The Australian Music Examination Board is a national organisation that provides assessment and syllabi for music students. Their exams are straightforward and can be taken in person or online. They provide a huge level of structure, as well as textbooks, sheet music and formal qualifications. Their courses have 8 grades that correspond to your skill level, not your age. We teach the following AMEB courses:
- Singing for Leisure
- Theory of Music
- Music Craft
The main Singing syllabus follows a traditionally classical bent, with repertoire comprising of a majority of classical pieces and the occasional music theatre or jazz standard. Repertoire for the exam is selected from a list provided by AMEB.
In addition to repertoire, the Singing practical exams also include technical work, studies, aural tests, sight reading and general knowledge. Grade Six and above also require the completion of one of the three theory exams, details of which are below.
Both the traditional Singing course and Singing for Leisure are divided into 3 Levels- Level one contains Preliminary to Fourth Grade content, Level two contains Fifth to Eighth Grade content, Level 3 contains the certificate of performance and/or Associate- Licentiate diplomas.
Singing for Leisure
The Singing for Leisure course is focussed more on contemporary repertoire, with far more diversity and range. These exams also have a technical and an aural component.
Both the traditional Singing course and Singing for Leisure are divided into 3 Levels- Level one contains Preliminary to Fourth Grade content, Level two contains Fifth to Eighth Grade content, Level 3 contains the certificate of performance.
Theory of Music
The Theory of Music exam is available from first grade to sixth grade, as well as associate and licentiate diplomas. There are a number of free practice exams available from the AMEB website, and grades one, two, and three exams can be completed online.
Theory of Music typically covers keys and scales, intervals, chords, time and rhythm, transposition, terms and signs and rhythmic invention. As Theory progresses to tends to focus on more creative aspects, such as harmonisation and melody writing.
The Musicianship exams are quite similar to the Theory of Music exams, except that all exams from fourth grade also require an aural component in addition to the written component. Musicianship exams for grades one and two can be completed online.
Musicianship typically covers keys and scales, intervals, chords, time and rhythm, transposition, terms and signs and rhythmic invention. As Musicianship progresses it tends to focus more on aural recognition of scales, intervals, chords and cadences.
The Music Craft exams are designed to provide an alternate way of learning music theory. Music Craft has only four grades, with only three and four not being online exams.
Music Craft exams have an aural component throughout the syllabus, and use the Hermholtz system. It includes terms in French and German, uses a mixture of figured bass and Roman numerals to describe harmonies, and alternate cadence titles.
Organising a Lesson
The first lesson with Ellen McCarthy Music is always free! This is so we can establish where you’re at and what you need to work on. We’ll also go over how many lessons you require and your timetable. After that, all practical AMEB Exam Lessons are $40 a session, and theoretical AMEB Exam Lessons are $50 a session.
About My Music Exam Preparation Lessons
What Our Students Say
Ellen is a talented singer and a lovely teacher, she can explain basic music theory to complete beginners, like me, and I feel like we can work together on my singing goals.
She helped me identify my strengths and weaknesses, and chooses pieces which are suited to my voice, while still being challenging. I always enjoy our lessons and I can see how much I've progressed already.
I love learning with Ellen. She has a fantastic mix of practical and theoretical knowledge and experience, as well as an easy going attitude that makes lessons a fantastic experience.