The two links below are for the OFFICIAL RAD EXAM Schedule* for each location:
* The exam schedule is set by the Royal Academy, and not Rachel’s Ballet. Exam dates or times can not be changed. Please note your dancer’s exam time may require release from school. We apologize for this, and appreciate your support for this important day we have been preparing for all year!
Also please read each section below for more information about preparing for exams.
RAD offers not just one, but three different types of examinations. All of the exam options are to accommodate growing bodies and children, at all stages. There is no “wrong” exam but simple variations dependent on the stage the dancer is at when entered. Regardless of which exam is selected, everyone is included and will be working to their fullest potential.
(Please note that no parents are allowed to observe or be present in the room for the examinations.)
There are three formats of examinations, two of which the same syllabus is demonstrated:
(1) Class awards
A teacher accompanies the group of students into a Class Award for the extra assurance and support. Students are required to perform a shorter content list than the examination (though all content areas will be covered in class) and the marking feedback is more generalized. Teachers are very experienced and will enter students for Class Awards for a variety of reasons- but always ultimately for the benefit of the child having a positive experience. Pre-School Levels and Pre-Primary are all Class Awards, and Grades 1-5 can be taken as class awards.
Candidates are assessed by a RAD examiner through observation of the performance of all the exercises and a dance. The standard of achievement is not measured in specific categories indicating levels of success but, instead, all students who achieve at least “occasionally” in each component are awarded an assessment report, certificate and medal. A teacher will be in the examination room conducting the examination with the students in the presence of the examiner.
(2) Graded Examinations (Primary, Grades 1-8, Vocational)
Candidates must meet criteria set in the relevant section of the standards prospectus. All candidates will pass an examination if the required standard has been attained. If successful, the examiner will award one of three pass classifications based on their performance on the day, in accordance with the established criteria. The marks awarded by the examiner will indicate to students, teachers, and parents, the strengths of the candidate’s performance and the areas that require improvement. Successful candidates will receive a result form, a certificate, and a medal. The examiner conducts the examination with students in groups and a teacher will not be in the room with students.
(3) Solo Performance Awards (Grades 1-5)
Candidates must meet criteria set in the relevant section of the standards prospectus. All candidates will pass an examination if the required standard has been attained. If successful, the examiner will award one of three pass classifications based on their performance on the day, in accordance with the established criteria. The marks awarded by the examiner will indicate to students, teachers and parents, the strengths of the candidate’s performance and the areas that require improvement. Successful candidates will receive a result form, a certificate, and medal. The examiner conducts the examination with students and a teacher will not be in the room with students. Three dances are performed as a solo.
Candidates are assessed through the performance of the entire class aware content on several criteria. The component marks are awarded through the assessment of related elements, as appropriate to each assessment area, which contributes to the skill and ability of the dancer, i.e. co-ordination, control, line, spatial awareness and dynamic values, and where applicable, the specific studies of pointe work for females and allegro for males. All these elements require a sound classical technique incorporating correct posture, weight placement and use of turnout.
RAD Ballet exams are the hardest in their field and as such are extremely highly respected and very difficult to pass. We are very proud of our students for succeeding in these challenging and demanding exams, however, some children expect unachievable results. There is huge pressure to always “be the best”, but the RAD’s mark-scheme has been created to actually allow for all achievements to be recognized. As such, the RAD examiners are rightly tough which is integral to the respect shown to them and their exams; they don’t give “Distinctions for all”. Merits and Passes are wonderful achievements in themselves and must be celebrated.
Please CLICK HERE to learn more about RAD results explained in detail.
This is an exam rehearsal for all of the students in each grade level. It is important for students to practice their work in the studio where they will take the exam. Parents are invited to observe, and see the progress the students have made. Please be sure to arrive 15 minutes prior to your mock exam time, so that we can seat you, and keep to the schedule. Late arrivals are very disruptive on this occasion, and your child may miss instruction of how to enter the studio on exam day. Students should be groomed as for the exam, and have all of the components of their uniform. Please be sure that you have the correct location, date and time for your dancer. If you have any doubt, check with your teacher.
The exam schedule is set by the Royal Academy of Dance, and no changes can be made. Our school has 5 days of examinations, and this means that some students may have to miss a partial day of school. Please explain to your child’s teacher that they are participating in an educational experience. Teachers will be proud of the efforts and accomplishments of your dancer to prepare for this event. There are no regular classes held during the exam period.