabus and supporting materials for that grade.

Bowed Strings syllabus 2020–2023, from Initial Grade to Grade 8

Grades: Bowed Strings

Publications and audio

Supporting apps

Cello Practice Partner

Cello Practice Partner lets you play along with real musicians’ performances, exactly as recorded or at a reduced tempo.

Aural Trainer

Aural Trainer features interactive challenges to develop your aural skills and make aural practice more engaging.

Music Case

Music Case is a free practice app that helps you to understand the progress you are making over time, increasing your motivation to keep learning.

Violin Practice Partner

Violin Practice Partner makes practising pieces more musical, rewarding and fun. Play along with the piano accompaniment or violin part in isolation.

Piano Scales Trainer

Piano Scales Trainer helps increase fluency with ABRSM scales and arpeggios requirements.

Music Theory Trainer

Music Theory Trainer helps bring music theory to life with fun and engaging challenges at Grades 1–5.

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