CDMT Validated Awarding Organisations

CDMT, Council for Dance Drama and Musical Theatre, Validated Awarding Organisations logoInstitutional Members

CDMT validates many of the world's leading awarding organisations offering performing arts qualifications. Some of these awarding organisations are also recognised by the Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation (Ofqual) and have their provision included on the Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF) in England. The RQF is further mapped to the European Qualifications Framework (EQF) which aims to improve the understanding and portability of qualifications across Europe.


Qualifications are offered by Awarding Organisations. They provide evidence of achievement at a specified level of attainment in a chosen subject, enabling candidates to either progress further within the same discipline or to gain additional knowledge, skills and understanding for the purposes of personal growth and learning. All qualifications are published in the format of a syllabus or specification which contains details of the outcomes, assessment methods and criteria against which candidates' levels of attainment are measured.

Teaching Qualifications

There are several routes into dance teaching, depending on the sector in which you intend to work. These are outlined below.

Collaboration across Music, Drama & Dance Grades

CDMT works with its validated members offering grades in dance and musical theatre, and collaborative bodies offering grades in music and drama to:

  • provide an authoritative source of information for government agencies when dealing with issues of recognition, regulation and accreditation across the performing arts
  • promote the benefits of graded examinations to the public and raise their status within the UK and internationally
  • ensure the continued integrity of assessment methods and the reliability of standards across all disciplines.

Graded Exams: The Definitive Guide & Website

The booklet Graded Exams: The Definitive Guide is produced by CDMT in association with twenty Awarding Organisations offering graded examinations in the arts. It is also supported by an accompanying website Graded Exams.

The booklet and website describe the history, distinctiveness and purpose of graded examinations, particularly how they contribute to the development of performing artists of all ages and ability - encompassing dance, music, drama and musical theatre - across the world.

It draws on the research and academic practices of twenty Awarding Organisations, all of which are committed and passionate about promoting progressive mastery in a range of performance disciplines. These organisations offer rigorous assessments, based on the well-known internationally acknowledged benchmarks that form ‘the Grades’.

Today, graded examinations are available in over ninety countries and attract more than a million candidates annually. We hope that you enjoy this booklet which explores why the Grades have become one of the world’s most popular assessments in the performing arts.

An electronic copy is available here.