Tap Exam Information

Tap Exam Information

A useful guide for parents and tap exam candidates with all you need to know about ISTD Tap exams.

Exam entry

Your class teacher needs to decide when each child is ready to sit their graded exam; the tap syllabus is very challenging and extra time spent at any level is beneficial. Teachers try as much as possible to keep peer groups together but this is not always possible. When your child is ready for their exam, the class teacher will give them a permission slip which must be signed and returned with payment before the given closing date. Please take time to read the form as it indicates the dates of the exam session and highlights the fact that exams can be scheduled during school hours.

The exact day, time and venue of your examination will be provided as soon as it is confirmed by Headquarters if it has not already been indicated. The dates and times are set by the ISTD Headquarters and cannot be altered. Download or view a copy of our exam timetable for NOVEMBER 2019

Primary Grade Class Test... The first step!

This is the first exam for our graded tap students. They enter the exam studio with their teacher who is present throughout and who conducts the exam. The exam is marked and graded by the examiner.

Why attend extra classes?

With the exception of the Primary Class Test, children enter their examination without their class teacher. We recommend that candidates attend as many extra classes as possible in preparation for their exam to both improve their memory and confidence and to reinforce technique so that they can perform to the best of their ability on the day. Children who regularly attend more than one class a week progress quicker, gain higher marks and enjoy the experience much more. For some grades, we have posted YouTube tutorials for the dances and rhythm sections: view our CSBS YouTube channel


We follow the guidelines set by the ISTD for our tap examination uniform. All items of required uniform are available to view and purchase from our online shop, CSBS Supplies. If candidates are wearing black jazz trousers, they also need to wear black socks!

On the day...

You must arrive around 20 minutes prior to your exam. This gives the exam candidate plenty of time to get dressed in their uniform, and have their hair done by a CSBS teacher if required. It's also a time to get calm before they enter the exam studio. It is the parent's job to be calm and encouraging (no matter how nervous you actually are!). Each venue has a waiting room where parents can wait... although we recommend taking the opportunity to go to one of the nearby cafes for a coffee and cake to calm your nerves! 

Exam results

The class teacher receives the reports around 4 weeks after the exam. You will be notified when your results are in. Certificates usually arrive after another 4 weeks and will be presented in class time where the other students can applaud the children for their success and they will have their photo taken by the class teacher.

The children will have an overall mark of Pass, Merit or Distinction. Parents should note that a pass at any level is a great success as these exams are particularly challenging and they should not compare their child's mark or achievement with any other child in the class.

We strive to meet the following objectives:

Promoting dance excellence

A range of venues

Our venues include: South Queensferry, Linlithgow, Falkirk Braes, Grangemouth,

Encouraging participation

At every age and level, our dance pupils are encouraged to attend, spectate and participate in a variety of dance events to enhance their experience of dance.

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