Unresponsive recording page
If after you press stop on your recording and the page appears to freeze and goes back to ‘click start’, please wait. This issue happens when your upload speed has dropped below the threshold of 2 Mbps. If this happens you may also experience a slow upload time when on the upload page. In these instances try and move closer to your router or close any other programs you may have open that are slowing your speed.
What is the best examination board?
There are many examination boards and course providers that provide materials to help students get to their desired level of attainment. There is no ‘one size fits all’ and students are encouraged to look at the ‘syllabus’ to decide which exam board or course provider is best suited to them. It is even worth looking at the ethos of each exam board and course provider to see what help they are able to offer alongside your learning journey.
Things to look out for and take into consideration:
- What song choices do they have.
- How many books do you have to purchase,
- What are the exam prices, more expensive does not mean better.
- Are there any hidden costs to the learning materials, for example, do you have to pay separately for the backing tracks to the songs.
- Are they accredited, in the UK, OFQUAL is the recognised body for accreditation of educaitonal courses.
- Are you an environmentalist? How does your exam board or course provider look after your environment and not waste paper
Who are Online Music Exams?
Online Music Exams are an edu-tech platform that facilitates music exams and assessments online. Students can take exams from books they have been studying and with course providers they have been studying with as long as the course provider has signed up to use online music exams.
Can I use my Mobile Phone
If you take a ‘Performance exam’ where you only need to perform pieces, then you can use your Mobile to upload and record your video performances. These can be done live or using pre recorded recordings.
There are some exams that will only allow elements to be recorded via your phone. For example, exams that require the examiner assistant SARA to create questions in the exam such as sight reading tests and aural, will not be able to be taken via your mobile. These parts instead will need a desktop or laptop in order to use the SARA platform.
My exam appears to ‘freeze’ after I stop the recording
After you have pressed ‘stop’ on your recording, the exam page should move to the ‘uploading’ screen. If your internet upload speed has reduced to below 1 Mpbs when you press ‘stop’ this may give the appearance that the exam has frozen. In this instance, try and move closer to your router or wait until your internet upload speed is back above 1Mbps.
Your Upload speed will also determine how quickly the ‘uploading’ screen takes to upload your recording. Uploading can take anywhere from 2 seconds to 8 minutes and is down to the students upload speed and the length of the video.
If you are not able to rectify the problem, contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org or through our chat on the right hand side.
For the best experience, we recommend that you have downloaded the latest versions of your operating system and browser. Exams can only be taken on a desktop or laptop with an internal or external camera and microphone. We recommend that you have access to a stable internet connection of at least 2Mbps download and 2Mbps upload.
You can use your Mobile Phone to upload videos where allowed. Performance exams can be uploaded in their entirety via Mobile Phone. This will bypass SARA and so she will not be able to guide you through the exam.
Where do I find what I need to learn for my exam
The different elements of your exam will be provided by the course provider on their website or in their books. Information on how to get these materials will be placed on the course providers website. Each course provider will have a ‘syllabus’ which explains everything you need to know and what you need to learn for your exam in one document. It will also tell you which pieces you need to learn or give you guidance to which pieces you can play.
Who marks my exam
An instrument and language specific examiner will mark your exam. SARA will take you through the exam and ask you all the necessary questions. Once completed she will then send the exam to the most appropriate examiner.
All examiners are music qualified educators and teachers with at least 10 years of experience, as well as having been trained and qualified as examiners for OME and our partners.
Can I use an external interface
Yes you can. Please go to 2:19 in the video below to learn how to connect your external interface.
What can I expect from the platform, what is the experience like?
Audio & Visual troubleshooting
If we can’t access your webcam or microphone –
First check that you have your external camera plugged in if using an external camera and that you have checked it is working on other platforms.
Secondly check that you do not have any other visual or audio streaming platform open, such as Zoom or Google Meet.
Thirdly check that you have the latest version of your internet browser downlaoded.
If our platform is still unable to find your webcam and microphone then try the troubleshooting video below.
If you are unable to record, please look at the following tips:
If using Safari or Firefox: The Safari & Firefox browser has settings that can restrict the recording and auto play in your exam. If you find this is happening then please go to your settings and switch ‘autoplay on’ for this site.
For Firefox users: There is some helpful advice on this site on how to change your browser settings: https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/block-autoplay
‘Unblock video for the currently displayed website’ for MAC users:
1. In the Safari app on your Mac, choose Safari > Settings for This Website. You can also Control-click in the Smart Search field, then choose Settings for This Website.
