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Music 2 – Further advice for teachers and students

Stage 6 Music – HSC Assessments and Submitted Works – advice for teachers

Guidance to assist teachers advise and supervise students with submitted works is available at the following link on BOSTES website:

http://www.boardofstudies.nsw.edu.au/hsc_assessment_policies/hsc-assessments-works-advice-teachers.html

  • Music 2 – Core and Elective Performance – choice of piece/repertoire

    Information regarding the choice of repertoire for performance is available at the following links on BOSTES website:
    http://www.boardofstudies.nsw.edu.au/syllabus_hsc/pdf_doc/music-2-st6-syl-from2010.pdf
    Please refer to pages 11, 20, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27.

    http://www.boardofstudies.nsw.edu.au/syllabus_hsc/pdf_doc/music-2-assessment-reporting.pdf
    Please refer to pages 910.

    Teachers and students are advised:

    • a performance must be accompanied unless composed otherwise. Accompaniments can be live or pre-recorded. If pre-recorded the part of the candidate must be clearly displayed and must not be included on the recording.
    • the choice and suitability of repertoire should involve discussion between the student and the classroom teacher. The teacher has an understanding of topic choices as well as the musical requirements and interpretation of the marking guidelines for the HSC.
    • AMEB repertoire may be used but must address topic representation requirements. Students should seek advice from their classroom teacher to decide on best choices for HSC performance.
    • where dates apply to a topic area a student cannot perform a piece written outside the stated years. This requires the piece to have been originally composed in the time frame referred to. The original composition date also applies to arrangements. The selection of repertoire should be made carefully to ensure that it falls within the time frame indicated.
    • MANDATORY TOPIC HSC: Music in the last 25 years (Australian focus). The topic requires the study of repertoire that has been originally composed in the last 25 years. The original composition date also applies to arrangements. The topic provides the opportunity to investigate what else is happening in the world of music at the time including the different cultural contexts which influence contemporary music. The work does not have to be written by an Australian composer as the Australian focus refers to the study of the topic as a whole. When the repertoire chosen has not been written by an Australian composer the link to an Australian focus should be clear.
    • students can present two short pieces of repertoire by one composer as one performance. Students may for example combine 2 movements from a work, or 2 songs from the same song cycle. The usual topic representation and time requirements will apply.
  • Music 2 – Core and Elective Performance – solo and ensemble requirements

    Information regarding the solo and ensemble requirements for Performance is available at the following link on BOSTES website:
    http://www.boardofstudies.nsw.edu.au/syllabus_hsc/pdf_doc/music-2-assessment-reporting.pdf
    Please refer to page 10.

    Teachers and students are advised:

    • a solo work is where an instrument or voice is featured as distinct and takes the musical interest.
    • a solo work may be accompanied by one or more instruments.
    • an ensemble work is where the musical interest is shared among a group of parts that interact with each other.
    • an ensemble can consist of 2 or more instruments or voice.
    • the part performed by a student in an ensemble must be distinct and apparent for the markers to clearly hear the part of the student being examined.
    • the syllabus does not require the specific parts of the ensemble to be equal. It is important, however, to consider how the piece allows the student to demonstrate the outcomes related to performance.
  • Music 2 – Core and Elective Performance – maximum performance times

    Information regarding the maximum performance times for Core Performance and Elective Performance is available at the following link on BOSTES website:
    http://www.boardofstudies.nsw.edu.au/syllabus_hsc/pdf_doc/music-2-assessment-reporting.pdf
    Please refer to pages 910.

    Teachers and students are advised:

    • time limits cannot be combined or treated cumulatively. Each performance component has a discrete time limit. The time limit for Elective Performance is the combined time of the two pieces performed.
    • while there is no minimum time for performance it is important to note that students should select repertoire that allows them to demonstrate their full range of music capabilities to sufficiently demonstrate the performance criteria. An overly brief repertoire may restrict opportunities to do this.
    • it is necessary to adhere to time limits. Performances that do not meet course prescriptions for time limits are considered to be in breach of subject rules and are not able to achieve the same marks as those performances that work within the course requirements.
    • sympathetic edits are permitted to pieces chosen for performance to accommodate maximum performance time requirements. When editing for this purpose, teachers and students should consider preserving musical continuity and a sense of cohesion in the piece.
  • Music 2 – Core and Elective Performance and use of technology

    Information regarding performance in Music 2 and the use of technology is available at the following links on BOSTES website:
    http://www.boardofstudies.nsw.edu.au/syllabus_hsc/pdf_doc/music-2-st6-syl-from2010.pdf
    Please refer to pages 27–28.

    http://www.boardofstudies.nsw.edu.au/syllabus_hsc/pdf_doc/music-2-assessment-reporting.pdf
    Please refer to page 10.

