jlee22
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I'm in year 9 and have chosen music as one of my GCSE options, yet the more people I talk to, it's becoming increasingly apparent that it mightn't have been the best choice.
See, the thing is: I love music, I always have and I obviously would love to take the course, yet I lack experience. I know basic music theory and have been taking piano lessons for a literal week, yet my peers who are also taking this GCSE are all grade 4-5 in a couple of instruments and have been going at it since their childhood. Now, I'm a huge nerd/perfectionist and the thought of me taking this course just to slip behind or come out with a lousy grade because I made a bad decision sounds like the equivalent of hell to me, yet, like I said, I want to take GCSE music.
I've read multiple forums, all with mixed views. Some say a person at my stage shouldn't even entertain the thought if I'm aiming for a 9 (which I am), and others are telling people like me to go for it.

I'm stressing out, lol.
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Caz1234567
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I know that you have to do a project at GCSE music, for my year group it was to make a music video
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SiennaRose_03
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Hello! A-level music student here, I took music GCSE myself and came out with an 8 so I feel well equipped to give some advice, although in the end, it is your choice. It sounds to me like you don't have a solid understanding of what it means to study music academically yet, due to being fairly new to it, which is totally okay. I think where you would struggle is performance. For my exam board, the requirement level was grade 4, so you'd need to be grade 2 by this summer to feasibly meet the performance standards in two years time. Like you, I started the course with only very basic theory knowledge. However, I had an advantage with my performance skills, because if you are bad at one aspect, but talented in another, it brings your grade up drastically. In my case, I struggled with the written paper but I am a gifted performer and got 97% in my performance, which balanced that out. I would say if you are going to take it, prepare to struggle a bit and make sure you are motivated enough. In classes, you will probably be unable to answer questions that your peers could and might feel out of place - you'd have to do much more work just to understand what your classmates already understood. I'll be frank, for me, that was embarrassing. I think you could get a good grade if you took music. But a 9? Nearly impossible. Only 8% of GCSE music students got a 9 when I sat it in 2019. That's 8% of all of those people like your peers, who are grade 4 to 5 in multiple instruments. Unless you are a talented composer and haven't mentioned it, you will struggle. I only managed to pull an 8 because of my talent in performing. What is it you love about music? Composing? Listening to music? Do you have any university or career plans? I think you should have a longer think about this and research the course more.
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hormistonx
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(Original post by jlee22)
I'm in year 9 and have chosen music as one of my GCSE options, yet the more people I talk to, it's becoming increasingly apparent that it mightn't have been the best choice.
See, the thing is: I love music, I always have and I obviously would love to take the course, yet I lack experience. I know basic music theory and have been taking piano lessons for a literal week, yet my peers who are also taking this GCSE are all grade 4-5 in a couple of instruments and have been going at it since their childhood. Now, I'm a huge nerd/perfectionist and the thought of me taking this course just to slip behind or come out with a lousy grade because I made a bad decision sounds like the equivalent of hell to me, yet, like I said, I want to take GCSE music.
I've read multiple forums, all with mixed views. Some say a person at my stage shouldn't even entertain the thought if I'm aiming for a 9 (which I am), and others are telling people like me to go for it.

I'm stressing out, lol.
Hey! So I did GCSE Music in school, because it was my favourite lesson, I sing, knew basic music theory and had taken piano lessons in the past. It was stressful, because i wanted to do so well in it! A lot of tears were shed, I tell you! I don't do anything with that GCSE now, however I came out with an 8. I was going to go to college and doing music production, but I didn't play loads of instruments either! (I'm actually a dental nurse now xD)
The point is, if you think you will enjoy it, go for it! unless you have any dreams of being a scientist, and their are my important results that you think you're going to need.
I loved music, it was the only lesson i used to look forward too haha.
We had to compose 2 songs, a performance, and a theory exam.
I would recommend it, even though I've done nothing with it. You just need the motivation to stick at it or else you will fall behind >.<
Best of luck! Remember, GCSE's do not define you as a person, all you can do is try your best!xx
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HPx
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(Original post by jlee22)
I'm in year 9 and have chosen music as one of my GCSE options, yet the more people I talk to, it's becoming increasingly apparent that it mightn't have been the best choice.
See, the thing is: I love music, I always have and I obviously would love to take the course, yet I lack experience. I know basic music theory and have been taking piano lessons for a literal week, yet my peers who are also taking this GCSE are all grade 4-5 in a couple of instruments and have been going at it since their childhood. Now, I'm a huge nerd/perfectionist and the thought of me taking this course just to slip behind or come out with a lousy grade because I made a bad decision sounds like the equivalent of hell to me, yet, like I said, I want to take GCSE music.
I've read multiple forums, all with mixed views. Some say a person at my stage shouldn't even entertain the thought if I'm aiming for a 9 (which I am), and others are telling people like me to go for it.

