About Online Theory

thumb_steve2011-aHow Does It Work?

History, Harmony, and Analysis are taught by me, Stephan Tan, personally through an online meeting client. Rudiments video courses have been prepared by me in a way that seems as though you are being taught live.
Each live lesson consists of a lecture portion of the material of the day followed by an interactive review and question and answer session. You will see the material on your computer screen and we will have the opportunity to complete examples and make notes directly on the screen. Furthermore, each lecture will be recorded so that you may go back and review it at anytime. My primary goal is that each and every student understands the material as thoroughly as possible.

What Can I Do to Succeed?

When learning online, there is a certain degree of self-monitoring and self-sufficiency expected of each student. Therefore, I do not recommend my course for individuals under the age of 11 as I feel that younger students would benefit greatly from personal instruction. You must be proficient in handwriting basic music notation. Although it is covered to some extent up to Level 5 Theory, the small details of writing the notes and rests can be tricky so proficiency in this area is essential. Understand that you are expected to complete and mark your own homework assignments using the Answer Book. Try to analyze and understand why you are making certain mistakes and if you need further clarification, you will have ample opportunity to ask your questions at subsequent lectures.
All students who register for full courses also have the opportunity to have as many RCM Official Previous Examination as you are able to complete evaluated by me. If you live near the school,drop them off as you complete them and I will have them ready for you within 2 days. If you don’t live near the school, simply scan it and email it to me as a pdf file. I will evaluate your paper, rescan it and send it back to you within 2 days. Completing previous RCM Official Examinations is a crucial step in your preparation. I recommend that you finish at least the 2 most recent booklets of exams, in other words, 6-8 in total. Purchase them from your local music book retailer.
Remember to purchase a copy of the appropriate textbook that we will go through together. In my opinion, the ones I have chosen are the best and easiest to follow. For a list of required textbooks, click here.
To summarize, there are some important obligations in order to successfully complete the course:
  1. Attend and/or view each lecture on the proper day and time
  2. Complete and mark the assigned homework each week
  3. Complete 6-8 practice exams and send them to me for evaluation (by fax or email)
If you feel that you may not be able to fulfill these requirements, online theory may not be for you. You would risk getting a less-than-desired mark on your exam and lose faith in online instruction. But if you do fulfill these benchmarks and dedicate yourself appropriately, the results will take care of themselves.
You will see that learning from home will save you valuable time and a lot of money. You will learn your theory and have a great time in the process! Thank you sincerely for considering my course.

Best wishes,

Stephan Tan