I just did an AMEB music theory exam online, since it is a practice exam it doesn't get marked (music theory from grade 4 and up is manually marked, instead of marked by a computer). One of the questions includes melody writing (example below). Does anyone know how AMEB marks melody writing? What are the criteria that gets full marks? And what would you mark the one below (out of 10)?

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  • 'It doesn't get marked' . Then how do you know how you've done?
    – Tim
    Nov 28, 2017 at 8:30
  • @Tim Sorry, bad wording. It is a practice exam so it doesn't get marked. I've edited the question.
    – aimorris
    Nov 28, 2017 at 8:53

2 Answers 2


Don't know how that board would mark - but a couple of things. The rhythm needs to be a little more varied at that level - all quavers is grade II/III. And technically, any anacrucis needs to be included in the number of beats in the last bar. Imagine looping round. So, a quaver rest is a better fit. Key sig., starting on a 5, ending on 1 is sound.


Do you have to type the notes into their supplied rudimentary notation program? No point in criticising score design then - though perhaps you could have started the second phrase mark on the right note!

Personally I find the tritone leap, C# to G, on 'When fan-' pleasantly piquant. But I'm afraid the 'rule' is to avoid diminished or augmented intervals.

Yes, they'll probably count varied rhythms as a plus. I like the 'dreamy' straight 8s at the beginning. Perhaps a dotted rhythm for 'fancies?'

You may find this link useful: https://www.mymusictheory.com/for-students/grade-5/58-12-composing-a-melody-general-tips

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