confusion between different boards

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22tutus
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confusion between different boards

Post by 22tutus » Wed Jun 29, 2016 7:38 pm

ok I am confused

there are quite a few boards and these boards are all different BUT as far as I can work out they map on the qualifications framework so therefore ought to be pretty level?

so RAD/ISTD/BTDA grade 1 should all be the same sort of level and so on up to Grade 6 which then gets UCAS points and then BTDA and RAD go on to grade 8.

SO where does IDTA fit in? IDTA now seems to only have 5 grades so don't get UCAS points for grade 6 (which from looking at it they didn't with their old grade 6 anyway which would imply they weren't up to the same standard but they do with intermediate and advanced).

I have 1 dance teacher telling me that ISTD/RAD are equivalent but IDTA isn't equivalent and then I have another telling me that IDTA is MUCH harder than ISTD or RAD.

anyone able to give a slightly less biased opinion than 2 teachers who obviously prefer the board they teach themselves.

From looking at content (as best you can when IDTA don't publish their syllabus online and noone seems to put IDTA stuff on You Tube oddly unlike RAD and ISTD) and the length of exams (IDTA seem half the length of RAD and ISTD) it would IMPLY that it can't be harder but that might not be the case.

thanks in advance.

mrs_lovett
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Re: confusion between different boards

Post by mrs_lovett » Wed Jun 29, 2016 8:48 pm

IDTA Intermediate is much easier than Intermediate RAD. That is the only experience we have but at my daughter's dance school they do both, the IDTA one first.

Not sure about the grades, dd has always done RAD.

Hope this helps.

22tutus
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Re: confusion between different boards

Post by 22tutus » Thu Jun 30, 2016 12:04 am

thank you - it is really out of sheer curiosity as I have been trying to work out if the teachers just genuinely believe they are teaching the most rigorous syllabus or if one of them is right! I had always been under the impression from what people had said that RAD majors were the best, ISTD and RAD were the best for grades (in ballet anyway) and ISTD was arguably the best for tap and modern and that the others weren't quite as hot on technique but then the people who have told me that have come from either a mixed board background or ISTD/RAD so would probably be biased.

thanks

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Re: confusion between different boards

Post by francescasmum » Thu Jun 30, 2016 11:05 am

my dd did IDTA up to grade 3 then swapped to RAD for grade 4 and there was a massive leap in not only technical but quantity and presentation.

22tutus
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Re: confusion between different boards

Post by 22tutus » Thu Jun 30, 2016 11:34 am

thank you, so my gut instinct to go along with the ISTD teacher is looking right.

lyndahill
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Re: confusion between different boards

Post by lyndahill » Thu Jun 30, 2016 8:12 pm

My DD's dance teacher has said the complete opposite , which is that IDTA grade 4 say is the equivalent of RAD grade 5 or 6 which would mean it's more difficult. There is certainly a lot of technique in what my DD does. I have seen girls that follow ISTD and are on Grade 4 and they are no way near the same standard as the IDTA girls of the same grade. I don't know how long the RAD/ISTD exams are but when DD did her Grade 4 IDTA ballet and tap they were both 35-45 minutes long.xx

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Re: confusion between different boards

Post by mrs_lovett » Thu Jun 30, 2016 9:24 pm

I also think there is a huge difference between a pass and a distinction at RAD. The difference in the standard of technique and performance is huge so there is bound to be a lot of variation in standards within a group who are all working at the same grade. The vocational exams are pretty rigorous though and dds dance teacher never puts them in for the vocational unless they're really up to it. Some are never allowed to the RAD vocationals even if they've been working at them for several years! As I say the only knowledge I have to compare the two is the Intermediate but this particular grade is very much more difficult in RAD and is clear to see. The other grades might be different.

22tutus
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Re: confusion between different boards

Post by 22tutus » Thu Jun 30, 2016 9:35 pm

yes that is true about the range of levels a grade can be performed at and the teacher's expectations of their pupils.

Interesting lyndahill. I have only had experience with the lower grades but certainly the ISTD and RAD exams are around the 30 minute mark and for the same number of students the IDTA and BTDA ones seem to be 10 minutes which would give the impression that they can't be examining the same amount of work unless they just do it very differently?

but if IDTA grades are the same then why was their grade 6 not granted UCAS points and is that why they got rid of it? if their grade 5 was equivalent to the others grade 6 then presumably they ought to get UCAS points for their grade 5?

Katymac
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Re: confusion between different boards

Post by Katymac » Fri Jul 01, 2016 12:51 am

I think, like with GCSE exams each have their advantages and disadvantages. iGCSEs are different to exdacel (sp) and different school recommend different ones for different students

Comparing them, to me seems pointless. You need to work out what is best for you/your child - travelling 2 hours to get to a preferred syllabus might be less successful that doing a less preferred exam board and having occasional non-syllabus classes

I dunno I could be talking pants (it is very late!!)

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Re: confusion between different boards

Post by 2dancersmum » Fri Jul 01, 2016 10:13 am

From my understanding, the earlier IDTA grades a easier and a student is likely to progress through the grades perhaps more quickly than for ISTD or RAD but there is no direct comparison between each individual grade.

