Are there any world-wide known Music Certification tests that you can take to use in your resume: for example, to demonstrate basic musical abilities?

I used to work in IT, where it is very common for companies like Oracle and Zend to arrange that kind of certification for a programming language or framework.

  • 1
    You may want to search for the acronyms mentioned in the exam-grades tag I added, but in lack a of big responsible company this is strongly dependent on the country you live in.
    – guidot
    Dec 3, 2019 at 8:55
  • 2
    Speaking generally, just about every country will have music exam boards, so passing a grade on an instrument and putting 'ABRSM grade VI clarinet' for example would be recognisable anywhere, with a possible bit of reasearch by someone reading a c.v.
    – Tim
    Dec 3, 2019 at 16:13

5 Answers 5


There are systems of graded examinations in performance for most instruments, and for theory, designed to cover the stages from beginner to pre-college.

Here's a couple of 'classical' ones



and one for 'rock'


Those are UK-based. There are equivalents elsewhere. The next step is a diploma from a music conservatoire.

A few music software companies offer certification in their products. You can become an 'Avid Certified User' in several of their products, including Protools and Sibelius.


Steinberg (Cubase) have 'Certified Training'. I guess you get some sort of certificate after completing a course.



Music is such a big field that it isn't really possible to answer this.

There are organisations and colleges such as Berklee which have some international reputation, it can be helpful to have something from them.

But in many areas, the qualification is simply showing you can do what is needed. For instance, as a jazz musician you are likely to pick up work by showing you can play your **** off without actually being an ****.

Music is a field that is extremely results driven. Pieces of paper don't really make much difference when you are on stage. Being able to be there on time, looking the part, and playing well are the main thing. Even people who do study at conservatory will often acknowledge that the main benefit was contacts they made, rather than the actual qualification.


Adding to @danmcb answer: In some cases a college degree matters. E.g. in some countries Master in music is required to teach in a public school. A degree might be a plus when applying for other music related jobs.

But if the focus the job is music performance, a video showing you playing will be worth more than any paper. A degree is for sure worth mentioning, but bragging about it too much might actually make a bad impression.

Anything below academic level probably won't be worth much, except when you apply to study at the college.


Generally speaking, just about every country will have music exam boards, a lot of them world wide, like ABRSM. Most have been established for many years, and the standard at any particular grade should be just that - standard.

So, on a c.v., stating Grade VI clarinet ABRSM, Trinity, LCM, AMEB etc., should give a good clue to someone reading that c.v., possibly with a little homework.

Worth a look at IMEB - which it seems is the International Music Examination Board, and, as such, would have responsibility to align all boards.


Nothing completely world-wide, it seems.

I'm just a hobby musician, but before joining this stack I had never heard of the type of "grades" people seem to use to measure proficiency with musical instruments. I live in Sweden, and it doesn't seem to be a thing here. There are entry exams you need to pass to get into music schools and academies, of course, and there is collaboration between universities to standardise some tests, but nothing as organised as what I see people discuss here, and certainly not for children.

Just to be sure, I asked my girlfriend. Her parents are both professional musicians, and she's been playing the violin in various organised contexts since she was a kid. She majored in music in high school, continued at Folkhögskola(no idea how to translate..) and then spent 5 years at university to become a music teacher. A teacher should know about this, if anyone. She had never heard of anything remotely like the "grades" either.

There might be something that's fairly global, I don't know, but at least in one country it's not a thing.

  • There is nothing like this in the US either.
    – Peter
    Dec 18, 2020 at 13:27

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