I N F O R M A T I O N   I N   E N G L I S H

About examinations

The Icelandic Music Schools Curriculum (2000) requires that with completion of courses of study at Elementary, Intermediate and Advanced levels, pupils take examinations in two parts; firstly an instrumental/vocal assessment and secondly an assessment in music theory. It is not essential that pupils successfully complete both parts of the examination during the same year. Pupils are not however, permitted to sit either part of Intermediate examinations before they have satisfied requirements for both elements of the examination at Elementary level. Similarly, pupils are not permited to enter for either elements of Advanced level examinations before they have successfully completed both elements at Intermediate levels. To successfully complete Advanced level examinations pupils are required to hold a solo recital (in or outside pupil's respective music school) as well as satisfying examination requirements in both practical and theoretical elements.

Objectives and organization

These examinations have several objectives. The examinations are intended to decide whether and to what extend pupils have fulfilled required level of skills in accordance with syllabus requirements. They are also intended to provide information about specific areas of curriculum and teaching in music schools, assessing pupils' attainment in relation to the aims and objectives of the national music schools' curriculum and informing pupils about their achievements in various parts of the examinations.

According to curriculum and syllabus regulations, pupils may be assessed for instrumental/vocal examinations at any time of the school year. Pupils should be assessed at the music school where they study, although two or more schools may wish to share an examination centre at one school in the interests of economy.

The founding of the Icelandic Music Schools Examinations Board means a fundamental change in assessment procedures: where music schools previously employed individuals to assess their pupils, this assessment at Elementary, Intemediate and Advanced levels, is now in the hands of examiners approved by the board. Schools should approach the board with requests for examination assessment. Since it is essential to use examiners time and the board's resources as economically as possible, the exact dates of examinations will be decided by agreement between the board and respective music schools.

Marks and minimum requirements

Examiners are required to give both written comments and marks for each part of the instrumental/vocal examinations. Pupils are awarded marks reflecting their level of attainment in individual parts of the examination, up to the maximum available marks for each of those parts. The total maximum marks for all parts of the examination is 100. Only whole marks are permissible. Final grades ranging from 1 - 10, shall be awarded, obtained by dividing the total marks by 10 to the first decimal point (e.g. a total of 79 marks = 7,9) To pass examinations, students must obtain at least 60 marks in instrumental/vocal assessments, giving a grade of 6,0 and obtain a grade of at least 6,0 in theory assessments.


Two kinds of certification are used by the board: Firstly comments/marks sheets, with marks and comments for individual parts of the examination are issued to students after the completition of instrumental/vocal examinations. Secondly a certificate, without comments or marks, will be issued, on completition of ALL parts of the examination.