At ABRSM, we support the career-long professional development of music teachers through our innovative courses and online learning resources.

We can offer UK schools, music hubs and services a wide-ranging suite of INSET presentations, all delivered by our network of experienced examiners and presenters. We have topics suitable for both instrumental and classroom music teachers.

The full list of presentations is below – each session explores new repertoire, resources and teaching ideas, packed with useful ideas to take back into teaching. They are inspirational, practical and above all musical!

We can accommodate both morning and afternoon sessions. You can book a single, 90-minute session, or book a half-day, which includes two 90-minute presentations and a 30-minute interactive session, such as a demo of our digital resources or a Q&A with the examiner.

Most of our sessions can be delivered online if preferred. Please check the details of the session you’re interested in below and let us know when you book whether you’d prefer face to face or online delivery.

We are always keen to support visits that bring together a wide and diverse community of practising musicians and teachers – if you can guarantee a minimum of 100 delegates, we’ll waive the presentation fee. This could involve coming together with local schools or hubs/services in your area.

“Both presenters delivered superb presentations which were interesting and inspiring and I hope much can now be used in our VMT’s daily teaching.”
The Schools at Somerhill

“I got lots of practical ideas to help my teaching. The presenter was friendly and relaxed.”
City of Edinburgh Instrumental Music Service

“Very straightforward and easy to book”
Bedford Music Cooperative


INSET sessions

Available as face to face or online delivery

Understanding the way ABRSM exams are assessed will support the entire exam journey for you and your pupil, from preparation right through to the exam itself, and beyond to getting the most from the mark form.

You'll gain helpful insights into the aspects of musical performance that you and your pupils need to consider to work effectively towards an ABRSM exam. The session will also explain the principles behind the exam structure and how it works and, using recorded examples, how examiners apply the ABRSM marking criteria to assess each section of the exam. 

You will come away with a clear understanding of how the mark form comments are intended to help support and guide your pupils’ future musical development.

*This session can be targeted to ABRSM G1-8 Practical exams, Jazz exams, Singing for Musical Theatre or Performance Diplomas upon request.

Available as face to face or online delivery

Motivation and progression are two vital ingredients of successful learning. We will look at the challenges of maintaining both motivation and progression, and positive ways to invigorate one in order to turbo-charge the other!

Is assessment only about exams? And are exams only about assessment? By exploring the links between motivation, attainment, assessment and progression, this session explores how musical assessment can be used in a helpful and holistic way for all concerned – one that supports and guides progression in terms of the process itself and the outcome.

Available as face to face only

In this session we will share lesson ideas and activities to inspire your pupils’ love of music and learning, helping them to gain an understanding of the core elements of music: pitch, time, tone, shape and performance. These key ingredients are the skills that ABRSM examiners assess, although they apply to any music learning context, within or outside the exam. This is a hands-on, practical session that can be designed around 1:1 teaching, small or large groups, or class music lessons.

Available as face to face or online delivery

Discover ABRSM’s new exam repertoire in a session of practical demonstrations and discussions which explore a variety of musical approaches to teaching the music set for Grades 1–8.

This session will highlight themes and pathways that help to enable and sustain progression. We’ll also look at imaginative ways to focus your students’ exam preparation around the aspects of musical performance that examiners assess and helps them to engage with the music with enthusiasm and confidence.

Available as face to face or online delivery

Jazz is an increasingly popular style for learners, and although many teachers are enthusiastic about the style, not everyone feels confident about delivering jazz content in lessons.

This session helps you to understand the important elements in the music, and provides ideas that you can take away and work on to feel more comfortable yourself as well as to use as teaching tools for your students.

Available as face to face or online delivery

This session explores the vital relationship between knowledge, understanding and the practical and creative skill.

Highlighting the importance of music theory, this session uses a range of practical ways to demonstrate some of the intricate, inextricable connections between practical control and mental awareness, and between musical literacy and articulacy, showing how musical knowledge and understanding lies at the heart of successful music-making.

