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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Fundamentals of Music Theory by The University of Edinburgh

862 ratings
233 reviews

About the Course

This course will introduce students to the theory of music, providing them with the skills needed to read and write Western music notation, as well as to understand, analyse, and listen informedly. It will cover material such as pitches and scales, intervals, clefs, rhythm, form, meter, phrases and cadences, and basic harmony. This course covers the fundamentals of Western music theory, from the absolute basics to some more advanced concepts and, as such, is the perfect course for beginners and more experienced musicians alike. Follow us on twitter @musictheorymooc #edmusictheory...

Top reviews


Aug 23, 2017

It was a very nice course. We were able to understand the basics of music theory and how the notations and chords work. Thank you so much to the entire staff of Edinburgh University and Coursera..:-)


Apr 12, 2019

As a Buzzok player and a software engineer, this course encourages me to play on my instrument differently and to think in a new web application for music discipline !!\n\nThank you very much

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1 - 25 of 226 Reviews for Fundamentals of Music Theory

By Sungbeom H

Nov 21, 2018

First of all, I want to thank all my colleagues for grading my final project!:)

We made it!!


This course consists of 6 weeks, but the difficulty level varies in each week.

First and second week: Easy!

Third and fourth week: Difficult as hell

Fifth week: Intermediate

Sixth week: Final exam & Peer grading

It took three sessions for me to complete this course and it wasn't easy at all.

From the third week, I had to search the internet(ex. YouTube) to fully understand the lesson and pass the quizzes.

I'm a slow learner, so it felt really challenging.

But all this being said, I can tell you that all of this was an essential part of learning valuable concepts and theories.

It was tough, but rewarding.

This is a great course for everyone who has a passion for music, and the key to successful completion is to learn consistently.

Visit Coursera every single day and learn every single day.

No matter how slow you are, as long as you keep going, you will get there.




In week six, try submitting the final exam part 2 as fast as you can,

because it gets much harder to get a peer-grade as the time goes by.

If your final exam isn't graded yet and the course is about to finish,

go to discussion forum in week 6 and ask your colleagues for help.

Here's a small tip: If you find other colleagues' SOS on the forum, help them out and leave a comment that you just graded their assignments and ask to grade your work!

By Amanda M

Dec 16, 2018

Way too difficult and they don't teach in a way that will help you remember the content that you learn. It's taught way too fast and the final exam is a killer!!! It starts out really simple and boring and then it changes into crazy hard college level work!!

By Lola E

Apr 07, 2019

Very good course for people who want a general overview of music theory basics, particularly as a foundation from which to start from. The first week is slow, but the second immediately picks up pace (and it is a *fundamentals* course, so starts such that everybody can understand it). Lectures are very well organised.

By SCP001C

Mar 31, 2019

Perfect music course for beginner!

By Jonathan I L A

Oct 25, 2018

Lectures are often too short and they don't explain the concepts well, which should not be an actual problem if the quizzes were not so difficult. I understand students must make some research and spend time understanding the concepts, but the difficulty of the quizzes is tremendous compared to the little amount of detail and information that is provided in the course. The contents are not well organized and very often you are referred to wikipedia and links, which are way more useful so if you are a begginer don't waste your time on this course and learn the basic concepts directly from wikipedia.

By Sergio D J

May 21, 2018

The only parts that are well explained are those by Dr Zack & Dr Nikki. There are HUGE gaps between the content and the quizes, and significant parts of the music theory are left aside. For the most complex parts, the supplemental material is just an enumeration of overwhelming links to wikipedia or (those are easier to understand, at least). Explanation to quiz answers are only provided in the first quiz (introduction).

By Mary A V

Jan 04, 2018

Avoid this course. After lesson 1 it begins to fall apart. The explanations become harder to understand and then in Lesson 3 it's as if the instructor completely forgets to teach and just refers you out to online or other sources. Then, the test in Lesson 3 is barely related to the lesson itself. The best lesson was Lesson 1, and if they had stuck with that combination of instructors for the full course I think it would have been a much better course. But they didn't, and it wasn't.

By Fernando J K P

Dec 31, 2017

Muito bom o curso de teoria musical, so faltava a legenda em português, mas o curso segue um rumo bem explicativo, gostei!

