In Brazilian Jiu Jitsu there is not a set standard way to be/get promoted to the next rank/belt. Some teams/gyms utilize the stripe system some don't, some test for their next rank and some don't. Which is right and which is wrong? Well..there is no right or wrong way to be promoted in BJJ due to the fact our martial art/sport doesn't have one governing body that has rules and regulations. However the biggest BJJ organization IBJJF (International Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Federation) does have rule set for promotions whether your organization follows it or not. Now I'm speaking from my personal opinion and some may agree/disagree but here are my thoughts:
A. ALL students should be promoted with the same standards. If you require certain amount of classes and understanding of techniques, it should be enforced to ALL students. A Student should not get promoted because he won the Worlds/Pans or some major competition but have not met the minimum class attendance or understanding of techniques.
B. A Student should be promoted whether he/she is a elite competitor or a hobbyist. Everyone that comes on the mat is not there to be the next World Champion or even a NAGA medalist and doesn't want anything to do with competing. Should that hold him back from getting promoted? Vise versa, Just because you want the student to "win" a big championship before he/she gets promoted is it fair to hold them back? Whatever standards your organization uses it should be implemented to the entire student body.
C. Formal testing or not? Again, there is no right or wrong way when it comes to promotions. Some academies choose to do a formal testing (some even charge for testing; cost pays for Belt, Certificate and the Professor's time. I do not charge for promotions) and some do not. As long as the same standards are required for promotion testing or no testing shouldn't be a big deal.
D. Promotions should NOT be based on JUST performance. As we all know some are natural born athletes and some are more of the brainy type. Age, gender, lifestyle and physical attributes should be considered. You can not expect a 40 year old blue belt female to perform/move like a 20 year old blue belt male.
In the end, however promotions are handled everyone should be treated and graded with the same Standards throughout the academy. What are your thoughts?