Group Performance Music: Entry Levels

Entry level qualifications in group performance are available in Music at Entry Level 1, Entry Level 2 and Entry Level 3. These are unregulated qualifications that are entirely assessed through teacher observation.

These observations are based on an individual's participation in group activities through their lessons, rehearsals and performances. At Entry Level 1 the focus is primarily on the learner’s enjoyment and developing their confidence in participating in a music group. The flexibility of the qualification allows for groups of any size.

Key Features at: Music: Entry Levels

  • Internal Assessment with External Moderation
  • Individually Assessed in Group Participation
  • Unregulated Qualification
  • For Groups of Any Size

Group Performance – Music: Entry Level

Group Performance – Music: Entry Level

RSL Awards' entry Level group assessments in music focus upon the recognition of achievement through the development and demonstration of practical skills, knowledge and confidence within the context of learning and performing music within a group. The ultimate aim is the creation of performers with the skills, knowledge and confidence to be able to perform live to an audience.

Certification titles

The qualification will be shown on the certificate as one of the following:

  • RSL Entry Level 1 Award in Group performance (Music)
  • RSL Entry Level 2 Award in Group performance (Music)
  • RSL Entry Level 3 Award in Group performance (Music)

Assessment

The qualifications are internally assessed (i.e. staff in centres assess the work produced by learners). At Entry Level 1 the qualification is assessed entirely on the learner’s participation in group lessons. At Entry Levels 2 and 3 live performance is one of the elements that is assessed. All learning and assessment takes place within guided learning time — there is no independent learning expected from learners or groups at these levels. Assessment information is set out in detail in the following chapter.

Programme delivery

Centres are free to offer these qualifications using any mode of delivery that meets the needs of their learners. Whatever the mode of delivery, centres must ensure that learners have appropriate access to the resources required for high quality delivery of the course, and subject specialist staff.

Centre Approval

Centres must apply for approval by RSL prior to enrolling learners. Approval documentation can be found in the Centre Approval tab on this page. Centres seeking approval should consult the CQ Centre Handbook for full details on the approval process and the documentation they are required to submit.

Entry Level 1

Learning Outcome

Learners will be able to:
1. Participate in a music ensemble

Assessment Criteria

Learners can:
1.1. Follow simple musical instructions
1.2. Demonstrate a developing sense of confidence when playing within an ensemble
1.3. Demonstrate enjoyment and engagement while working with other musicians
1.4. Demonstrate appropriate behaviour when undertaking ensemble activities

Summative Assessment Methods

Lessons, rehearsals and performances
Learners should be able to demonstrate that they can follow simple musical instructions — for example, to play back a simple rhythm, to change to a different pattern at a particular part in a song, to play a certain part loudly or softly etc.

Learners should develop greater self-confidence over the course of the qualification — tutors should make an initial assessment of the learner’s confidence in participating in the ensemble at the beginning of the qualification in order to record their developmental progression over the course of the qualification.

Learners should demonstrate enjoyment and engagement while working with other musicians — at this level, this is having a positive attitude in group sessions and being a willing participant in activities.

Learners should be able to demonstrate that they can follow simple instructions regarding their behaviour in group activities, i.e., learning and following simple rules regarding their conduct during these sessions.

Entry Level 2

Learning Outcomes

Learners will be able to:
1. Communicate with tutors and other musicians
2. Demonstrate developmental progression as an ensemble performer
3. Demonstrate focus and professionalism when playing within an ensemble
4. Perform music to an audience as part of an ensemble

Assessment Criteria

Learners can:
1.1 Respond to musical instructions, demonstrating an awareness of basic musical concepts
1.2 Demonstrate a developing awareness of their part within the ensemble
2.1 Demonstrate developmental progression in ensemble-based performance skills
2.2 Demonstrate increased confidence when playing within an ensemble
3.1 Demonstrate enjoyment and engagement while working with other musicians
3.2 Demonstrate appropriate behaviour when undertaking ensemble activities
4.1 Start, stop and move between elements at the correct places within a song in a live performance to an audience

Summative Assessment Methods

Lessons, rehearsals and performances
Learning outcome 1: Learners should be able to demonstrate that they can follow simple musical instructions and be aware of the standard musical vocabulary used to define basic musical concepts (for example, tempo, beat, dynamics, verse, chorus) and communicate with fellow musicians. At this level learners should demonstrate the beginnings of an awareness of the nature of their part, for example, whether it’s predominantly rhythmic or melodic, whether it’s a supporting or leading role.

