Online Guitar Lessons – Do They Work?

With the growing popularity of the guitar and youtube, there are countless guitar lesson related channels, videos, courses, article and even full websites dedicated to teaching the guitar. But many people (usually parents) are quite sceptical about whether or not they work.

So, do online guitar lessons work? The short answer is yes. But it really depends on the student and the approach that the teacher takes. But there are two main types of online lessons.

Skype Guitar Lessons

These are live video calls with a guitar teacher. Students can get real feedback from someone who’s watching and listening to their playing. They can also ask questions and receive answers straight away – no waiting for back and forth emails. Skype lessons are engaging because they utilise technology and give students the opportunity to use their iPads for something educations and productive.

Some young students struggle with Skype lessons. Usually these students rely on having a real life person in front of them to be engaged and often require the teacher to literally walk up to their guitar and point to where they need to place their fingers. I’ve also found that students with learning impairments or disabilities might struggle to learn online – at least at first. Once students pick up many basic aspects, like proper picking technique and how to read tablature, they can usually learn very well via Skype.

Many people seem to feel as though Skype lessons are a scam where the teacher takes your money and vanishes into the night. But that just isn’t the case when it comes to an established music school. People also think they Skype won’t work well for teaching guitar, but I always come back to youtube – people are always learning from the thousands of video lessons on there. So if they work, then surely a real live call with a teacher can work even better.

Video Guitar Lessons

These are pre-recorded videos that students can follow on their own accord. They’re great because students can pause, rewind and rewatch anything from the video. They can learn at any time and don’t have to rely on the availability of a teacher.

Pre-recorded video lessons are ideal for students who are self-motivated, or who can follow directions without having someone interact with them. Shy students typically prefer them to Skype lessons because there’s less personal interaction.

The Verdict

There’s definitely a place in this world for Skype Lessons, Video Lessons and in-person guitar lessons. It’s really a matter of the teaching style, the course content and how suitable the teacher is for that style of learning. My advice is to be willing to give it a go.

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