By Deleted A

Oct 28, 2017

Be warned. There is no way that this is a beginner course. It is really a mishmash with most of the lectures almost too elementary, simplistic and disorganized and then suddenly in week 3 you will be faced with quizzes that (in the admission of the course lecturers themselves) are at third year university level. The final quiz is just too over the top for any beginner to even contemplate, while the final lecture in Week 5 is such a mishmash of poorly filmed and poorly recorded material that Coursera should be ashamed of itself for allowing it to be shown. I assume that the glowing ratings by some are either people who have only audited and not attempted the quizzes or have already a solid background in music theory. Several of the other comments show a similar degree of disillusionment to what I have faced and it really is a pity since the idea of providing an education is to encourage rather than discourage. The University of Edinburgh should be warned that that publishing this weird mix of childish elementary and unprofessional lectures along with quizzes that bear little relation to the material taught will only tarnish their reputation. I really sympathize with the people in the discussion forum in Week 6 who seem so lost and frustrated. Best advice I can give --- find another course. The University of Michigan seems to have on

By William K

Mar 11, 2017

After going through each lesson, week by week and thinking I was really learning something, but I can't pass the first exam (even with my notes and Google) and almost had a panic attack when I looked at the second exam.

I feel like I wasted fifty dollars and hours of my life in order to get what little belief I had that I might have actually learned something come crashing down.

By Christopher L

Jan 11, 2017

One way (approach) to 'teaching' data shows only that you know data but haven't designed multiple ways of teaching it. No, feedback from instructors, directly, makes it hard to obtain conceptual understandings. ie, as soon as you become lost with the one-way taught week, no way to grasp the following weeks. There could be a higher rate of success AND enjoyment of learning, if more thought were put into 'How to teach' the material. Been playing music for over 30 years and am failing from week 4 on. This shouldn't be as confusing as Coursera has made it. Disappointed and DISCOURAGED!

By Deleted A

Oct 11, 2016

The course material itself is enjoyable, but the quizzes don't work properly. The feedback given to the same responses between retakes is contradictory.

By Joseph N

Jun 05, 2019

Some of the pictures in the quizzes the name of the pictures reveals the answer to the question

By Priyanka

Jun 02, 2019

It is an excellent course for we students to understand the core and foundation of music theory. Extremely professional tutors who help us understand every lecture easily.

I can't thank Coursera enough, for this oppurtuniy.


May 26, 2019

clear and simple explanation


May 24, 2019

Although there is a lot of useful material covered, there was also a lot of hand waving and redirecting to and wikipedia instead of explaining the material thoroughly in their own words. The difficulty ramps up beyond what I would have considered a beginners course. The quizzes are disproportionately complex, especially week 4 onward. Instead of reviewing the simple ideas as they were commonly presented, in the key of C, it feels as though the quizzes were designed to stump experts. There were many trick questions, and multiple choices that are not explicitly labeled to inform you that more than one answer is required. If you already know music theory and just need a review, this course may serve that purpose for you. I would suggest nearly any other source as an alternative for someone who is just trying to learn music theory.

By mehmet c v

May 22, 2019

It is perfect for beginner musicians.

By Afrocentric J J

May 21, 2019

For beginning level music theory it does go in depth with the material. However, sometimes the tests or assignments will have certain things that were not mentioned in the course that the student must use common sense with. Overall a challenging and knowledgeable course.

By Vishal M

May 09, 2019

An exceptional overview of the basics of Music Theory and a great curriculum organization provided in this course really did help me understand the curriculum better. Thank you to all the teachers in this course that helped me to learn something new!

By Maen M

Apr 12, 2019

As a Buzzok player and a software engineer, this course encourages me to play on my instrument differently and to think in a new web application for music discipline !!

Thank you very much

By Geoff L

Apr 03, 2019

Very comprehensive course. It may be a little bit difficult for a total beginner, but insightful if you follow the instruction and work on the course materials.

By Liwei Z

Mar 31, 2019

No explaination for the answers in quizs.


Mar 27, 2019

This was an excellently paced course. The practice exercises were slightly difficult, but overall it was highly informative and delivered exactly what I expected.

By 唐汉镛

Mar 26, 2019

This Course is very nice!

By Rachid B

Mar 14, 2019

Very Interesting formation