I'm stressing out, lol.
Hi, I am also in year 9 and took music early and I am not joking when I say IT WAS THE WORST DECISION EVER! I hate music so much now. It has been so hard, stressful and not enjoyable at all. I honestly don't think I could do this with all the other subjects on top. Some of my sisters friends (who are in year 11) have said that they wish they never did it because it is so hard. I don't know if I'm just stupid or it is this hard for everyone. If you want to take it thats fine, but be careful because it is so stressful, difficult and I hate it so much. It probably doesn't help that my teachers are rubbish but it is so hard to remember everything and I am pretty surre I am going to fail it. If you do decide to take it I wish you the best of luck x
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ReadingMum
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The board my daughter sat, you could only get max marks in the performance with a grade 5 piece or higher. Anything lower than that and the max possible marks was reduced. She had to do a solo piece and a group one so you will need other people happy to perform with you. Then there was a composition and an exam around theory and also some pieces of music that had been studied along the way - a classical piece, one from a musical, a pop piece and a world music/jazzy piece.
She did get a 9 but she had grade 5 music theory at that point and did grade 8 in sax and piano the following year so she had a big advantage with maximum marks on the performances.
Everyone who wasn't that musically advanced in her GCSE class dropped out before the end. She didn't enjoy the course but it wasn't a challenge for her so it would have been crazy not to do it.
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Debs25
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I'm a music teacher and would say that if your objective is to get a 9 in music GCSE, you could very well be disappointed. The course is not the soft option that people think it is. As one poster has already said, it requires a broad set of skills and performance is a big part of the final mark. Piano, in particular, is a hard instrument to master and if you have the additional stress of taking several GCSEs, it may be difficult to get up to the standard required to get a good grade. If you are academically gifted, I'd suggest taking a different GCSE and keeping music as a hobby.
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jlee22
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Thanks for the replies everyone!

So, the responses all are kind of gravitating towards me not taking GCSE music. Understandable, and I too am starting to second guess it, but I really don't know what else to pick. My art teachers told me I would achieve a 9 if I took it, and everyone seems to want me to take it but I really don't want to. Even if I left school with a 9 in art, I wouldn't feel any sense of achievement as I just don't feel it's right or what I want to do. For reference, I'm taking History, Music, Computer Science and Spanish, along with the compulsory subjects (Maths, English Lang + Lit, Religious Studies and Sciences for me). The only one I can really alter is music, as it isn't one of the required subjects for an EBacc. I also forgot to mention I'm grade 2 drums, grade 1 piano and I like to sing, but I'm not great.
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hormistonx
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(Original post by jlee22)
Thanks for the replies everyone!

So, the responses all are kind of gravitating towards me not taking GCSE music. Understandable, and I too am starting to second guess it, but I really don't know what else to pick. My art teachers told me I would achieve a 9 if I took it, and everyone seems to want me to take it but I really don't want to. Even if I left school with a 9 in art, I wouldn't feel any sense of achievement as I just don't feel it's right or what I want to do. For reference, I'm taking History, Music, Computer Science and Spanish, along with the compulsory subjects (Maths, English Lang + Lit, Religious Studies and Sciences for me). The only one I can really alter is music, as it isn't one of the required subjects for an EBacc. I also forgot to mention I'm grade 2 drums, grade 1 piano and I like to sing, but I'm not great.
Its tricky 100%, but when i got my results, i was so proud of myself, and if you enjoy the subject, go for it!!
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