Our online service will be unavailable on Monday 21 September and Tuesday 22 September while we make some important updates. We will provide a new message here once the service is available again.

Latest exam updates

Change to online Music Theory exam date – 12 December 2020

We are delaying our first online Music Theory exams for Grades 1 to 5 in Singapore. These exams will now take place on 12 December 2020 (not 7 November as published previously). The new booking period for these exams will be: 26 October to 9 November.  We are delaying these exams to ensure we offer the best exam experience for candidates. The later exam date will also give candidates more time to prepare and familiarise themselves with the new exam questions. Find out more about online Music Theory.

Practical Session 3 update

We are working hard on solutions to ensure learners can gain their qualifications at the earliest opportunity. However, on the basis of official and local advice we will be cancelling Session 3 Practical exams scheduled for  26 August – 30 September. Our Representatives will provide further guidance in due course. We are very sorry for the impact on teachers and candidates and we will continue to monitor the situation. Thank you for your loyalty and support while these restrictions remain in place.

We will be gradually rolling out remotely-assessed Performance Grades internationally starting before the end of 2020 and will share exam dates and booking periods soon.

Singapore office closure and update on Practical session 1 results

On government advice, we will continue to work from home during Phase 2 and possibly into Phase 3. We will therefore be unable to answer telephone calls during this time. If you need to contact us please email [email protected]

Unfortunately, hard copy results for Practical Session 1 exams, specifically 16-19 March, will be delayed due to the office closure. We are sorry for the delay and will send these out as soon as we have access to the office.



ARSM考綱為師生提供備考 ARSM時所需的重要信息。








  • 倫敦聖三一學院
  • 倫敦音樂學院
  • Guildhall音樂及戲劇學院
  • 愛爾蘭皇家音樂學院
  • 都柏林理工學院音樂及戲劇學院
  • 澳大利亞音樂考試委員會
  • 南非大學



  • 我們僅接受古典音樂演奏/演唱資格證書。
  • 我們僅接受以上列出的資格證書;不接受其他相同或更高級別的資格證書或履歷。
  • 出具上述任一資格的考生無需提供樂理資格證書。





  • 鋼琴 – 古鍵琴 – 管風琴
  • 小提琴 – 中提琴
  • 高音薩克管 - 中音薩克管 - 次中音薩克管 - 上低音薩克管
  • 小號 - 短號(B♭調短號或E♭調高音短號) - 柔音小號
  • 長號 – 低音長號
  • 上低音號 – 中音號 – 大號













There is no specific requirement to perform from memory. However, candidates are encouraged to do so if they consider it will enhance their performance.

We advise singers to perform their programme from memory, with the exception of oratorio/sacred items and complex contemporary scores.

Please note that:

  • No additional marks are directly awarded for performing from memory.
  • A copy of the music should be available for the examiner to refer to (before or after the performance of the programme) if necessary. This may be the accompanist’s copy.

To hear what our Chief Examiner has to say about performing from memory in your ARSM exam, watch this video.

Performances should be accompanied where appropriate and candidates should provide their own piano accompanist. The candidate’s teacher may act as accompanist. Pre-recorded accompaniments are not allowed and the examiner cannot act as the accompanist.

Candidates and accompanists may bring a page-turner to assist with awkward page-turns; prior permission is not needed. Examiners are not able to help with page-turning.


Examiners may ask to look at the music before or after the performance of the whole programme. A separate copy of the music is not needed – examiners can use the candidate’s or accompanist’s copy.

Candidates who are performing from memory must also bring copies of their music.

Performing from unauthorized photocopies (or other kinds of copies) of copyright editions is not allowed. ABRSM may withhold the exam result where we have evidence of an illegal copy being used.

In the UK, copies may be used in certain limited circumstances – for full details, see the MPA’s Code of Fair Practice at www.mpaonline.org.uk. In all other cases, application should be made to the copyright holder before any copy is made, and evidence of permission received should be brought to the exam.

Our exams are normally conducted in English.

As there are no tests in ARSM which require a candidate to respond to questions from the examiner, an interpreter is unlikely to be needed. However, a candidate who is not comfortable using English may be allowed to bring an independent person into the exam room as interpreter. Please refer to our exam regulations for more information.