Learning outcome 2: This learning outcome is predominantly based on the learner’s skill development and increasing confidence as a performer over the course of the qualification. In order to measure this, tutors should make an initial assessment of these at the beginning of the qualification so they can record the learner’s developmental progression. At this level, ensemble-based performance skills will be very simple, familiar activities that have been developed through extensive guidance from tutors.

Learning outcome 3: Learners should demonstrate enjoyment and engagement while working with other musicians and an awareness of good practice (professionalism) when working together with other performers, for example, not playing their instrument when not asked to, not talking over peers or tutors, maintaining focus during lessons and rehearsals.

Performance
Learning outcome 4: At this level, learners need to demonstrate that they can perform live as part of a group. There isn’t a minimum performance length, but the evidence must be long enough to demonstrate that the assessment criteria has been fulfilled. Evidence for this learning outcome will be video footage of the learner performing as part of a group. Learners should be able to demonstrate that they can perform an simple part within a live group performance, being able to start and stop at the appropriate times in the song, and change at the correct points where their part changes (verse, chorus etc).

Entry Level 3

Learning Outcomes

Learners will be able to:
1. Communicate with tutors and other musicians
2. Demonstrate developmental progression as an ensemble performer
3. Demonstrate focus and professionalism when playing within an ensemble
4. Perform music to an audience as part of an ensemble

Assessment Criteria

Learners can:
1.1 Understand musical instructions, demonstrating a familiarity with basic musical concepts and vocabulary
1.2 Demonstrate awareness of their own part, and how it contributes to the ensemble
2.1 Demonstrate developmental progression in ensemble-based performance skills and techniques
2.2 Demonstrate a developing awareness of musical interpretation
2.3 Undertake a rehearsal process for a specific performance, demonstrating a familiarity with basic rehearsal practices
3.1 Demonstrate appropriate behaviour within lessons, rehearsals and performances
3.2 Demonstrate safe use of their instrument
3.3 Demonstrate commitment to work with the other musicians towards a successful realisation of a performance
4.1 Start, stop and move between elements at the correct places within a song in a live performance to an audience
4.2 Perform their part in time, with an appropriate sound
4.3 Demonstrate an awareness of an audience

Summative Assessment Methods

Lessons, rehearsals and performances
Learning outcome 1: Learners should be able to demonstrate that they can follow basic musical concepts and recall the standard vocabulary used to define them and to communicate with fellow musicians. At this level learners should be aware of their part and how their instrument contributes to the ensemble, for example, a drummer would be aware that keeping a steady beat was a key aspect of their part, and in doing so they are helping all of the other members of the ensemble keep in time.

Learning outcome 2: This learning outcome is predominantly based on the learner’s development of skills and knowledge over the course of the qualification. In order to measure this, tutors should make an initial assessment of the learner’s skills at the beginning of the qualification so they can record their developmental progression. At this level, ensemble-based performance skills and techniques are simple, familiar activities that have been developed through instructions and guidance from tutors. Learners will begin to show an awareness of musical interpretation, for example, identifying and responding to simple musical moods or changes in expression within a song. The final assessment criteria in this learning outcome relates to the learner’s ability to rehearse for a specific live performance. Learners should have a basic understanding of the purpose of the rehearsal process and how they have developed their part over the course of the rehearsals.

Learning outcome 3: Learners should demonstrate that they are aware of good practice (professionalism) when working together with other performers, for example, not playing their instrument when not asked to, not talking over peers or tutors, listening and responding to feedback on their actions. They should have a basic awareness of instrumental and personal health and safety issues, for example, not standing on wires, or for a vocalist, the importance of not straining your voice. The final assessment criteria in this learning outcome relates to the learner’s focus and commitment when working with others. At this level learners should begin to take some responsibility for the success of the group — demonstrating enthusiasm and teamwork (encouraging others in the ensemble), and being motivated and focused during activities.

Performance
Learning outcome 4: Learners will demonstrate that they can perform as part of a group. Evidence for this learning outcome will be video footage of the learner performing as part of a group (the assessment criteria within this learning outcome can be evidenced over one or multiple performances). There isn’t a minimum performance length, but the evidence must be long enough to demonstrate that all of the assessment criteria have been fulfilled.

Learners should be able to demonstrate that they can perform an elementary part within a live ensemble performance, keeping a generally accurate sense of time and playing with an appropriate sound, for example, demonstrating dynamic changes at relevant points in the song.

