Music Theory and History

Music Theory Lessons:

Theory Examinations are essential components of the prestigious Certificate Program of RCM Examinations.

The RCM Examinations graded theory system assesses essential tools in a student’s musical development. Candidates may begin theory examinations at any point in their practical music studies, but are encouraged to begin theoretical studies as early as possible.

Music Theory topics covered are:

  • Theory Rudiments
  • Harmony
  • Keyboard Harmony
  • Counterpoint
  • Analysis
  • Composition

Music History Lessons:

The study of music history allows students to develop a context for the sounds and symbols that already form the basis of their musical experience. Through the study of composer’s lives and musical styles, encounters with great works from the literature, and exposure to genres and terms that help to build a musical vocabulary, students become more musically literate and gain an increased awareness of music as a living art.

  • First Course: An Overview
  • Second Course: Middle Ages to Classical
  • Third Course: 19th Century to Present

Examination Requirements:

Certificate Program Overview:Internationally recognized certificates and diplomas are awarded for successful completion of each practical level and its co-requisites. Candidates may enter the Certificate Program at any level from Preparatory A to Level 10. Candidates must complete prerequisite examinations at least one session prior to attempting the ARCT in Piano Performance examination and any of Parts 1, 2, or 3 of the Intermediate Piano Pedagogy level and the Advanced Piano Pedagogy level.

Certificates Examinations Required
Preparatory A Preparatory A
Preparatory B Preparatory B
Level 1 Piano Level 1 Piano
Level 2 Piano Level 2 Piano
Level 3 Piano Level 3 Piano
Level 4 Piano Level 4 Piano
Level 5 Piano Level 5 Piano; Level 5 Theory
Level 6 Piano Level 6 Piano; Level 6 Theory
Level 7 Piano Level 7 Piano; Level 7 Theory
Level 8 Piano Level 8 Piano; Level 8 Theory
Level 9 Piano Level 9 Piano; Level 9 Harmony or Level 9 Keyboard Harmony; Level 9 History
Level 10 Piano Level 10 Piano; Level 10 Harmony and Counterpoint or Level 10 Keyboard Harmony; Level 10 History
Elementary Piano Pedagogy Elementary Piano Pedagogy Parts 1, 2, and 3
Intermediate Piano Pedagogy Intermediate Piano Pedagogy Parts 1, 2, and 3
Diplomas Examinations Required
ARCT in Piano Performance ARCT Piano Performance; ARCT Harmony and Counterpoint or ARCT Keyboard Harmony; ARCT Analysis; ARCT History
ARCT in Piano Pedagogy Advanced Piano Pedagogy Parts 1, 2, and 3; ARCT Harmony and Counterpoint or ARCT Keyboard Harmony; ARCT Analysis; ARCT History

Theory Examinations are essential tools for musical development

  • Candidates are encouraged to begin theoretical studies as early as possible.
  • Beginning at Level 5, candidates must complete the required theory examinations inorder to receive Practical Examination Certificates.

Classification of Marks:

First Class Honors with Distinction 90-100
First Class Honors 80-89
Honors 70-79
Pass (Levels 1 to 10) 60
Pass (ARCT in Piano Performance) 70
Pass (ARCT in Piano Pedagogy) 70 percent in each section

Ocean Park Piano offers Music Theory and History classes in White Rock / South Surrey, BC. To discuss your child’s placement and goals in the study of music, please contact Helga Murray.

To register your child for a RCM Examination, the first step is to go to the RCM website and sign up for an account. Start here

Piano, Harmony, Theory, Counterpoint, and Royal Conservatory of Music Exam Prep in South Surrey, BC