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TTTV036: All about AMEB exams with Bernard Depasquale

By Tim Topham | Exams

Mar 25 2016

ameb exams bernard depasquale

The AMEB has been examining music students in Australia for almost one hundred years, but they’re certainly not stuck in the past. They offer online music theory exams, piano for leisure and have recently added Rock School exams.

As their 100 year anniversary approaches AMEB are looking for new ways to support the work of music teachers across Australia. The online music theory exams are great for busy piano parents and the Rock School exams are an exciting addition for those students looking for a less traditional track. AMEB is also looking at ways to provide more professional development opportunities for music teachers, to continue to promote music learning in Australia.

Bernard Depasquale has been working with the AMEB for the last 8 years , and he’s on the podcast today to explain what it is that makes the AMEB different, and what their plans are for the future.

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • What makes the AMEB different to the other exam boards in Australia
  • What’s involved in the ‘Piano for Leisure’ exams
  • Why the AMEB is bringing the Rock School syllabus to Australia
  • How the online music theory exams work
  • How the AMEB ensures consistency in marking
  • Why the AMEB gives letter grades instead of percentages
  • How the AMEB exams are structured
  • The theory requirements for AMEB exams
  • How long each AMEB syllabus lasts
  • The diplomas offered with AMEB

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Items mentioned in this podcast:

Thank you for Tuning In!

There are a lot of podcasts you could be tuning into today, and I’m grateful that you’ve chosen mine.

Being a full-time teacher myself, I know how busy teachers are and how much time, effort and passion we put into our students. Sometimes, the last thing we want to do in our time off is listen to more piano teaching stuff! So, well done for using this time for self-improvement.

Whether you’re at the gym, on the bike or in the car, I know that you and your students will get lots out of what you learn in the long run. Just make sure you try out some of the ideas before they get lost in the business of your next lessons.

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Are you considering entering students for AMEB exams?

What did you find most interesting about their approach the piano exams? Do you like the idea of the Rock School or Piano for Leisure syllabi?


About the Author

Tim Topham is the founder and director of TopMusic. Tim hosts the popular TopCast show, blogs regularly at and speaks at local and international conferences on topics such as pedagogy, business, marketing and entrepreneurship. Tim has been featured in American Music Teacher, The Piano Teacher Magazine, California Music Teacher and EPTA Piano Professional. Tim holds an MBA in Educational Leadership, BMus, DipEd and AMusA.

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