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Online Theory Course (opinions)

trimmy

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Group On have a deal for a online music theory course at £19.99 i was thinking of getting it, I have the AB music theory book which i leave in my cab to study.
Question is would the online version be of benefit ? Or does anyone know of other resources which maybe be better ?
Group On course
https://www.clementstheory.com/
 

davidk

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The AB theory books and a set of previous examination papers were what I used for grade 5. I had a look at a freebie online question / answer site, but it didn't cover the syllabus and wasn't accurate.

I have no experience of the groupon site, so can't comment on that.

Read the AB theory books thoroughly and do a past paper. This will highlight weaknesses. Revise these and do another past paper. Once you're getting high marks, you should be good to go.

The hardest part I found was memorising the musical terms. They're not a major part of the exam though. I knew about a third to a half of them, and still managed grade 5
 

MandyH

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I got the thin orange (red?) AB book "First steps in Music Theory, grades 1-5" which has 5 chapters, one for each grade: http://www.amazon.co.uk/First-Steps...4&sr=1-2&keywords=first+steps+in+music+theory which I read a chapter at a time, then did 4 past papers (you get 4 papers in each booklet) relating to each chapter.
Once I had read that and done the past papers, I also read the pink book, "AB Guide to Music Theory, book 1": http://www.amazon.co.uk/AB-Guide-Mu...&keywords=the+ab+guide+to+music+theory+part+1 from beginning to end.
After that I took, and passed my grade 5 theory.
 

trimmy

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Thanks for the replies David & Mandy :thumb:

I have the AB guide to music theory, I'll order the other book and work on them, where would i get past test papers from ?
 

MandyH

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I also ordered mine from Amazon. I ordered the most recent set at the time (probably 2012 or 2011 now) but a local music shop might also stock them. You get the 3 exams that were set that year, plus the reserve exam, hence 4 exams in one paper. You can buy a paper set of each grade.
If you wanted advice on the music composition question, just ask here.
My sax teacher gave me a "formula" for the composition, which got me a good mark :)
 

PaulM

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Hello Trimmy,

I sat my grade 5 theory last Wednesday. Here's what I used and my thoughts:

  • ABRSM books; First steps in music theory and The AB guide to music theory; both by Eric Taylor. These are good as reference books, but are like printed mogadon if you try and use them to learn from. I've never fallen asleep as fast as when reading these. Good for insomniacs.
  • Take Five by Christopher Dunn. Recommended to me by a music teacher I met at a course. Brilliant book. Covers pretty much all you need to know for grade 5 and extremely well explained. If I could have only one theory book for the exam, it would be this.
  • ABRSM Music theory in practice workbooks and model answers. If you get the answers to these right, then you'll probably find the questions in the exam easier. They are a good and thorough workout.
  • Get as many past papers as you can lay your hands on. I worked through 4 years worth under simulated exam conditions; each year has 4 exams. After doing what constituted 16 mock exams it was unlikely there were going to be any unpleasant surprises on the night and there weren't.
Good luck.
 

Jeanette

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Slightly off topic but related. When I was taking my professional exams I found doing past papers an excellent way to revise. I certainly started to see a pattern in questions and what was expected in the model answers.

Jx
 

Jeanette

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Having started out determined not to sit any exams I am now pondering the theory exams to make me really concentrate and learn.

I am interested if people think grade 5 is the place to start or would it be easier to take small steps, and start with grade 1, less time invested for hopefully a quicker success and perhaps I'd be more likely to stick with the course and progress :)

Jx
 

trimmy

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No harm in aiming for grade 5, you know if you get stuck you have an abundance of help here
 

MandyH

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I would say it depends on how much music theory you already inherently understand from your instrument playing. I have done only grade 5, most of which will be straightforward if you have music theory knowledge from playing and if you understand the circle of fifths.
The only section I needed guidance on was the melody line composition. Otherwise everything is in the AB guide to music theory part 1, mentioned above.
 

Jeanette

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Thank you, will have a word with my tutor and probably buy some books and see what is involved ;)

Jx
 

Little My

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Five was the one and only theory exam I ever took (and passed very comfortably). I don't think you'll have any problems. It was one of the best things I ever did though I didn't realise it at the time - so useful for improvising and for transposing and generally understanding more.
 

MikeMorrell

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I failed the online 'will you pass grade 5?' quizzes miserably:(. Time to brush up!
 

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