A Complete Guide To Grade 3 Music Theory

Are you or your child preparing for the ABRSM Grade 3 Music Theory exam? Do you want to build a strong foundation in music theory? Look no further! The Complete Guide to Grade 3 Music Theory is here to help you achieve success.


What This Book Covers

Chapter 1

Simple And Compound Meter Time Signatures

Building upon your previous knowledge of time signatures, this section delves into both simple and compound meter time signatures.

You'll explore concepts like simple meter, compound duple meter, compound triple meter, and compound quadruple meter.

Chapter 2

Converting Simple And Compound Meters

This chatper provides insights into converting between simple and compound meter time signatures.

You'll gain a deeper understanding of the relationships between different time signatures, enabling you to navigate complex rhythmic patterns with confidence.

Chapter 3

Thirty-Second Notes

In this chapter, we introduce thirty-second notes (demisemiquavers).

You'll learn about the characteristics of a thirty-second note, how to notate thirty-second note rests, and the best practices for beaming and grouping these notes effectively.

Chapter 4

Major Scales With Up To Four Sharps Or Flats

Building on your knowledge of major scales, this section introduces major scales with up to four sharps or flats.

You'll explore the E Major scale and the Ab Major scale, uncovering their unique patterns and key signatures.

Chapter 5

Melodic Minor Scale

Diving into the world of minor scales, this chapter introduces a new type of scale: the melodic minor scale.

You'll understand both ascending and descending forms (they're different) and learn the formula needed to construct it.

Chapter 6

Minor Scales With Up To Four Sharps Or Flats

Sticking with minor scales, this chapter covers minor scales with up to four sharps or flats.

You'll explore the B Minor scale and the F Minor scale, unraveling their patterns and key signatures.

Chapter 7


Intervals play a crucial role in music theory, and this chapter offers an in-depth exploration.

You'll delve into interval qualities, uncovering the different types of interval qualities, including perfect, major, and minor intervals.

Chapter 8

Ledger Lines

Building on your previous knowledge, this chapter is a brief overview of ledger lines in grade three..

You'll learn how to effectively notate notes above and below the staff using ledger lines, ensuring accuracy in your musical notation.

Chapter 9

Octave Signs

Understanding the concept of octave signs is a very handy when it comes to notating notes that have a lot of legdger lines far above or below the staff.

This chapter will help you understand how octave signs impact the pitch of notes and can make music a lot easier to read.

Chapter 10

Octave Transposition

Being able to transpose music is a crucial skill for musicians both in theory and practically.

This chapter we'll learn how to transpose music up and down an octave and how to write music in more than one clef.

Chapter 11


Upbeats, also known as anacrusis, are essential to musical phrasing.

This section covers their significance in musical context and how they contribute to the flow of a melody.

Chapter 12

Simple Phrase Structure

Unpacking the concept of a musical phrase, this chapter explores the role of phrases in music.

You'll gain insights into the components of a phrase and how they contribute to musical structure and form.

Chapter 13

Grouping Notes In Compound Meter

Continuing your exploration of rhythmic elements, in this chapter you'll learn how to beam and group notes in compound meter.

We'll cover beaming eighth notes, beaming sixteenth notes, and effectively using tied notes and rests in compound meter.

Chapter 14

Performance Directions

And finally, this chapter rounds off the guide by delving into performance directions you need to know for grade three.

You'll explore dynamics, tempo, and other performance-related markings that guide musicians in expressing the emotion and intent of a composition.

American And British Terminology

In this download, you get two copies, one with British terms like crotchets and semitones, and another with US terminology like quarter notes and half steps.

Instant And Lifetime

When you purchase, you get instant access through our learning portal. You also get lifetime access to all updates

What Previous Customers Thought

"I love using these study guides with my pupils. Not only informative but laid out very clearly. It works with students of all ages. I’d highly recommend for all teachers and students alike."​

Matt Veria - Teacher, UK

"| really enjoyed using your book. I feel I finally am beginning to understand music theory for the first time. Keep up the good work!"​

Laura Hayes - Student, UK

"Thank you for your excellent resources. I received my results yesterday and achieved 100% on my first exam. Your guides helped me prepare well for my exam, and I was confident and relaxed.

Thank you for your hard work and making music really easy for the rest of us."

Tammy S - Student, South Africa

"A game-changer! The explanations are clear, the examples are practical, and the guide is structured in a way that makes learning enjoyable.

I highly recommend this study guide to any parent or student looking to learn music theory."

Sarah M - Parent, US

Download A Free Chapter

See if this book is right for you by signing up to our mail list and previewing a chapter. Just let us know where to send it.

We don't spam. Unsubscribe at any time.

About The Author

Hey, I'm Dan Farrant, the founder of MusicTheoryUniversity. I've been teaching music theory for over 15 years now. In that time, I've helped over hundreds of thousands of students navigate the intricacies of this music theory.

I studied my undergraduate at the prestigious Royal Academy of Music. Now, I run this website as well as performing, and teaching all over the world.

From teaching so many students, I've noticed that students face the same challenges when it comes to music theory. So, I've carefully put together this guide to address these challenges, providing a comprehensive resource that guides students through the essential concepts and techniques necessary to succeed in the ABRSM Grade 3 theory exam.

Frequently Asked Questions

Got Questions? We've Got Answers

What Music Theory Syllabus is This for?

This book is specifically written with the ABRSM Grade 3 Music Theory syllabus in mind. But, it's perfect for intermediate students and will give a good fundamental knowledge of music theory whether you're taking an exam or not.

Do You Sell Physical Copies?

Sadly not yet. Currently it's digital download only. This is something that we're looking into for the future. Sign up to our newsletter for updates.

Is There a Money Back Guarantee?

Absolutely. We offer a 30 day money back guarantee. Just let us know why you don't like it and if we can't make it right, we'll refund you 100%.

Is My Credit Card Secure?

Definitely. Our website and card processor is partnered with Stripe and PayPal and uses a secure 256-bit encryption to make sure your details are safe and 100% secure.

Ready To Master Grade 3 Music Theory?

Are you ready to take your music theory knowledge to new heights and achieve outstanding results in your ABRSM Grade 3 Music Theory exam?

Invest in your musical journey today and gain lifetime access to this invaluable resource.

And to give you complete peace of mind, we offer a 30-day money-back guarantee. If you're not satisfied for any reason, simply let us know, and we'll refund your purchase.