Music aptitude places

Music aptitude


Music aptitude places

All students attending Shireland CBSO Academy are expected to have a commitment to music, recognising that they will be immersed in a musical experience throughout their time with us. 

Each year, we are able to offer a limited number of year 7 places (15) on our music aptitude programme for students who are already exceptionally talented in music.  Obtaining a place at the Academy via this music aptitude route means that these students will be expected to be leaders amongst their peers and an example of key characteristics of a successful musician through, for example, their outstanding performance skills.  They will be expected to act as ambassadors for the Academy and support our work with our local primary schools and community groups to help shape the Shireland CBSO students of the future. 

The Academy has a nodal admissions structure, meaning that students in each of the six towns in Sandwell can realistically gain a place at the Academy.  However, we realise that not all students will necessarily live close to one of these points; these music aptitude places will give all exceptional young musicians, regardless of where they live in Sandwell and the wider West Midlands, the opportunity to study with us. 

How do I apply?

  1. Students applying for a music aptitude place should upload a video of themselves playing an instrument or singing to YouTube as an ‘unlisted’ video. The video should be a maximum length of 3 minutes, which best showcases their musical ability.
    Instructions on how to upload an unlisted video on YouTube are below.
  2. Students will also need to complete a music aptitude application form in addition to the local authority school application form. The music aptitude application form will ask for a link to your uploaded video, so please make sure you have this ready beforehand.
  3. We will then create a shortlist and these students will be invited to meet with us during the weeks commencing 16 or 23 October 2023 where they will be asked to play or sing a piece of music live (again, maximum 3 minutes in length), followed by a short interview.  Students and families will be informed as to whether they have been successful before the deadline for school place applications on 31 October.


If you are not shortlisted for interview, please do not be discouraged; there are 135 other places at Shireland CBSO Academy that you can apply for as part of the main admissions process. 

The deadline for music aptitude applications is: Monday 2 October 2023.

Dates for 2025 entry will be added in summer 2024.

  1. Sign in to YouTube Studio at You may need to create an account if you don’t already have one.
  2. In the top-right corner, click ‘create’ (camera icon) then ‘upload video’.
  3. Select the file you’d like to upload. Be sure to click ‘edit’ on each file to edit your video details.
  4. On the ‘visibility’ page, select ‘unlisted’ from the drop-down box. This will provide you with a shareable link but means that your video will not be publicly available or searchable online. Only people with the link will be able to see the video.


You can find out more information about how to publish a video on YouTube at: Upload YouTube videos – Computer – YouTube Help (

For admissions enquiries email or call 0121 818 4620.

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