This customer service statement sets out our aims, our undertakings to you, our customer, and our performance targets for our exam service.
Our exam service
We strive for integrity, efficiency, accessibility, openness and excellence in three core areas:
Quality and consistency of assessment
We provide trained examiners who deliver reliable and consistent assessments according to clear, published criteria. We base our exams on thoroughly researched syllabuses and monitor them through consistent quality-assurance procedures.
The exam experience
We aim to provide a positive exam experience for every candidate by ensuring all elements of the exam meet the highest possible standards. This includes the examiner, the exam environment, and the welcome provided by our stewards and invigilators on the day.
We provide support online and by phone for all aspects of our exams. We aim for ease, clarity and accessibility in delivering all our processes.
For further details, please see the policies page of our website.
The exam environment
A suitable exam environment is provided for practical (instrumental and singing) exams, including a waiting room or area for candidates (and their escorts/accompanists) and an exam room with a satisfactory piano which is, where possible, out of hearing from the waiting room. Where possible, an additional room or area where candidates may spend a few moments warming up will be available.
For Music Theory exams, we provide a suitable environment, including a quiet exam room that is properly lit, heated and ventilated, with tables that allow reasonable spacing of candidates.
Monitoring our exam centres
We monitor are public venue facilities. We supply full guidance about the facilities, conditions and arrangements that must be in place for exams sat at private venues provided by a teacher or school.
Results and certification
From 2020, our examiners will use an iPad to complete mark forms for practical graded exams and ARSM exams. The examiner-marking app will automatically record exams, providing audio recordings to enhance and strengthen our quality assurance and appeals processes and our examiner. These recordings are for internal use only.
We publish a digital mark form available as a PDF for all practical graded exams and ARSM exams via the applicant’s online account. We will send the certificate to the applicant shortly after the results have been published. We publish the total marks for Music Theory exams online, and applicants receive a breakdown of their marks in hard copy with their certificate.
We complete checks on a sample of mark forms every exam session for quality assurance. We investigate queries arising from these checks before we issue the mark forms and certificates.
In the UK and Ireland we issue practical results within a week of the exam, Music Theory results four weeks (online) and six weeks (postal) after the exam, Music Medals results two weeks after the assessment, and diploma results eight to twelve weeks after the exam.
In other territories, we issue practical results three to six weeks after the exam, Music Theory results six weeks (online) or within three months (postal) after the exam, and diploma results within twelve weeks of the exam.
Duplicate certificates and past results
We provide a duplicate certificate, amendment and replacement service and a service for confirming past exam results. Any fees payable are published here together with the certificate amendment and replacement form.
Queries, complaints and feedback
We aim to acknowledge all formal complaints, enquiries and appeals within three working days. Following investigation and any action taken, we aim to send a reply within four weeks.
We welcome comments about our services through general feedback, our website forums and questionnaires, and we use this feedback when adapting, developing and extending our services.
We answer telephone, email or written enquiries promptly, with an initial acknowledgement when an immediate reply is not possible and a full reply in all cases within four weeks.