Update from the General Manager (4 May 2020)

Additional support for teaching and learning in 2020

AMEB has adapted its services to offer greater support for online teaching and learning; and AMEB Victoria is now offering a variety of ways for students to present for examinations and performance evaluations – including video, online and face-to-face assessments, when circumstances permit.

Traditional face-to-face practical exams
Our first concern is for health and safety. AMEB face-to-face exams will again be offered when it is safe to do so, following consultation with teachers, private enrollers and examiners. Whilst we will accept enrolments for various sessions, we will monitor Victoria’s physical distancing rules and before scheduling any face-to-face exam we will consult with enrollers to understand their preferences. Options might include:

1. continuing with face-to-face examinations at their school, teaching studio, or at our Hawthorn studios when circumstances permit;
2. transferring the enrolment to a later face-to-face exam session; or
3. transferring to a Repertoire examination by video.

We appreciate the uncertainty regarding the possibility of presenting for face-to-face exams at a future date, however enrolments can be made with confidence, on the understanding that there will be no charge for transfers; and full refunds will be given, on request.

2nd Metropolitan Practical Session
Enrolments for the First Metropolitan Practical session (28 April – 17 May) have been merged with enrolments for the Second Metropolitan Practical session (18 May – 5 June).  Enrollers have been contacted and, whilst many have elected to transfer to a video Repertoire exam, a large proportion have decided to wait until it is possible to once again present for an exam in person.

3rd Metropolitan, 1st Regional, 1st Special Subjects and 1st Rockschool Practical Sessions
A school or private studio with examining time of 3 hours or more in a particular instrument may apply to host face-to-face examinations in the abovementioned sessions. Please enquire by email and we will contact you to discuss the possibilities.

Opening Practical Sessions to face-to-face exam enrolments will be reviewed from time to time, following Victorian Government announcements.

Additional Metropolitan July Exam Session
For candidates who might be waiting for face-to-face Practical exams to resume, we will offer an additional session: Series 6 – “July Metropolitan Session”. Exams will be offered at the AMEB Studios in Hawthorn from 20 July till 7 August, and at schools and private studios where the hosting requirements can be met. Naturally, the physical distancing rules at the time will apply. Enrolments on AMEB Connect are now open.

Certificate of Performance and Associate exams
We have contacted enrollers for Certificate of Performance and Associate exams and offered the possibility of presenting for an examination in two parts: repertoire performance by video submission; and an online General Knowledge interview. Particular requirements for instrument, space, and recording quality must be met. At present, Certificate and Associate exams by video can be offered on a trial basis, only to candidates who had enrolled earlier this year.

1st Licentiate Session
A number of enrolments for the 1st Licentiate Practical Session (25 – 27 June) have been received. We hope that the physical distancing rules will permit face-to-face examinations by that time. However, if it is not possible to conduct exams in late-June, we will schedule the exams as soon as practicable thereafter. Enrolments for the 1st Licentiate Session have re-opened and we will contact enrollers to discuss timetabling possibilities before scheduling any exam.

Repertoire exams by video
AMEB Victoria is now offering Repertoire exams by video. The examination requirements will be the same as the face-to-face Repertoire exam described in the 2020 Manual of Syllabuses.

In 2020, Repertoire grade exams are also available to students of Piano for Leisure, Singing for Leisure, Saxophone for Leisure and P Plate Piano, by video or face-to-face (circumstances permitting).

In 2020, because of the physical distancing restrictions, pre-recorded accompaniments may be used for Video Repertoire examinations up to Grade 8, where required, subject to certain restrictions. Further, when performing in examination with an official AMEB recorded accompaniment using an app that slows down or speeds up tempo without affecting pitch, the candidate may choose a tempo commensurate with their ability and interpretative judgement in demonstrating the technical, musical and artistic objectives for the level (that is, the candidate is not restricted to the tempo on the CD version of the official recordings).

AMEB video Repertoire exams are open for enrolment on AMEB Connect (Select Series 60 – Video Repertoire Exams,) and the video submission form may be found on the AMEB Victoria website.

Rockschool Performance Certificates (Premiere to Grade 8) and Rockschool Graded Certificates (Debut to Grade 5) are also available via video submission (enrolments are now open on AMEB Connect).

VCE Performance Evaluations
AMEB Victoria is pleased to offer a complimentary Performance Evaluation by video to each VCE Unit 4 Music Performance student as part of our 2020 Student Support Program. Read more.

Performance Evaluations are useful for developing musicians whose study programs do not align with the requirements of AMEB Practical Exams, as the content of the evaluation is established by the teacher and customised to the needs of the individual student. Performance Evaluations are available to students of any skill level – by video submission or face-to-face assessment in a published Practical exam session, circumstances permitting (modest fees are payable). Evaluations by video submission are open for enrolment on AMEB Connect (Select Series 50 – Video Performance Evaluations).

The requirements for video Repertoire examinations in Contemporary Popular Music are being refined and will be announced soon.

Speech & Drama
Speech and Drama practical exams by video are under development. Speech and Performance Theory Grade 7 is now available online.

Other services
AMEB publications and other support materials continue to be available for purchase on AMEB Connect at discounted prices for AMEB Victoria customers. Orders are being promptly despatched from our distributor’s warehouse in Melbourne.

AMEB Theory examinations continue to be available on-line. (Enrolments can be made on AMEB Connect and AMEB Victoria clients are able to purchase AMEB theory books and analytical notes at special prices.)

Contacting us
All administrative personnel staff are able to access email and exam administration systems from home. One staff member will attend our Hawthorn office from time to time (to check mail, print theory certificates, etc.), however the physical office is presently closed to visitors. The message service on our main telephone number is temporarily not available, but we will promptly respond to email enquiries, during business hours. Please send correspondence to our general email address ameb-vic@unimelb.edu.au or complete the Contact Form on the AMEB Victoria website.

We wish you every success with your vitally important teaching programs under these unprecedented circumstances.

Alwyn Mott, BMus, DipEd(Melb), GradDipBusAdmin(Monash), AMusA
General Manager
AMEB Victoria