The Musical Aptitude Test

The Musical Aptitude Test is an aural test used for entrance exams for specialist music schools.

The test can take a number of forms but is ultimately designed to look for ‘inherent’ musical aptitude.

However, with the proper knowledge of what and how to practice, it is definitely possible to prepare for one and this page will help you to know how.

3x Free Courses

to help you prepare for Musical Aptitude Tests

A closer look at the
Musical Aptitude Test…

The Standard MAT Test

Preparation lessons, practice tests, videos, PDFs and advice for parents and teachers on how to prepare for the standard Musical Aptitude Test.


One of the simpler parts of the exam, but only if the student has been thinking about pitch before. The student has to recognise the vertical relationship between notes and determine which are higher or lower. They can also be asked to determine the distance between pairs of notes and say how far they are apart compared to another pair.


Building on the skills required in the pitch section of the course, this part of the musical aptitude test evaluates the student’s awareness of melodic contour and difference.


Without doubt the hardest part of the exam. This section looks at the student’s perception of pitch relationships within vertical harmonies. They are asked how many notes are playing and other questions about musical texture.


The rhythm section focuses on the temporal aspects of music, rather than pitch. Students are required to show a keen sense of pulse and it’s relationship to rhythm and asked to spot minute differences in rhythmic excerpts.

Access the Free Courses!

Signup to get free access to all three musical aptitude training courses.

Get the courses

Your Instructor

Jack Vaughan is a composer, conductor and private music teacher in the UK.

Jack started his musical life at the age of 7 with the saxophone, after having seeing a concert at St Georges Bristol. Since then he’s moved on to many other instruments and has specialised in piano, composition, audio production and conducting.

As a composer, Jack has written for theatre, film and television. He has arranged music for The Bristol Ensemble, and assistant-arranged for Charles Hazlewood, Ronni Size and for the BBC Concert orchestra. He has also performed at Glastonbury and WOMAD festivals numerous times.