Available as face to face or online delivery

Classical 100 is our free resource for primary schools that features 100 pieces of classical music in a dynamic list, ranging from Bach to Bernstein and Handel to Haydn. You can sort the music by mood, instrument, tempo and historical period, or in any other way that suits you.

Introduce your pupils to a wide range of classical music and develop their musical understanding through flexible activities. Listen, learn and explore all 100 pieces, each of which come with a challenge designed to help support musical learning. The challenges are fun and flexible enough to use in a number of ways – from short starter activities to longer sessions spanning several hours. They're designed to support all teachers, with or without musical expertise.  

"The 100 pieces are a perfect stimulus for storytelling, drama and dance, with lots of ideas for music-making activities. The resource is ideal for introducing pupils to the joy of classical music, where pupils can improve their aural skills in identifying a range of orchestral instruments along with interpreting the emotions of the music while developing concentration in listening skills."

Kate Picken, Music Teacher and Youth Music Development Officer in Dumfries & Galloway Council

Available as face to face or online delivery

Wherever you are in the world, join us for an in-depth introduction to ABRSM’s Performance Grades.

This session will provide you with helpful insights and understanding of this recent addition to ABRSM’s music exam offer. Performance Grades provide exciting new flexibility and accessibility in terms of where, when and how you take your exam.

They provide an opportunity for students to put together their own personal programme of music to perform and video-record, including one free-choice repertoire item. These exams now sit alongside ABRSM’s familiar Practical Grades, providing equal recognition, reliability and quality of feedback from the same ABRSM examiner team.

During the session, we will explain the rationale behind these assessments, how ABRSM examiners mark Performance Grades and how this different kind of exam can benefit a student as part of their musical learning journey.

There will also be a chance to ask questions at the end of the presentation.

Available as face to face or online delivery

This session will focus on our performance-only diploma, the ARSM.

It covers what’s involved in an ARSM exam, who the exam is for and its benefits for students, the relationship between Grade 8 and ARSM, Top tips for creating a programme, and how the marking criteria works in practice. There will also be a chance to ask questions.

Available as face to face or online delivery

This session will provide you with helpful insights and understanding of ABRSM’s exam offer for musical theatre singers; our face-to-face Practical Grade exams and digital Performance Grade exams. Our new Performance Grade exams provide equal recognition, reliability and quality feedback from the same ABRSM examiner team as our longstanding Practical Grade exams.

During the webinar, we will explain the rationale behind these assessments, how ABRSM examiners mark exams and how exams can benefit a student as part of their musical learning journey.

There will also be a chance to ask questions.

Classroom 200 is a free online resource for music teachers working with learners up to the age of 14. In this session, we will unpack the resource, demonstrating how it can be used creatively and simply in the classroom and also in instrumental or vocal lessons. Performing & singing, listening and composing are taken in turn, and we will discover how skills are developed from through primary and secondary school using Classroom 200, by directly relating it to your curriculum. By the end of this session you will be able to confidently use Classroom 200 in your music making, and you will leave the session with many practical examples of how it supports children to progress with their music making. Register for the resource in advance at Please bring your instruments!

We regularly update our INSET offer, so please check this page for details of new sessions. Still don’t see a presentation that meets your needs? We are often able to tailor sessions bespoke for your teachers – recently, this has included sessions around our jazz exams, and on new syllabus repertoire. Please get in touch to discuss your needs. 

These INSET presentations are available to all UK schools, music hubs and services. If you are a private organisation or based outside the UK and you are looking for CPD from ABRSM, please get in touch tell us more about your needs and we will be happy to talk to you. 

Please note: No photography or filming is permitted by attendees at these events.


Bookings must be requested at least 30 days before the INSET date. Periods of high demand are April, September and January.

If you have any queries regarding INSET, email [email protected].

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