At this level, learners should have some awareness of their audience, for example, demonstrating some degree of facial expression and/or physical movement aimed at connecting with the audience.

Delivery Procedure

Centre approval application procedures

Centres must apply for approval by RSL prior to enrolling learners. Please get in touch with our team via business@rslawards.com to start your approval process and begin delivering Group Performance qualifications.

Approval Criteria Could Include

Management systems

There are appropriate systems for managing the effective delivery of the qualifications (for example, regular team meetings and clear lines of responsibility)

Access to assessment

The centre has a clear commitment to equal opportunities

Assuring standards of assessment

There are arrangements for managing assessment which will ensure consistent standards across the centre

Assuring course quality

The centre’s teaching team have the commitment and the expertise to deliver the programme

Induction and learning programme

There is a commitment to providing effective induction and learning support for learners

Staff resources

There is an appropriate staff development plan and appropriate provision to allow this to be implemented

Physical resources

Each centre needs to have appropriate resources for the qualifications which they wish to offer to learners

Group Performance – Music: Entry Level FAQs

Please click the button below to access our help centre for full Group Performance assessment support. We've listed the top FAQs here too. Please do check the help centre before getting in touch with RSL Awards.

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What are RSL Entry Level Performance Awards?

These are pre-Grade 1 qualifications that equip learners with the skills and confidence to learn, rehearse and perform music within a group.

Why would I deliver these qualifications?

More than ever, people are learning music within group lessons. The three RSL Entry Level Performance Awards (Entry Level 1, Entry Level 2 and Entry Level 3) form a progression route from complete beginner to confident group performer, capable of entering the RSL Level 1 Certificate in Group Performance.

How are these qualifications assessed?

All assessment takes place entirely within group lessons, rehearsals and performances, and is carried out by tutors. As there are no set ‘assessments’, these qualifications are unique in their flexibility and accessibility.

What age groups are these qualifications aimed at?

There are no restrictions on the ages of the learners — these qualifications are designed to be accessible to learners of any age.

How do we know what standard each level is?

Tutors should refer to the Assessment Criteria within the syllabus to identify what level their learners should be aiming at. Entry Level 1 can be completed by beginner learners, Entry Level 2 is broadly equivalent with RSL’s Premiere grade exams, Entry Level 3 is broadly equivalent with RSL’s Debut grade exams.

How are these qualifications graded?

Each level has a set of assessment criteria that a learner must achieve. These are all marked as Pass / Below Pass. Tutors will track the learner’s progress across the qualification and will award a Pass for each criterion when they are confident that a learner has fully achieved it.

How do learners evidence their achievement of the assessment criteria?

Many of the assessment criteria can be evidenced in different ways (for example, answering a question, demonstrating something on their instrument or evidenced within the context of a group performance). At Entry Levels 2 and 3 some criteria have to be evidenced through a group performance to an audience.

How are standards maintained if these qualifications are assessed entirely by tutors?

Each year a sample of your learners’ work and your assessment decisions will be submitted to RSL for external moderation, in order to ensure that standards are maintained. If any issues are identified, RSL will not change any of your learners’ grades, but will work with you to improve your delivery of these qualifications.

Do I need to be approved to deliver these qualifications?

Yes, you will need to complete an approval form to confirm that you have the appropriate resources, teaching staff and policies in place to successfully deliver these qualifications to your learners. While these are not mandatory, we recommend that all centres have the following policies in place before they begin delivery.

  • Safeguarding
  • Equal opportunities
  • Appeals
  • Reasonable adjustments and special considerations
  • Malpractice
  • Complaints
  • Customer service
  • Conflicts of interest
  • Internal moderation policy

You will also need to confirm that you have a process in place to accurately track and store assessment decisions for all of your learners.

How big does an audience need to be?

At Entry Levels 2 and 3, some assessment criteria ask for the learner to perform to a live audience as part of a group. For the purpose of these qualifications an audience can be one or more person, so performances can take place with just the tutor as the audience. However, to make these qualifications as relevant and engaging as possible for learners we encourage performances to take place in front of larger audiences where possible.

Group Performance Documentation

Please download the syllabus specification for Group Performance Music: Entry Level...

Group Performance Syllabus – Music: Entry Level

Digital Assessment Filming Guidance

Group Performance: Digital Assessment Filming Guidance

Dates & Fees

How do I enter?

Candidates are assessed via internal teacher assessment. Get in touch with our teams for certification information - business@rslawards.com -