Free classical composition online course starting next week (January 13, 2015) on Coursera

January 9, 2015 7:16 AM

The course is "Write Like Mozart: An Introduction to Classical Music Composition", offered via the National University of Singapore. It's a 6 week course. You can take it for free, or pay Coursera for an official certificate, suitable for framing or wrapping fish.

The title is a bit preposterous and I'm sure the course barely scratches the surface of this vast subject, but having wondered my whole life how classical composition actually works I'm pretty excited. It officially starts next week, but they've already put up the first week's materials so people can get a head start over the weekend.

Who's with me?
posted by usonian (6 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

(...and now I feel like I should state for good measure that I have no affiliation with Coursera et cetera, et cetera. )
posted by usonian at 7:19 AM on January 9, 2015

"Having wondered my whole life how classical composition actually works I'm pretty excited" = pretty much the whole point of & awesomeness of Coursera. I'm excited for you!
posted by kalapierson at 4:25 PM on January 9, 2015 [1 favorite]

Hi usonian, thanks for mentioning this. I wish I could join (darned time constraints and a very faded memory of music theory) -- it definitely sounds interesting and something I'd want to learn. Good luck and have fun! and I hope you'll update the thread with your thoughts on the course when it's over.
posted by rangefinder 1.4 at 11:20 PM on January 12, 2015

rangefinder 1.4: If you have a Coursera account you can sign up to watch a given class, and they'll send you a notification when a new session is announced.

I'm still working my way through the week 1 video lectures, and for my level of theory knowledge and lack of familiarity with the bass clef it's challenging but not "in over my head" territory yet. It definitely dives right in and is very information dense so far, at least compared to the Berklee "Developing Your Musicianship" class which is pretty shallow and at a very introductory level.
posted by usonian at 10:26 AM on January 13, 2015

Ooh, intriguing, but I'm tight on time. About how many hours per week do you think you have to commit to in order to get something out of this?
posted by ignignokt at 10:51 AM on January 30, 2015

The video lectures are broken into fairly manageable chunks (I think the longest one I can recall was 18 minutes, with the average probably closer to 10) but I'd say there are about 90 minutes' worth in any given week... so that's what you'd be looking at at an absolute bare minimum. The videos are very informative and progressive; each one builds on concepts introduced in previous ones. There are weekly quizzes which don't take too long, and weekly assignments which I've found the most time consuming; but that's probably because I came on on the lower end of the "minimum theory and comfort with notation necessary to keep up" spectrum. I think I spent 2-3 hours on an assignment last weekend. Granted, in this particular course there's no assessment for the weekly assignments, so you don't *technically* need to do them at all. You could glean quite a bit of knowledge by just signing up for free and watching the videos even if you never did any of the quizzes or homework.
posted by usonian at 10:41 AM on January 31, 2015 [1 favorite]

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