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12-Week Courses

Courses are best for students who are looking to meet a specific need, or simply want to get started with Berklee Online. No application necessary.


Guitar Chords 101

Add more dynamics and expression to your playing and gain a greater feel for your instrument by learning Berklee’s approach to the construction of chords and chord voicings.

Level 1

Level 1

Guitar Chords 201: Chord Melody and Inversions

Master Berklee’s approach to playing guitar chords. Improve your style, intonation, technique, time feel, and tone in this in-depth course. Explore open triads, seventh chord structures, open triadic shapes, and inversions in a variety of musical styles.

Level 3

Level 3

Guitar Scales 101

Organize the guitar fretboard, develop your technique, and learn to confidently navigate the instrument by gaining a firm understanding of the pentatonic, blues, major, melodic minor, and harmonic minor scales and their modes.

Level 1

Level 1

Blues Guitar

Learn the techniques and licks of classic blues stylists, such as T-Bone Walker, Lightning Hopkins, B.B. King, and Magic Sam. Gain a foundation in form, control, feel, and harmony that will help to bring a blues sound to your playing or add more depth to any other style of music.

Level 2

Level 2

Jazz Guitar 101

Study the styles of some of the most influential jazz guitarists, and learn the basics behind the jazz language: chord/scale usage, building melodic tension, and improvisation techniques.

Level 3

Level 3

 Take advantage of early enrollment pricing on this course.
Classic Rock Guitar

Elevate your playing by learning the styles and techniques of the architects of classic rock guitar: Hendrix, Clapton, Beck, Gilmour, and Page.

Level 2

Level 2

Jazz Guitar 201: Advanced Jazz Guitar Improvisation

Develop your jazz guitar performance skills by learning advanced techniques to improvise over chord changes, both in traditional standards and complex modern harmony.

Level 4

Level 4

Guitar Improvisation Techniques

Learn to play a great guitar solo! Guitar Improvisation Techniques is designed to help guitarists who may have learned the technical aspects of playing, but lack the theoretical application of the musical elements that make up a strong solo that moves the listener.

Level 4

Level 4

Acoustic Blues Guitar

Develop a foundational, working repertoire in the acoustic blues style that includes early and contemporary material from the Mississippi Delta, Texas, Georgia/Carolinas, and more. Learn to fingerpick melodies and solos over independent bass patterns, and perform in the acoustic bottleneck slide style in both standard and open tunings.

Level 3

Level 3

Funk/Rock and R&B Guitar Soloing

Learn the appropriate scales, the best use of effects, and the rhythmic and melodic timing to create an authentic funk-based solo and sound.

Level 3

Level 3

Acoustic Guitar Techniques

Strengthen your rhythmic strumming, use of alternate tunings, and fingerstyle playing, and improve your fluency, tone, dynamics, and control.

Level 3

Level 3

 Take advantage of early enrollment pricing on this course.
Rhythm and Groove Guitar

Learn the rhythmic techniques and chord tools that are the foundation of groove-based music. Expand your chord knowledge and learn to construct original rhythm guitar grooves that you can apply to a wide variety of music styles.

Level 2

Level 2

Getting Your Guitar Sound

Learn to use your ears, hands, and the tools of the trade to play jazz, rock, blues, country and other genres, with a high-quality, authentic and persuasive guitar tone.

Level 2

Level 2

Fundamentals of Classical Guitar

Gain a foundational, working repertoire for the classical guitar. Develop an extensive repertoire of techniques, including tremolo, rasguedo, harmonics, slurs, and percussion effects.

Level 2

Level 2

Steve Vai Guitar Techniques

Gain a deep understanding and command of the playing styles, repertoire, techniques, and musical concepts of guitar legend and Berklee alum Steve Vai. Learn the secrets behind Vai’s best-known compositions and virtuosic techniques, and learn to improve your own solos, chord and rhythm playing, and overall voice on the guitar.

Level 4

Level 4

Gary Burton: Jazz Improvisation

Learn the art of jazz improvisation from Gary Burton, one of the most renowned improvisers in the jazz world. Learn different types and styles of compositions from the perspective of the improviser, and take an in-depth look at how mental, harmonic, and melodic processes contribute to the instinctive skills that an improviser puts to use when taking a solo.

Level 3

Level 3

Basic Improvisation

Learn a step-by-step approach to improvisation that applies to all styles and any instrument. Develop your solos by studying the riffs and licks of legendary players, and learn to incorporate the inflections, feel, and nuances of the masters into your own playing!

Level 1

Level 1

Advanced Blues Guitar

In this advanced course, learn how to play rhythm guitar parts and solos over a variety of blues progressions, grooves, and tempos, in styles such as shuffles, funky blues, blues/rumbas, blues/rock, soul, and slow blues.

