How Online Courses Are Changing Music Education
Not so long ago, if you wanted to learn to play an instrument, you’d have to go out in the evening after dinner and drive to the teacher’s house for a lesson. It could be stressful and hard to drag out on a cold winter’s evening, especially for young children. Then along came eLearning, which has gone from strength to strength to the point that a lot of people are saying they prefer it. Now, you have the option of learning from an app, a pre-recorded online lesson, a group online course, or a one-on-one Zoom lesson with a live teacher. It’s all available and there a surprising number of benefits.
The First Revolution Of eLearning: Cost
Weekly lessons can be incredibly expensive. Add to that books and equipment, driving there and back, it all costs time and gas money. Even using public transport can be costly and even more time-consuming. With eLearning, you save this time and money. You might still have to buy some books or music (although there’s a lot of music which you can buy online and print out so you can save going to a store or paying for postage to have it delivered).
The thing that’s been missing until now is real-time feedback. In a one-to-one lesson, the teacher can stop you as soon as you play something incorrectly. But now, with in-person online lessons and apps that use AI to listen to what you’re playing in real time, even this drawback has been solved.
The Second Revolution Of eLearning: Time-Tabling
With eLearning, you can have a lesson whenever you want. Most online courses give you access to plenty of pre-recorded lessons that you can start any time. If you are a night bird, you can take a lesson at midnight. Early risers can start a lesson at 6 am. Of course, if you’re doing one-to-one online lessons with a teacher, you are more limited.
The Third Revolution Of eLearning: Choice Of Teacher
Before technology, you could only ever go to a local teacher. So if you lived in the countryside somewhere, your choices would be particularly limited. But even if you lived in South London, it would be really difficult to go to a teacher in North London. Now, suddenly the world is available and so the chances of finding exactly the right teacher who truly inspires you just got easier.
You could take a lesson with a top teacher in New York even though you’re located in Kansas. Or you could have a lesson with someone in Paris even though you’re in Australia. Keeping in mind the time difference, of course, it’s a real possibility and is happening right now.
The Fourth Revolution Of eLearning: The Range Of Subjects To Choose From
Udemy offers courses in piano, guitar, music and audio production, music composition, and music theory from beginner to advanced. Berklee Online offers film scoring, music marketing, orchestration, and critical listening up to and including degrees.
The Fifth Biggest Revolution Of eLearning: Combining Different Learning Methods
There is so much discussion about how people learn differently. Some people are very visual, some very physical, some are very auditory and some like the old-fashioned reading and writing method.
Students can learn the basics of music theory using an online course where they can go at their own pace. They might choose to use a piano app to learn the beginning skills on the piano and then find an online private teacher to advance quickly to the next level.
There is now an abundance of apps to choose from, most offer a free trial—so try some. Go into them with a positive attitude and try them long enough to learn how to use them properly. Use them daily and see how you progress. This might even be enough, but if you want to do more, or you feel you need more support, try online pre-recorded lessons. There are many for free on YouTube or sign up for courses on Udemy or PianoForAll or learn to play bass with BassBuzz.
Online Courses And Music Education: What Does The Future Hold?
During the global pandemic of COVID-19, we have all come a long way when it comes to both teaching and learning online. Many teachers and students were very reluctant to take to eLearning at first, but as time went on, many developed the skills needed to adapt and are continuing to do really well. Time will tell, but it seems this is going to catapult us all into a much higher level of eLearning than ever before.
So with all these choices and so much evidence to suggest that learning music is really important for everybody, it’s time to jump in and find your own best way of learning a musical instrument.