Syllabus | CCOM Chinese Instrument Exam

Syllabus | CCOM Chinese Instrument Exam

Exam Syllabus
Central Conservatory of Music of China Overseas Chinese Music Standard Grade Examination

CCOM Chinese Instrument Exam Syllabus

Exam Syllabus

Year 2017

I) Principles

The Central Conservatory of Music (CCOM) of China is China’s most senior musical institute offering accredited examinations to applicants. The Standard Grade Examination Committee of the CCOM has the mandate of expanding musical education and its stylistic tradition, and it provides authoritative musical achievement level assessment for overseas Chinese instrumental musicians and students. The examination material is based on the assessment criteria utilized by the CCOM.  The materials which are compiled by highly experienced experts have an increasing level of difficulty with an emphasis on the core techniques as the principles of the assessment.  Students who follow the basic increments of the learning material will find themselves steadily progressing, reaching new levels of achievement. To expand the culture of Chinese music, the CCOM, in collaboration with California Youth Chinese Symphony, will host a Chinese Instrument  Grade Examination in the United States.  Candidates will be tested by examiners from CCOM of Beijing on material compiled by the CCOM, and subsequently will be issued a Certificate of Accomplishment by the CCOM.  The aim of this collaboration is to raise the professional quality of Chinese music performance, and to encourage the local development of Chinese music.

II) The Examination

  1. Eligibility:

All candidates with proper identification are allowed to register for the examination.

  1. Subjects:

Erhu, Pipa, Yangqin, Guzheng, Zhongruan, Suona, Dizi

Sheng (new in 2016)

  1. Grade Levels:
    1. Performance levels for all instruments are classified from level one to nine, in addition to the highest level ranking, the Performance Certificate.
    2. Candidates applying for levels one through six can apply any levels they wish.
    3. Candidates who skip grades after level seven must, in addition, play one music piece from the previous level and submit half of the exam fees of the previous level. For example, a candidate who has never taken level seven exam but wish to take level eight exam will need to play two song pieces and one etude piece from level eight, one song piece from level seven, submit exam fees of level eight and half the exam fees of level seven.
    4. Candidates are not allowed to apply for more than one levels for the same instrument within the same year.
    5. Candidates applying for the Performance Certificate should have received certification for Level 9 instrument practical exam.

4. Examination Material:

Only the Examination book (Overseas version) published by the Central Conservatory of Music Examination Board should be used.

5. Examination Requirements:

a) The “overseas version” of exam syllabus, compiled by the CCOM, is used for this examination.

b) Examination includes:

      • Grade 1-6: One practice piece and one music piece selected from the Examination music list of the corresponding Examination level.
      • Grade 7-9 and Performance Certificate: One practice piece and two music pieces selected from the Examination music list of the corresponding Examination level.

c) Candidate must bring their examination material into the testing area, regardless of the candidate’s preference to perform with or without their music.  Failure to comply may result in disqualification from the examination.

d) All candidates should play the selected music piece(s) memorized.

e) Candidates being tested on Yangqin and Guzheng are not required to bring their own instrument. Yangqin and Guzheng are provided at the testing area. Should any candidates want to bring their own Yangqin or Guzheng instruments, staff must be notified upon registration. Candidates being tested on all other instruments are required to bring their own instruments.

f) Instructors of candidates testing for Levels 1 to 4 of the assessment are allowed to help tune the candidates’ instruments.  Candidates testing for Levels 5 and above are expected to tune their own instruments.  In addition, candidates who bring their own Yangqin and Guzheng instruments are required to tune their own instruments.

g) Due to time constraints or the performance of the candidate, the examiner may instruct to end the candidates’ performance at any time.

h) No accompaniments are allowed for any level of assessment.

6. Examination Rules:

a)  Candidates must arrive at the waiting area 30 minutes prior to the start of the exam to register with examination personnel.  Candidates are allowed to start the exam only after their documentation and identification have been properly verified.  Late arrivals may result in being disqualified from the examination.

b)  Candidates who do not arrive on time are considered to have forfeited their examination and are not given the opportunity for a re-test or a refund.  If the candidate suffers from a communicable illness and is unable to attend, but is able to provide proper medical documentation within ten days of the end of the examination, the test fee will be refunded.

c)  Candidates are required to bring and present their examination permit and personal identification.  If the examination permit is misplaced prior to the examination, the participant is required to apply for a replacement examination permit as soon as possible.

d)  Candidates and related persons are expected to attend to their own personal belongings.  The safety of young candidates is also the responsibility of the parent, teacher, or guardian of the young candidate who signs the application form.

e)  With the exception of the representatives of the CCOM, local personnel of the assessment test, translator, and related staff, loitering, eavesdropping, watching, and either video or audio recording of any kind are strictly prohibited in front of the entrance to the examination area.

f)  With the exception of equipment necessary to the examination, candidates are prohibited from carrying other items into the examination area.  Violators may be disqualified from the examination.

g)  The examination will be conducted in Mandarin Chinese.  If the candidate requires translation services, please specify the request for translation services upon registration for the examination.

h)  The candidate’s performance during the examination may be recorded by the examination authorities.  This is to ensure fair assessment, to assist in grade adjustment, and for assessment analysis purposes.  This recording may be stored (with identifying information removed), and is unavailable to outside personnel or to any examination candidates.

i)   Candidates who perform with their music pieces are responsible for turning their own pages, and must not require the assistance of the assessment panel.  If a candidate requires assistance, the candidate must notify the staff at registration, and upon authorization, friends or acquaintances are allowed to help the participant turn their pages (instructors or parents are both not permitted to do this task).

j)    Examination results will be mailed to candidate within 30 business days and certificates within 90 business days after the examination.

k)  CCOM and California Youth Chinese Symphony reserve the right to the final assessment.

III) Registration in 2014

1. Timeline:

Submissions Acceptance                     2017-9-2                 

Submissions Deadline                         2017-9-25                Monday

E-Mailing of Exam Permits               2017-9-30 ~ 10-12

Examination Dates                              2017-10-28 ~ 10-29   Saturday, Sunday

2. Application Procedure:

a)  All applications must fulfill CCOM requirements.  Both the CCOM and California Youth Chinese Symphony reserve the right to exclude any applicant from the examination.

b)  Late applications will be individually assessed by the host association.  If granted the right to examination, applicants are required to pay a late charge of $40.

c)  Application forms can be obtained from: music instructors, music education centres, or by downloading from the website ( Starting in year 2013, online registration is accepted. Starting in year 2016, only online registration is accepted.

d)  Before filling out the application form, please read over the examination syllabus, application forms and guides, and the payment list.

e) Online paypal payment or check is accepted. For check, please make check payable to California Youth Chinese Symphony, to the following address before the application deadline:

California Youth Chinese Symphony, P.O. Box 4192, Santa Clara, CA 95056-4192, USA

g)  Please submit the correct application fee according to the payment list, otherwise the application will be voided.  Once submitted, the application fee will not be returned, nor can it be transferred to another applicant.


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Central Conservatory of Music 中央音樂學院

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