Assessment Report

Level 1 Music 2021

Standards 91093  91094

Part A: Commentary

There are two external achievement standards in this examination. Successful candidates demonstrated understanding of the elements of music and a range of musical features. They were able to confidently apply their knowledge of music conventions. They were able to make clear references to the scores they were working with providing supporting evidence.

Of some concern is the dramatic increase in the number of papers completed entirely in pencil (20-30%). This removes the possibility of reconsideration for students.

The use of the resources on the Music subject page on the NZQA website is encouraged. These include the Achievement Standards, the Assessment Specifications, Aural Skills, and Conventions outlines, as well as previous examination papers and assessment schedules.

Part B: Report on standards

91093:  Demonstrate aural and theoretical skills through transcription

Examinations

This examination included five question parts of which candidates were required to respond to all five. Parts (a) and (b) required candidates to aurally identify musical features. The questions covered the requirements of the 2021 assessment specifications which covered “identification of common musical features such as instruments and / or voice types, tempo indications, time signatures, articulation, and dynamic markings.” These questions required the candidate to aurally identify musical features and demonstrate their understanding by notating the features on a given score using appropriate musical symbols.

Part (c) required candidates to aurally identify and transcribe rhythmic patterns and phrases. The question covered the requirements of the 2021 assessment specifications which was to transcribe the rhythm of a percussion line. Candidates had to aurally identify rhythmic phrases and patterns and transcribe the patterns using standard music notation on a given score.

Part (d) required candidates to aurally identify and transcribe chords and cadences. The question covered the requirements of the 2021 assessment specifications which was to identify chords using Roman numerals or jazz / rock notation. The question required the candidate to aurally identify chords and cadences and transcribe the patterns using roman numerals or jazz / rock notation on a given score.

Part (e) required candidates to aurally identify and transcribe melodic contours and phrases. The question covered the requirements of the 2021 assessment specifications which was to transcribe the pitch of a melodic line. The question required the candidate to aurally identify the contour of melodic phrases and transcribe the patterns using standard music notation on a given score.

Grade awarding

Candidates who were awarded Achievement commonly:

  • identified a woodwind instrument (e.g. flute) and an accurate tempo marking
  • identified all the boxed dynamics but did not attempt cresc /dim.
  • identified staccato markings and one slur, but fewer than six in total
  • identified simple rhythmic patterns
  • identified four or five chords randomly scattered through the extract
  • identified the first contour and the contours of phrase two.

Candidates whose work was assessed as Not Achieved commonly:

  • identified the instrument as brass
  • identified appropriate dynamics OR confused the boxes for Extract One Section A for articulation or chords
  • did not attempt to identify articulation
  • did not attempt to identify tempo changes
  • made errors throughout all three sections
  • identified only one or two chords accurately in no particular order
  • identified one or two contours.

Candidates who were awarded Achievement with Merit commonly:

  • identified both instrument and tempo markings accurately
  • identified all boxed dynamics accurately and included two changes of dynamic but beginning too early
  • identified all the staccato marks and one or two appropriate slurs, but did not identify any accents
  • identified one tempo change but with an inappropriate word and did not include a pause
  • identified phrases in Section A with no errors, and one in Section B and the first in Section C with two errors.
  • identified a pair of chords in of three phrases but did not accurately identify chords in two cadences
  • identified two of the first, third, or fourth phrases with errors.

Candidates who were awarded Achievement with Excellence commonly:

  • identified all boxed dynamics and marked accurate cresc /dim. and hairpins
  • identified at least one accent and one accurate slur plus all the staccato marks
  • identified one of the tempo changes, used an appropriate term and marked the pause
  • identified four phrases accurately and one or two more with errors
  • identified three chord phrases with two errors, and two cadences
  • identified the first third and fourth phrases accurately, or within the tolerance of errors.

 


91094:  Demonstrate knowledge of conventions in music scores

Examinations

This examination included eight question parts of which candidates were required to respond to all eight.

Part (a) required candidates to demonstrate knowledge of conventions used in music scores. The question covered the requirements of the 2021 assessment specifications which included form and structure. The question required the candidate to identify sections of a song by reading a lead sheet. Their answers should have been supported with evidence from the lead sheet.

Part (b) required candidates to demonstrate knowledge of conventions used in music scores. The question covered the requirements of the 2021 assessment specifications which included pitch. The question required the candidate to transcribe and identify given intervals.

Part (c) required candidates to demonstrate knowledge of conventions used in music scores. The question covered the requirements of the 2021 assessment specifications which included pitch. The question required the candidate transpose a given melody and chord progression up a given interval, which included identifying and notating the new key signature.

Part (d) required candidates to demonstrate knowledge of conventions used in music scores. The question covered the requirements of the 2021 assessment specifications which included pitch. The question required the candidate to transcribe given chords.

Part (e) required candidates to demonstrate knowledge of conventions used in music scores. The question covered the requirements of the 2021 assessment specifications which included rhythm, compositional devices, terms, and signs. The question required the candidate to identify examples of staccato, repetition, syncopation, vocal tenor clef, and a slur on a given score as well as explain the effect of these features.

Part (f) required candidates to demonstrate knowledge of conventions used in music scores. The question covered the requirements of the 2021 assessment specifications which included texture. The question required the candidate to identify the opening texture of a given piece of music and discuss how the texture changes  giving evidence from the score to support their answers.

Part (g) required candidates to demonstrate knowledge of conventions used in music scores. The question covered the requirements of the 2021 assessment specifications which included rhythm. The question required the candidate to identify initial rhythmic feels of the piece and discuss how the feel changes giving evidence from the score to support their answers.

Part (h) required candidates to demonstrate knowledge of conventions used in music scores. The question covered the requirements of the 2021 assessment specifications which included harmony. The question required the candidate to identify given chords from given notes and write the chords using jazz / rock notation and give a roman numeral analysis for each chord.

Observations

Reference to the scores (including bar numbers and instrument lines) is important to achieve at higher levels. Many candidates struggled to identify different types and changes in texture. Proof-reading answers is encouraged to help candidates ensure their answers are complete.

Grade awarding

Candidates who were awarded Achievement commonly:

  • showed good knowledge of basic concepts which allowed them to include key words in their answers to demonstrate their understanding
  • missed a single component that would move them to a higher grade
  • had an incorrect or missing key signature for the transposition question.

Candidates whose work was assessed as Not Achieved commonly:

  • didn't answer enough questions to be eligible for Achievement.
  • were only secure in a certain area of knowledge.

 Candidates who were awarded Achievement with Merit commonly:

  • demonstrated comprehensive knowledge but missed key information which impeded their ability to obtain the higher mark. For example, missing key signatures and not referring to the score in their answers.

 Candidates who were awarded Achievement with Excellence commonly:

  • demonstrated clear connections between knowledge and the extracts in the exam
  • attained an Excellence grade for the structure question and the transposition question
  • referenced the score with detail so it was obvious what instrument / part they were referring to
  • showed detailed understanding of which theoretical concept was asked of each question in order to include the required content in their response.

Music subject page

Previous years' reports

2020 (PDF, 222KB)

2019 (PDF, 231KB)

2018 (PDF, 96KB)

2017 (PDF, 45KB)

2016 (PDF, 214KB)

 
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