Esplanade Theatres on the Bay, on the waterfront of Singapore's bay, purpose built as a concert hall and theatre for the performing arts

Singapore music exams board and Online Music Exams launch remote performance examinations

The global edtech platform Online Music Exams (OME) and Singapore’s International Performing and Visual Arts Examination Board (IPVAEB) have partnered to provide a programme of remotely-assessed Classical piano and violin performance exams for students in Malaysia, Hong Kong, UK and Singapore.

Using the UK-based technology firm’s SARA artificial intelligence system and the company’s team of experienced piano teachers, OME has worked with IPVAEB to curate a catalogue of piano works which helps students learn technique through each level. The pieces are chosen to be enjoyable and challenging and the system allows students to work and be examined in their own time zones and, thanks to SARA’s AI exam facilitator, in their own languages.

The qualifications gained are internationally recognised, including in the EU and UK, and offer the opportunity for students to acquire official qualifications from home. While the SARA software takes students through the exams at the time of their choosing, the results are passed on to one of a team of music examiners, selected by OME and its partner organisations. All are fully accredited and have a minimum of 10 years’ professional experience.

Results are government certified and received within five days of taking the exams. The qualifications provide European Qualification Credits and Europe and National Qualification Credits for the UK, which are also recognised in countries around the world.

Online Music Exams is creating similar partnerships with examination boards and schools around the world and its system of course accreditation allows teachers and schools in more remote areas to have their courses assessed and certified by internationally-accepted examination boards.

OME was the first platform to create and provide government-accredited music exams to Grade 8/level three diplomas completely online. The system is moderated independently by The Learning Machine (TLM), and both SARA and the human examiners remain consistent and accurate in their judgement.

Sara Shevlin, Creative Director at OME, is enthusiastic about the increased reach her company’s service gives to global music qualifications. ‘Music shouldn’t be elitist. It’s for everyone and what we’re doing with our partners is opening up a pathway to a career in music for people who may not have had that opportunity before,’ she told MUSIC:ED.

The IPVAEB’s exams are regulated by Ofqual in the UK and are run in partnership with the Australian Guild of Music Education (AGME).

IPVAEB commented, ‘Our goal is to make accredited music examinations easily accessible to our candidates around the world.

‘We chose to partner with Online Music Exams because their advanced technology enables music examinations to be conducted in a more efficient and cost-effective manner internationally, whilst adhering to the highest industry standards.

‘This means that for the first time, our candidates can gain accredited qualifications within days, using a system that conducts recognised music examinations online at any time, in any location, and in a language of their preference.’

The OME platform has already established partnerships with the International Professional Music Education Association, Furtados School of Music, Loughton Music Academy, Self-Isolation Choir, The Music Works, Island of Music, the Roth Academy, Modern Music School and Peembeck and more announcements are expected shortly. Schools seeking to be accredited as part of the OME scheme can apply via the website. 

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