This ARSM syllabus is valid from January 2017 until further notice.

We will post any minor updates at www.abrsm.org/syllabuscorrections. Advance notice of a revised syllabus containing significant changes will be provided on our main ARSM page.

Every candidate will get a mark form with feedback and marks. Successful candidates receive a certificate and can add letters (ARSM) after their name.

Exam music should be available from music retailers worldwide as well as online.

ARSM repertoire lists are the same as the existing lists for the DipABRSM (Music Performance) diploma. We have made every effort to ensure that the publications listed remain available for the duration of both syllabuses.

We advise candidates to buy their music well in advance of the exam in case of any delays with items temporarily out of print or not kept in stock by retailers.

Apart from queries relating to exams, all enquiries about the music (e.g. editorial, availability) should be addressed to the relevant publisher. Contact details are listed at www.abrsm.org/publishers.

The prerequisite for entry to DipABRSM is an ABRSM Grade 8 (which includes having passed Grade 5 Music Theory). ARSM will be accepted as a substitute to this prerequisite as long as you can show that you have also passed ABRSM Grade 5 Theory. Some alternative qualifications and experience will also be accepted.

To find out how ARSM helps to prepare you for DipABRSM, watch this video.

No, ARSM and DipABRSM (Music Performance) are separate diplomas. Anyone who wishes to obtain a DipABRSM needs to take the exam in full.


The DipABRSM and LRSM diplomas in Music Performance are more wide-ranging qualifications than ARSM as skills and knowledge beyond the performance itself are assessed. You need to demonstrate that you already have a strong foundation in all these areas before you can enter for LRSM. As such, you can only take LRSM (Music Performance) if you have passed DipABRSM (Music Performance). Some alternative qualifications and experience will also be accepted.

(*Advanced Certificate is no longer valid, this exam was withdrawn in 2001.)

Yes, these two exams do differ. The Advanced Certificate assessed a 30-40 minute performance, as well as Quick Study, Viva and Musicianship Tests. ARSM is a performance-only diploma, where candidates present a 30-minute programme.

ABRSM graded music examinations and diplomas are regulated in England by the Office of the Qualifications and Examinations Regulation (Ofqual) and the corresponding regulatory authorities in Wales (Qualifications Wales) and Northern Ireland (the Council for the Curriculum, Examinations and Assessment - CCEA). They are part of the Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF) in England.

The ARSM has been placed at Level 4 in the RQF, and appears in the register that can be viewed at register.ofqual.gov.uk as the ABRSM Level 4 Diploma in Music Performance (ARSM).

As part of its regulatory processes, ABRSM has assigned Guided Learning Hours (GLH) and Total Qualification Time (TQT) to the ARSM. These are figures designed to give an idea of the volume of work, expressed in number of hours, which could reasonably be required in order for a candidate to achieve the qualification.

Guided Learning Hours express the number of hours of direct supervision, e.g. lessons with a tutor, that a candidate is likely to need in preparation for a qualification. The Total Qualification Time encompasses Guided Learning Hours plus an estimate of the total number of hours of other preparation, e.g. personal practice, likely to be required.

For the ARSM, the figures are as follows:

Guided Learning Hours (GLH)

Total Qualification Time (TQT)



For further information on ABRSM’s accreditation and regulation, see www.abrsm.org/regulation.

The exams will not be recorded routinely but will be subject to the full range of quality assurance processes we always apply. These include moderating examiners regularly, analysis of mark form comments and results, recording of marks for statistical checks, an appeals process, ongoing annual CPD and occasional recordings for specific purposes.

DipABRSM is a more wide-ranging qualification than ARSM, requiring the demonstration of skills and knowledge beyond the performance itself. The two diplomas will both be accredited exams placed at Level 4 in the Regulated Qualification Framework with Ofqual. Level 4 covers a broad range of regulated qualifications across many different disciplines, including Music diplomas, and within this range of qualifications different degrees of content, depth and breadth are required. ARSM will sit lower in Level 4 than DipABRSM due to its focus on performance alone.


If your ARSM query is not answered above, please contact our Syllabus department.

Syllabus department

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. By using our website, you are agreeing to our cookie policy and consent to our use of cookies. Find out more.

Close this message