RAD has grades 1-5 (level 2), grades 6-8 (level 3) , interfoundation, intermediate (level 3), advanced foundation (level 3), adv 1 and adv 2.
The levels I give are in reference to the qualifications framework. Level 3 qualifies for UCAS points.

IDTA has grades 1-5 (level 2) and then intermediate (level 3) - I don't know about their advanced levels.

In RAD (and ISTD) the vocational grades can be studied alongside the normal grades - they do not follow on ie you do not do 1-8 and then the vocational exams. DD's teacher told us that inter-f was broadly grades 4-5 in technique level (exam is much harder though), and intermediate is broadly across grades 6-7.

IDTA intermediate exam falls somewhere between RADs interfoundation and intermediate - ie harder than interfoundation and easier than intermediate - putting it roughly it at grades 5-6 (RAD)

DDs school has both IDTA teachers and RAD teachers but they chose to go with RAD for the ballet grades, although they used to do some IDTA medals and awards before RAD introduced their new awards.

As Katymac says - getting a good teacher is probably more important than which syllabus as each syllabus has good and bad points.

22tutus
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Re: confusion between different boards

Post by 22tutus » Fri Jul 01, 2016 12:53 pm

We are lucky in that we have access to pretty much all the different dance boards within a couple of miles of our house (including RAD, ISTD, IDTA, ARBTA, BTDA and another I can't remember) and we do like the school my girls are at but they do seem to move very slowly compared to friends who are doing IDTA and I have been wondering whether at some point they might want to change school, I haven't suggested it but one DD in particular is fed up with her IDTA friends going on about being on higher grades than her so has been talking about whether if she did a different board she would be higher or whether it is her ability - should be added she gets exceptionally high results in her exams whilst her friends don't but then different boards mark differently so that might not mean anything. I respect her teacher very much and think she really knows her stuff but as a non dancer it is hard for me to know for sure if she is just being biased about ISTD being good compared to some other boards etc.

I will encourage my daughter to try and ignore the comments about her "still" being on x or y grade and to be proud that she is learning to work very hard to perfect things as much as possible and get very high marks where if she wanted to rush through grades she could pass them but wouldn't do as well and therefore wouldn't have as good technique in the future presumably.

couldn't my children have done sports I knew something about?

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Re: confusion between different boards

Post by lyndahill » Fri Jul 01, 2016 1:19 pm

22tutus - I hear that from other Dance Teachers at other dance schools, that girls at their school of the same age as my DD are on Grade X, Y & Z - the difference being that these schools appear to rush through the exams and possibly aren't looking for all of the students to achieve high pass rates whereas my DD has gained high Distinctions in every grade that she's done and her school generally does just 1 possibly 2 graded exams a year depending on if the teacher thinks you will pass with a Distinction or High Merit. I'm not bothered what grade my DD is on - because when it comes to auditioning for a place at a performing arts college it will be that day that matters most and not whether you are on Grade 8 ballet or not.

22tutus
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Re: confusion between different boards

Post by 22tutus » Fri Jul 01, 2016 7:07 pm

yes that is true Lynda, hard to explain to a 7 year old though.

Her school does have a bit of a "distinction" expectation which in some ways I don't like too much as I think it puts more pressure on them plus it can mean they take almost a little bit TOO long to get grades done from what some of the older girls' mums tell me but equally it does mean they learn a very good work ethic as they learn you have to really focus on perfecting things not just learning them and I think this is the truly transferable skill if they don't then want to carry on with dancing in the future.

Like people have said the teacher and the teacher's attitude seem more important than the syllabus.

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Re: confusion between different boards

Post by Hecouldshine » Fri Jul 01, 2016 8:15 pm

Ds has just done IDTA Advanced 2 ballet. His teacher switched syllabuses from RAD to IDTA when he reached Intermediate as she felt IDTA demanded more step knowledge/vocabulary at that level which helped those auditioning at Intermediate level. I guess if her pupils had been auditioning for colleges at a higher ballet level it wouldn't have been such an issue.

There was no Advanced foundation in IDTA so ds went straight onto Advanced 1 And then Adv 2. I think the Advanced 1 was probably just above RAD ADv foundation and Adv 2 just above RAD Adv 1, but with a wider number of steps learnt. Does that make sense? That's based on watching a friend's dd's progress through RAD and seeing them dance in the same classes at times.

He's also done Intermediate IDTA Tap and Modern Jazz but I have no idea how they compare with the other boards.

I know he got UCAS points for his IDTA Intermediate ballet (same as RAD Intermediate) but Advanced 1 and 2 don't count as they are "too high" a qualification - equivalent to first year university. Whereas RAD ADvanced foundation does attract UCAS points - but of course IDTA don't have an Advanced Foundation :roll:

Don't know if that helps. I'm with Katymac on this - teacher (and location) is more important than board.
He could go and he could shine, not just stay here counting time,
Son, we've got the chance to let him live

from Billy Elliot the Musical

22tutus
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Re: confusion between different boards

Post by 22tutus » Fri Jul 01, 2016 10:20 pm

all sounds a bit mad that something people can take when still at school is classed as too high to qualify for UCAS points. You would think IDTA would have an advanced foundation level then wouldn't you to match the others but then if the levels don't map across then they must have their reasons. I know what you mean about a wider variety of steps, I know some boards don't include as much free work in the exams which again is something they presumably need to be good at if they wish to carry on dancing.

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