2. Hold the pointer to the right of Auto-Play, then click the pop-up menu and choose this option: Allow All Auto-Play: Lets videos on this website play automatically.
Also, ensure your Mac is not in Low battery mode:
Go to Apple > System Preferences
Select the Energy Saver preference pane
You’ll now have access to a range of settings.
Select the Battery tab to disable ‘Low battery mode’
Do our students have to come to your platform to take our exam
No. We also licence SARA and so long as everything fits, then we can add our service to your website.
I am an international student, what do I need to study in the UK?
Here are two articles from Further education London college icmp: https://www.icmp.ac.uk/blog/international-students-what-you-need-start-your-music-studies
I have more than 1 internal camera, how do I select the right one?
If you have more than one built in camera and the wrong camera is being selected then try this:
If you are using the chrome browser then go to chrome://settings/content/camera and set which camera you would like to use.
Alternatively, you should be able to set which camera is the default in Control Panel on Windows:
1. Open your Control Panel and click on Devices and Printers.
2. If the webcam is listed in your window, right-click on it and click Set As Default.
Also, you may wish to watch the video below and skip to 1:06 to learn how to add your camera.
Who can be in the room with me and what can and can’t they do?
Sometimes it is very helpful that you have someone you trust in the room with you to turn a page or help with technology, but only 1 person maximum other than yourself. It is very important that the examiner does not feel that this person is influencing your performance in any way as this will void your exam without a refund. Examples that might void your exam can be:
- A clap or a click during your playing.
- Nodding or moving unnecessarily.
- Someone pointing at the music or instrument during playing.
- Giving you verbal help in between recordings.
- Playing another instrument or device.
- You keep looking at this person through your playing or out of the corner of your eye.
Anything obvious. Don’t give our examiners a reason to void your exam because of someone else in the room. If you don’t need someone else in the room with you then don’t have one. You may feel that you perform better without someone in the room distracting your flow.
I didn’t get the mark I wanted, can I take it again?
Yes. You can take it the second you get the mark you were not happy with.
When will I receive my results?
You will receive your results within 5 working days.
What happens if I mess up a recording or my instrument breaks?
Unfortunately this is part of the exam experience and may not be accepted by your examiner. Please refer to our preparations and rules to understand what is and what is not accepted.
What happens if my computer shuts down while I am recording?
Part or all of your recording may already be safe with us. You must contact us as soon as this happens and alert us to the issue. Anything that you pressed submit for where you received a confirmation screen, will be safe!
What happens in the identity check?
You will be asked to repeat a small paragraph through spoken word to the camera to verify your identity. If you are under the age of 18, then this will need to be done by a parent or guardian. The wording will appear above the recording screen.
I’m not sure if my recording was a good enough quality all the way through.
Don’t worry. If you were able to start recording, then let our technology do the rest. If there is a problem we will let you know. Please refer to the exam preparations and rules before you start recording.
What happens to my recordings?
Your recordings will be sent to us with secure standard encryption from end to end. They are then stored on our secure cloud system. They will be marked by our qualified and safety-checked examiners. These recordings can not be downloaded anywhere else and 30 days after your results are sent to you, they will be permanently wiped from our system.
How can the monitoring and marking on an online recording be as good as an examiner in the same room as you?
Both centre-based exams and online exams provide different benefits. Marking an online recording means that the examiner is closer to the student than in an exam room. They can see more and can stop the recording, playing back any part they want to hear again. The problems an examiner can experience when marking in the same room as you is that they are under pressure to get their comments and marks written straight away. They have to take their eyes off of you while writing. While writing their points they have to be listening out to everything new that you are playing and the examiners have to keep this in their head as they are writing. It is quite a juggle, and although these examiners are most likely excellent at their jobs, notes will be missed and mistakes made. Online recordings aim to reduce this risk and reduce the stress of the examiner.
I have just finished submitting my last recording, it’s 4am on New Year’s Day…when am I going to get my results?
We have examiners across the globe in different time zones ready to take up your recording. Our systems allow you to receive your marks and certificate via email as early as 24 hours later and within 5 working days.
I didn’t agree with the mark you gave me, I am a Rock God and you didn’t give me Rock God status! I deserve a remark!
If you feel our markings are not right and that you want a remark you can simply contact us within 7 days and we will send the same recordings to an externally-moderated examiner for the same fee. If you receive a mark that changes your certification level to a higher level, then we will refund your re-entry fee. If we give you the same certification level again, or even lower, then unfortunately that will be your mark and you will lose your fee. Your final mark will be your retake mark. So be absolutely sure that you know what you are doing!
If you have a question that we haven’t answered or experienced an issue that we should know about please