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Scotland - Music In School - Standard And Highers


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#1 freddy27

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Posted 30 January 2009 - 20:54

I hope there are some readers in Scotland that can help me understand the school exam requirements for music in schools in Scotland.

Standard Grades

Looking at website of the SQA is says that you have to play two contrasting instruments:

http://www.sqa.org.u...es/nq/music.pdf

-Para 3.5

Is this correct that for Standard Grade you could not play a woodwind instrument for your solo piece and then another type of woodwind instrument for group performance?

What sort of standard compared to the ASBRM would you need to be to get a good grade at Standard grade music for solo and group performance?

Higher Grade

The link below would suggest that you can play two woodwind instruments for your Higher exam as long as they meet the requirements here:

http://www.sqa.org.u...Instruments.pdf

Am I reading this correctly that this is permitted for Higher exams but not Standard Grade?

Again roughly what level of grade would you need to be at ASBRM to get a good grade at Higher music for solo and group performing?

Hopefully someone is familiar with all of this and can give me a bit of a steer.

Many thanks.


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#2 Guest: Miss Ross_*

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Posted 30 January 2009 - 20:59

You cannot perform for SG on two instruments from the same family. However, you *can* perform guitar and bass guitar... which to me isn't entirely fair! So that means, for example, you couldn't use flute and oboe, or violin and double bass.

For standard grade, all that is required is Grade 3. You can, of course, perform pieces at a higher standard than that, but you don't *need* to.

I'm not sure about the instrumentation for Higher - I'll check. Higher is approximately Grade 4 for both instruments, although a lot of candidates are in fact of a higher standard than that.

Hope that helps a little. smile.gif

Edit: From that second link, it looks as though you can indeed combine 2 instruments from the same family. I haven't encountered anyone who has done this though...
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#3 harpist

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Posted 31 January 2009 - 12:11

Yes, Grade 3 is all that is needed for standard grade. A musical performance will get you a grade 1 for that section of the exam. For higher, performing 'perfect' Grade 4 pieces would score full marks. You do need to be that standard on both instruments though which is what most pupils find most challenging. As far as I know, not many people actually do group performing. Everyone at my school just did 2 solo performances on their different instruments
I think that grid is for both Standard Grade and Higher. It wouldn't make much sense if the instrument regulations changes! For both exams, you can play two woodwind instruments but they must not be very related , e.g. you couldn't do oboe and bassoon but you could do oboe and clarinet. The second pair would be seen as contrasting instruments which I think is what they mean in paragraph 3.5 So for standard grade you could play 2 different woodwind instruments, depending on what they were.

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#4 laura-clarinet

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Posted 31 January 2009 - 13:20

I was always under the impression you cant to do instruments that are from the same family, except guitar and bass.

I wouldnt have thought you could do oboe and clarinet as they are very similar? (correct me if im wrong!)

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#5 Guest: Miss Ross_*

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Posted 31 January 2009 - 13:24

Hmm... Now I'm confused - one of you agrees with me, and one of you doesn't! Does anyone actually *know*? ph34r.gif
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#6 harpist

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Posted 31 January 2009 - 17:38

laugh.gif The schools just follow the guidelines from the SQA. The rules of what instrument combinations you can do are here. They apply for all the SQA music exams smile.gif
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#7 freddy27

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Posted 31 January 2009 - 18:06

Many thanks all for the replies so far.

I think the thing that is confusing me is the fact that at section 4.2.1 of the Standard Grade Regulations it says

"Performing
Performing will involve solo performance on one instrument and performance in ensemble
on another instrument; the instruments should be chosen from two of the following
categories.

Accordion
Bagpipes
Brass
Snare drum/drumkit/timpani
Guitar/Bass guitar
Harp (including clarsach)
Keyboard
Strings (including fiddle)
Tuned percussion
Voice
Woodwind (including recorder)
(In cases of doubt regarding choice of instruments, presenting centres should contact the
Board.)"

These regulation are dated 1988 and the general guidance notes on approved combinations of instruments is dated September 2007.

One of the posters who replied also mentioned that you could play both instruments as solo pieces which is not consistent with the 1988 extract above.

Also this would not be consistent with the comments that you can elect to play Guitar and Bass guitar.

So this has me wondering if the regulations for Standard Grade have actually been modifed?

If someone doesn't know the definitive position I will happily email the SQA and post the reply -

Thanks again for the contributions - we will get there in the end smile.gif

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#8 Guest: Miss Ross_*

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Posted 31 January 2009 - 18:13

I believe the regulations regarding Standard Grade were changed somewhere around 2005/2006, but don't quote me on that, and of course the guidelines are constantly being ammended. Certainly, a supply teacher who took over for our last few months of studying Standard Grade was shocked that our previous teacher hadn't told us that both instruments could be performed as solos. It would maybe best to Email the SQA and ask for clairification. biggrin.gif
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#9 laura-clarinet

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Posted 01 February 2009 - 13:13

We do both as solo!

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