Jump to content


Our Percussion syllabus offers the choice and flexibility to allow candidates to play to their strengths, enabling them to gain recognition for their own unique skills as performers.

Specifications for aural tests and improvisation tests are changing for all instruments. The changes will apply to all exams taken from 1 January 2017 onwards.

Full requirements for the new tests, as well as information about sample materials, will be available on the website in June 2016.

Please note that there is no overlap for supporting tests, and the current aural tests and improvisation tests cannot be offered after 31 December 2016.



Percussion syllabus 2014-2016

The 2014-2016 Percussion syllabus contains full details of grade exams in Drum Kit, Tuned Percussion, Snare Drum, Timpani and Orchestral Percussion.

Download the 2014-2016 Percussion syllabus (Initial-Grade 8) (PDF, 522KB)



Candidates should ensure that they are using the first impression of the 2014-2016 Percussion syllabus, September 2013.


The 2017-2019 percussion syllabus will be available in June.


You should read the syllabus requirements carefully before your exam. If you do not meet all the relevant requirements, the examiner may refer your exam result to Trinity’s London office for review and marks may be deducted. Please see the Information and Regulations for more information.


Syllabus support

A range of support resources are available on our online learning platform.

Further information

Full details of entry procedures and exam regulations can be found in our Information & Regulations booklet (PDF, 486KB)

Supporting publications

A range of publications are available to support candidates with preparing for our percussion exams. Percussion Exam Pieces & Studies books are available for Snare Drum (Grades 1-5) and Snare Drum (Grades 6-8), Timpani (Grades 1-5), and Tuned Percussion (Grades 1-5).

Tuned Percussion Scales & Arpeggios book (Grades 1-8) is also available.

Percussion and additional drum kit sight reading examples can be obtained from www.sightreadingcentral.co.uk.

Drum Kit publications

The Drum Kit Exam Pieces & Studies series contains everything a drummer needs to prepare for the performance and technical work components of our Drum Kit exams.

Introducing Drum Kit (book and CD) is an introduction to learning Drum Kit and contains playalongs, solos and duets suitable for individual practice, lessons and performance.

Our Sound at Sight books contain sight reading pieces for Drum Kit and are available in two books – Book 1 (Grades 1-4) and Book Two (Grades 5-8).

Our Unpitched Aural: Specimen tests for Drum Kit book contains sample tests for the Unpitched Aural section of our exams.

Additional Drum Kit resources

Audio samples of the pieces in our Drum Kit Exam Pieces & Studies series are available to listen to:

Trinity Drum Kit Audio Samples Book 1
Trinity Drum Kit Audio Samples Book 2
Trinity Drum Kit Audio Samples Book 3
Trinity Drum Kit Audio Samples Book 4

Free downloadable guidance for Improvisation and Musical Knowledge can be found on our supporting tests page.

Unpitched Aural

An extra resource is available for teachers or candidates preparing for the Unpitched Aural Supporting Test: recordings of the piano part to Part 4 of the Playalong test are available and can be used in conjunction with our Unpitched Aural book,  You can also download MP3s of the tracks.

Enter for an exam

To enter for an exam, download an entry form and send it with the full fee to your local representative. Find out more and enter for an exam

Register your interest

To be kept up to date with news about our syllabuses, publications and professional development programmes, as well as competitions and offers, register your interest.

Back to top