Skip to main content

About our examiners

We employ around 600 highly qualified and skilled generalist music examiners. Many are performers, teachers and conductors. Plenty of them have taken exams themselves and often perform on stage, so they know what it feels like to be an exam candidate. 

Manner, method, marking

All our examiners are moderated and trained on three key things: 

  • Manner: It’s the little things in the exam room that make the difference. Our examiners welcome candidates into the room, help them adjust the height of the stand and give them the opportunity to warm up on their instrument. 
  • Method: Making the day run smoothly is vital to a great exam experience, so we train our examiners in managing the pace of the exam, the way the aural tests are conducted, and many other aspects of the exam day. 
  • Marking: Our exams are music exams first, rather than instrumental or singing exams. ABRSM examiners assess all instruments and singing as generalist musicians instead of instrumental or vocal specialists. They use the same universal marking criteria to assess the musical outcome, not the technique used to achieve it, which allows consistent marking across all instruments. You can find the marking criteria in our qualification specifications and syllabuses. 

Individual experience is combined with comprehensive training, both before and after acceptance to the examiner team. Continuing professional development, moderation and monitoring mean that we have a team of examiners that we trust and know to be impartial, objective and consistent. 

Meet the Chief Examiners

Our Chief Examiners collectively lead, support and guide the wider team of examiners, share insight and knowledge with teachers, learners and staff, and contribute to the development of our music assessment provision. 

Music Performance
Become an examiner

Are you looking for a freelance role that supports developing musicians, complements a portfolio career and lets you travel? If yes, music examining could be just the thing for you. 

What we look for 

  • A strong educational background 
  • Experience and qualities to cope and react positively in a range of situations 
  • Experience of working with children 
  • Competent but not ‘concert performance’ piano-playing  
  • Time commitment of at least six days, three times a year 
  • Willingness to travel across the UK and internationally   

What you'll enjoy 

  • Comprehensive training and ongoing professional development if you're successful (unique for a freelance role in music education) 
  • Competitive pay with the potential to work as much as you want 
  • Dedicated helpdesk for queries and support 
  • International SOS support when working overseas for any medical or security issues 

Don’t miss out!

Join our community today. Subscribe to our mailing list and be the first to receive updates on all the latest news from ABRSM

Cello with colourway