Why We’re Rolling Out Online Courses with a Human Touch



We’re obsessed with uncovering better ways to teach and learn. Everyone in the Soundfly office takes on weekly writing challenges to push ourselves to learn more musically. We read books about practicing and how people learn. We talk to psychologists and neuroscientists about the process of learning. And we’re constantly looking to invent new approaches, both online and off, to help people learn both quickly and deeply.

Earlier this year, we started making shorter, more modular micro-courses because we saw that giving people quick wins helped them stick with it and keep going, especially in self-directed learning. This summer, we launched four new series of micro-courses to build on this idea and help people learn at their own pace. We also partnered with guitar string manufacturer D’Addario to offer free guitar strings to anyone who completed the activities in our Alternate Tunings for the Creative Guitarist series because we know that the most meaningful learning comes not through passively watching videos, but by actually practicing, putting ideas into action, and pushing yourself.

Now, we’re taking probably our biggest leap to date. One of the things we’ve noticed is how helpful deadlines, accountability, and having people to bounce ideas off of can be when learning.

We’ll always believe in the power of online learning and self-teaching, but there are a few things humans can offer that computers alone can’t: feedback, validation, motivation, and confidence boosts. And that extra helping hand can mean the difference between giving up when you hit a roadblock and working through it to get to the next level.

That’s why we’re re-launching two of our most in-depth courses with a brand new focus on personal attention and expert support. Take a look at what we hope will be an even more powerful learning experience:

The New Songwriter’s Workshop


The New Songwriter’s Workshop is a course designed to help beginner songwriters learn the foundational elements of songwriting, with the goal of writing better music.

Our new, more human format works in “sessions.” Students can sign up at any time and gain instant, forever access to all of the course’s online resources — videos, community commenting, downloadable music and resources, and more. When our first six-week-long session begins on September 21st, students will get access to a personal Course Advisor (an expert with practical and academic experience in the subject) who will answer questions and offer songwriting feedback, weekly Office Hours, and a Slack community where you can talk to advisors and students and share music and resources, while you work your way through the course in step with your fellow students.

Use the discount code SEPTEMBERSALE16 for 20% off!

Orchestration for Strings


Orchestration for Strings is another in-depth course about how to compose or arrange works for the string section of an orchestra.

In this course, on top of getting personal feedback from our Course Advisors, you’ll also get access to two livestreaming workshops — featuring an interview with a professional composer and a workshop with a string quartet. During the second workshop, we’ll be performing student works with the quartet, and recording the performances for your future use. Orchestration for Strings will run for 5 weeks. Sign up now to be part of the September 21 session.

We’re really excited about these revamped courses and their potential to offer students an even more comprehensive learning experience. We believe strongly in the power of self-directed learning, but also know how powerful a little nudge can be along the way.

Let us know if you have questions about these, or any other of our courses, by reaching out to us at [email protected] We’d always love to hear from you. And remember to use the code SEPTEMBERSALE16 for 20% off The New Songwriter’s Workshop and Orchestration for Strings. Happy learning and playing!

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