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Berklee Adds More Guitar to Online Curriculum

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Berkleemusic adds five new college-credit guitar courses and programs to their burgeoning online curriculum – no cowbell, yet., the online extension school of Berklee College of Music, has added five new online guitar courses and five new college-credit guitar certificate programs to their online curriculum. Courses include Guitar Scales 101; Amps, Effects, and Getting Your Guitar Sound; Guitar Chords 101; Blues Guitar Workshop; and Recording and Producing for Guitarists. The online extension school has enrolled 3,000 students in more than 75 countries around the globe since it opened two years ago.

Berkleemusic’s instructor-led approach to online teaching provides students with access to Berklee’s renowned faculty and curriculum. The online guitar courses are based on the same curriculum that is taught on the physical campus but incorporate a variety of media-rich cutting-edge technologies developed specifically for guitar instruction in the online medium. Berklee’s professors agree that one of the major benefits of the courses are the ease at which personal interaction takes place, fostering a powerful community.

“We spent a great deal of time exploring the technology and teaching of online performance-based courses. Before adding any courses to the catalog, we made sure that they would be of the same high quality as that of the brick-and-mortar guitar courses for which Berklee is so well known,” said Debbie Cavalier, the Dean of Continuing Education at Berklee.

Students have direct access to their instructor thorough weekly scheduled chats, which also allow for lesson discussion between classmates. Additionally, students upload their assignments as MP3 files to their instructor for personalized review.

“This is a must have course for guitar players no matter what level of playing experience,” said John Jenkins, who just finished Guitar Chords 101. “The way the course was laid out and presented was brilliant. The audio and video clips greatly reinforced the material being taught. I’ve searched through a lot of online guitar instruction out there and this Berklee course was by far the best.”

Guitar certificate programs run from one year to three years in length, and provide a comprehensive background in production and guitar, songwriting and guitar, and foundational guitar skills. All online courses and programs are accredited by NEASC (New England Association of Schools and Colleges), the same institution that accredits Berklee College of Music. Enrollment is now open for the next semester, which begins on June 27, 2005.

More on Berklee online offerings here, here, here, here, here and here.

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About Eric Olsen

  • The Proprietor

    I’d be interested in looking at the amps and effects course, simply to see if it perpetuates some musical inaccuracies. For example, the orthodox view is that at least up until they switched over to Fender amps, the Beatles used Vox AC30s in the studio exclusively. That’s contradicted by much photographic and logged evidence that they used different amps at different times, such as the extremely rare Vox hybrid amps used at the time of Revolver and Sgt. Pepper, and earlier on, their AC100 stage amps were used on songs like “I Feel Fine”. Similarly, although Jimmy Page is known for his Marshall amplifier use, he was not averse to using tiny Fender Champ amps in the studio, completely cranked of course to get a huge sound at a reasonable volume (“Stairway To Heaven” of course being the most notable example). For the effects geeks, there are sites which will not only get into guitarists’ signal chains, but even methodically dissect their effects settings (A terrific example is this analysis of The Edge’s delay settings

    There are so many variation amongst these things that it would indeed take a full course to get them down (tube vs. solid state rectifier, whether to jumper the amp inputs, etc) but I must admit it seems a touch silly to me (especially the use of a computer plug-in to get a feel for the way different amps sound).

    Then again, if the objective is to create one’s own sound instead of duplicating Jimi circa Electric Ladyland, I’d think a better investment would be heading down to a music store or three and plugging into every amp and effect combo you can, while twisting the dials until it sounds right.

  • Eric Olsen

    maybe you should be teaching the effects class, TP!

  • Aaman

    Very pricey, IMHO, especially for intro courses($900+) – I could buy a stack of books and a software program for that much.

    I will get that guitar book, though – looks good.

  • Eric Olsen

    that’s the real “Berklee to go”