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Summer exams

Preferred week

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#1 maggiemay

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Posted 24 May 2019 - 11:57

Has anyone else had their ‘preferred week’ altered by the system before the issue of appointments?

Having requested week 2 at a local centre, I logged on a short while ago to see if my appointments were online.

Only to find that my entry now states ‘preferred week - week 4.
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#2 Latin pianist

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Posted 24 May 2019 - 13:53

I'm glad you mentioned this, Maggie. I've just looked and not only has mine been changed from week 5 to 6 , it's also been changed from the small market town centre nearby to the big city further away. I'm not sure whether to try to ring abrsm now or to wait for the appointment. I know my student won't want to travel there.
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#3 maggiemay

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Posted 24 May 2019 - 14:07

I’m also undecided whether to challenge it or just wait and see.

I also think my ‘no Saturdays’ has been altered. I had checked as per the Board’s published appointments timetable, expecting week 2 exams to be online between now and early next week, otherwise I wouldn’t have looked again at my entry.

I don’t think the centre had been changed - I’d be more bothered by that, and hope you can sort it out, LP.
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#4 Latin pianist

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Posted 24 May 2019 - 14:18

I've just rung and amazingly got through fairly quickly. The centre I'd asked for is not holding a session even though it was clearly in the list, so my candidate had been moved. The lady I spoke to said all appointments would be sent out next week so I could then try to move it. I know of 2 local Special Visits so could probably enter her there if I got permission from the organiser. Have moved people from public sessions to private ones before. But all added hassle for me. Thanks, Maggie, as I would have been horrified when the appointment arrived.
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#5 Sautillé

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Posted 24 May 2019 - 20:21

This is ridiculous! And it just keeps on happening..... who on earth would ‘offer’ an exam opportunity that doesn’t exist?? AB need to sort their entry system, this is absolutely disgraceful behaviour.
I do hope you both get it sorted - but what a ridiculous load of aggro and stress....
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#6 ma non troppo

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Posted 24 May 2019 - 22:26

So tired of this kind of thing. It no longer surprises me.
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#7 zwhe

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Posted 25 May 2019 - 07:32

I really don't understand why they can't publish a list of their provisional bookings for each centre. They can't possibly have exams every week at every centre in the country. Everybody understands that the final dates may change, but it would be really helpful when entering to know that, for example the nearest centre is only the first week, but the one a few miles further is the third week. Trinity do this. This time is the first time that my exams are outside of the published dates (a week later - they must have had more entries than they expected), but I have known the date and times since the day I booked. I am still waiting for AB which could be very soon, or mid-July. This is hardly helpful for children, as they get bored of pieces they can play and sometimes go backwards, not to mention the fact parents work and accompanists have other people to play for! I have several students who would prefer to do AB exams, but can't because of their booking system.


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#8 Hedgehog

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Posted 25 May 2019 - 21:25

Is it really that we have had our weeks changed, or simply that AB treat the whole summer exam period as one big session, so it starts with Scotland in week 1 and "our" English week one is therefore week 3?


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#9 maggiemay

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Posted 26 May 2019 - 09:27

That’s a good question, Hedgehog. I guess we may find out in the coming week when the next lot of appointments come out.
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#10 violin star

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Posted 28 May 2019 - 10:20

It is shocking they've altered the week/centre without bothering to tell you MaggieMay.  I don't think the current booking system is fit for purpose and there is an arrogance to the whole "we'll tell you the date when we're ready" set up. 

 

Teachers, candidates and parents are all busy and in my experience parents are more stressed and demanding than even 10 years ago.

We need to know the date of exams much, much further in advance.   (I am accompanying 8 of my students for summer exams and having to delay booking a flight in case ABRSM decide to schedule the exams 2 weeks earlier than I requested).  

 

 I have been loyal to ABRSM for many years but unless they bring their booking system into the 21st century very soon all my students will be doing Trinity exams.   


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#11 Hedgehog

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Posted 28 May 2019 - 10:36

I have just received my exam notification for the 1st day of the "1st" week (ie the first week in England/Wales) so I think the board must be taking the exam session as a whole, and the English 1st week is in fact the 3rd week of the exam session over the whole of the UK.


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#12 maggiemay

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Posted 28 May 2019 - 13:35

Thanks, Hedgehog, and others who’ve commented. I will report back when I know!

(I do hope that first day of the first week is what you were hoping for!)
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#13 Latin pianist

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Posted 28 May 2019 - 13:53

Well my appointment has now arrived and it's on a Saturday in a city. To be fair I hadn't specified no Saturdays as the centre I'd asked for is someone's home and it's never been on a Saturday. So now I've got to see what my student wants to do.Maybe this will be ok and if not, I know of 2 local special visits so can move it.Still feeling annoyed though.
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#14 Dr. Rogers

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Posted 28 May 2019 - 14:25

If I may mention a related complaint:

 

This is 2019.

 

Here in the States, we still have to register for exams by mail: fill out the forms, including one with credit card numbers if paying by card, and mail it in to the local representative.  I'm lucky to be dealing with an overall competent and conscientious local rep, but SURELY the ABRSM could enable at least some limited form of online registration here in the States.

 

Again, this is 2019, but other than the printing out the forms myself and the ability to use credit cards, the registration system might as well be in 1819.

 

To make matters worse, our postal service is notoriously unreliable, with mail and parcels routinely misdelivered or outright lost (though this may be a local problem in central Texas).

 

I don't intend to hijack this thread, just wanted to whinge a little...


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#15 Hedgehog

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Posted 28 May 2019 - 18:54

And my week "2" request has materialised too!


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