    Teachers and students are advised:

    • electronic instruments may be used as solo instruments, as accompaniment or as part of an ensemble.
    • the use of technology should not delay the examination process – all sound checks and balances should be carried out before the exam begins.
    • new technologies (such as looping pedals and launch pad) are to be used for performance with no pre-programmed material or connectivity to the internet. Use of technology must be considered in the same way as any conventional instrument for performance.
    • should advice or clarification be required on the use of unusual or less conventional instruments,  new technologies or sound sources that they should contact the Inspector, Creative Arts at BOSTES.
    • the only people permitted in the room during a performance are those who are being examined or who are playing in the performance. A sound-mixing device can be used in the examination when it is operated by the candidate.
    • no click tracks can be used in performance. A click track may be used only as a lead-in to a performance.
    • technologies used should be seen as a musical instrument not as a device for programming. An electronic drum kit can be used as long as it is not pre-programmed.
  • Music 2 – Core and Elective Performance – HSC Examination

    Teachers and students are advised:

    • photocopied music is permitted as long as the usual copyright restrictions and regulations are observed.
    • students may use music during the examination – there is no marking criteria for or advantage to playing from memory.
    • a page turner can be used, but only for the performance required.
    • backing tracks can be used  in the examination. Backing tracks should be sympathetic to the style of music. The backing track should be of good quality and there should be a balance between the performer and the backing track that is suitable for the performance space. The part performed by the student must not be doubled on the backing track.
    • a teacher can be used as an accompanist. Accompanists are not marked as part of the performance.
    • where a student intends to use a mobile phone, iPad or laptop for backing tracks the students must advise HSC markers prior to their examination and demonstrate the device is in flight mode and the wifi turned off.
  • Music 2 – Core and Elective Performance – HSC Examination:
    use of mobile phones, iPads and laptops

    Teachers and students are advised the use of laptops and mobile phones is permitted in HSC Music performance exams provided the device is set on flight mode, wifi is turned off and the student can demonstrate this to the HSC markers.
    http://news.boardofstudies.nsw.edu.au/index.cfm/2015/4/17/Use-of-mobile-telephones-in-HSC-performance-examinations

  • Music 2 – Sight Singing

    Teachers and students are advised:

    • a number of sight singing pieces are developed for the Music 2 HSC examination. All have the same degree of difficulty.
    • notation is to be sung as presented. The piece may not be transposed to another key. The score is pitched to be accessible for all students.
    • The sight singing test may be performed in the given words or on any open vowel or sol-fa or solfege. Whistling the melody is not acceptable.
  • Music 2 – Core and Elective Composition

    Information regarding Core and Elective Composition is available at the following links on BOSTES website:
    http://www.boardofstudies.nsw.edu.au/syllabus_hsc/pdf_doc/music-2-st6-syl-from2010.pdf
    Please refer to pages 2021.

    http://www.boardofstudies.nsw.edu.au/syllabus_hsc/pdf_doc/music-2-assessment-reporting.pdf
    Please refer to page 11.

    Teachers and students are advised:

    • marking of the composition is based on both the written score and the recording.
    • the recording is used as a guide to the intentions of the composer and therefore the technical quality is not taken into consideration.
    • all details to realise the score must be included in the submitted manuscripts.
    • traditional and non-traditional notation is acceptable. If non-traditional notation is used a key should accompany the score.
    • schools must retain a copy of the score and the recording. This copy can be in an electronic format. It should be kept with the Composition Portfolio and be available if necessary during the HSC examination process. Authorship of the composition is validated through the Composition Portfolio.  
    • scores and manuscripts must be submitted to BOSTES via Schools Online
    • for instructions on creating PDFs with embedded sound files schools should refer to the Memos and Documents section of  Schools Online.
    • PDF files should be saved as [student number] – [name of score].
  • Music 2 – Musicology Elective – word count

    Information regarding Musicology and word count is available at the following link on BOSTES website:
    http://www.boardofstudies.nsw.edu.au/syllabus_hsc/pdf_doc/music-2-assessment-reporting.pdf
    Please refer to page 12.

    Teachers and student are advised:

    • bibliography, and/or discography, footnotes and/or end notes must be included but will not be counted in the word count.
    • while word limits do not apply to the use of bibliography, and/or discography, footnotes and/or end notes these should be used judiciously and not as a means to expand the exploration of the concept central to the work.
    • brief annotations and labelling of diagrams will not contribute to the word count.
    • each essay must include page numbers and a progressive word count every hundred words.
    • schools must retain a copy of the musicology essay. This copy can be in an electronic format. It should be kept with the Musicology Portfolio and be available if necessary during the HSC examination process. Authorship is validated through the Musicology Portfolio.
    • Musicology essays must be submitted to BOSTES electronically via Schools Online.
    • for instructions on creating PDFs with embedded sound files schools should refer to the Memos and Documents section of  Schools Online.
    • PDF files should be saved as [student number] – [name of essay].
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