Level 3

Level 3

Music Technology for Guitarists

Music Technology for Guitarists provides guitar students with an understanding of digital technology applicable to recording and live performance. By the end of the course, students will demonstrate a mastery of basic digital audio workstation (DAW) functionality and creative use of guitar amplifier modeling and effects processing.

Level 1

Level 1

 Take advantage of early enrollment pricing on this course.
Guitar Ensemble Techniques

Guitar Ensemble Techniques gives guitarists the essential and practical skills to play well with others in any ensemble situation, whether it’s a big stage performance or an impromptu jam session.

Level 4

Level 4

 Guitar Degree Majors Only
Private Guitar Lesson Level 1

Private Guitar Lesson Level 1 focuses on the theoretical foundation for guitar performance. Upon completion, you will be able to play chromatic and major scale forms, and understand the chord forms represented by these scales. You will master triads across the fretboard in the most common keys before moving on to four-part chords and arpeggios.

 Guitar Degree Majors Only
Private Guitar Lesson Level 2

Private Guitar Lesson Level 2 introduces the melodic minor scale and the harmonic possibilities represented by the scale. A mastery of the related triads across the fretboard in the most common keys will be used as an introduction to four-part chords, close chord voicings, chord tensions, and arpeggios. In addition, you will be introduced to the whole-tone scale in two octaves across the fretboard.

 Guitar Degree Majors Only
Private Guitar Lesson Level 3

Where Private Guitar Lesson Level 2 introduced the melodic minor scale and the harmonic possibilities represented by the scale, Level 3 does the same with the harmonic minor scale and its chordal possibilities. A mastery of the related triads across the fretboard in the most common keys will be used as an introduction to four-part chords and arpeggios. In addition, you will be introduced to the diminished scale in two octaves across the fretboard. This knowledge will be applied to a final musical piece under the guidance of the instructor.

 Guitar Degree Majors Only
Private Guitar Lesson Level 4

Private Guitar Lesson Level 4 builds upon the knowledge imparted in Level 3 regarding the harmonic minor scale and its basis for harmonic possibilities. You will also be introduced to the major and minor pentatonic scale in two octaves across the fretboard. An expansion of melodic minor chord forms will also be explored.

 Guitar Degree Majors Only
Private Guitar Lesson Level 5

Private Guitar Lesson Level 5 focuses on the major scale in all keys and in various positions on the fretboard. You will explore chord inversions further and practice voice leading by way of triads in C major. You will also master the chromatic scale in all keys and in three octaves.

 Guitar Degree Majors Only
Private Guitar Lesson Level 6

Private Guitar Lesson Level 6 revisits the melodic minor scale and its harmonic permutations. You will explore melodic minor in all keys and in three octaves. Knowledge of the whole tone scale will be extended to all keys as well. Chord inversions will be expanded upon and voice leading will be practiced by way of triads in C melodic minor. You will master four-part arpeggios and chord voicings in all keys.

 Guitar Degree Majors Only
Private Guitar Lesson Level 7

Private Guitar Lesson Level 7 builds upon the knowledge gained in earlier levels regarding the harmonic minor scale and its chordal possibilities. You will also revisit the diminished scale. Both scales will be studied in all keys. Chord inversions will be expanded upon and voice leading will be practiced by way of triads in C harmonic minor. You will also explore harmonic minor four-part chord forms further.

 Guitar Degree Majors Only
Private Guitar Lesson Level 8

Private Guitar Lesson Level 8 continues the application of the harmonic minor scale and its chordal possibilities in all keys. You will also revisit the major and minor pentatonic scales and apply them to all keys. You will demonstrate close and spread voicings by way of voice-led triads across the fretboard. In addition, you will dive deeper into diminished triad arpeggios by demonstrating them in three octaves from any chord tone and in all keys. Four-part chord forms and arpeggios will also be explored in all keys across the fretboard.

 Guitar Degree Majors Only
Private Guitar Lesson Level 9

Private Guitar Lesson Level 9 is an opportunity for you to demonstrate the depth and breadth of the skills you have developed in the Guitar program. Throughout the term you have worked with your private lesson instructor to formulate the repertoire for your performances, so that it aptly showcases your understanding and application of music theory, chord scales, and single-note and chord technique, while creatively applying them to musical settings.

Solo Guitar: Performance, Accompaniment, and Arranging

In this course, we will be working on melodic embellishment, harmony as it relates to the guitar fingerboard, rhythm as it relates to different musical grooves, and improvisation concepts to put together a complete solo guitar piece.

Level 3

Level 3

 

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