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Are Online Music Lessons Equivalent To In-Person Music Lessons?

As times change and technology quickly advances, we have seen a vast difference in the world of sales and services and how they are offered and provided to customers. With this advancing online market, customers, teachers and retailers alike have found themselves asking the same question: are online lessons equivalant to in-person lessons? Music, with its intricacies of expression and technique, presents a unique case for exploration in the realm of remote learning. How convenient is too convenient, and can we get to a point where we sacrifice quality for flexibility? 

1. Convenience Vs. Commitment 
2. Personalization and Guidance
3. Connection and Forming Bonds 
4. Focus and Intention 
5. Costs Vs. Value

Convenience Vs. Commitment

Though convenient due to the lack of travel and how they are oftentimes built around your own schedule, online lessons do require a particular set of skills that differ from traditional in-person lessons. In order to effectively learn online, you do need a particular level of self-discipline, time management and accountability as you only have yourself to answer to. Not having an outside commitment to uphold allows you to more easily justify skipping lessons, forgetting to practice, or adapting a particular lesson plan that is more effective in it's original form. The convenience of learning from your living room is over-shadowed by the benefits of leaving your home for a lesson and having a professional personally guide you through your education. 

Personalization and Guidance 

Not only does learning in person provide more of a guarantee of quality, well-educated teachers, but your lesson plans become more personalized to you; your interests, your currently skill level, and your goals. When you work one-on-one with a teacher privately, they are able to ensure that the generic lesson plans that you are looking at are tailored specifically to your individual needs to allow the most chance for genuine progression and goal-setting. With your teacher, you can express your goals and your dreams and they, with their experience and knowledge, can guide you to the surest and most effective way to get there. Though the base material, and what you are learning, may look very similar to online lessons, having that personal guide and mentor to bring you through that material is irreplaceable. 


Connection and Forming Bonds

Much like traditional education, most students agree that going into school versus learning online is much more effective and fun, as it is a chance to form friendships and connect with fellow students and like-minded individuals. These connections are even more impactful at a music school, as you are more likely to form friendships with others with the same interests as you, on the same journey of learning. Having a friend to learn with makes the act of learning more desirable and attainable! Especially at a school that holds recitals and events, we oftentimes see long-lasting friendships form that go beyond the classroom and into the world of creativity and creation. Not only do you connect with new friends, but with your instructors. Music teachers can work with the same students for many years. If you think about how a student can form a bond with their english or art teacher at school, imagine how strong the bond is with a teacher that extends beyond the singular grade or school they teach at, where the student can take lessons with the same teacher for as long as they want to.

Focus and Intention

You may have noticed during the pandemic and online learning, that it can be really hard for a student to focus at the computer for too long, or to absorb the information they are learning as easily as when they are in the classroom. Getting into the mindset of "I am sitting down and I am setting this time aside to learn something" is much more difficult to attain in your own personal home, where you usually put the work and learning aside to relax and unwind or play. The intention to stick to it and to learn becomes much more difficult due to the lack of focus. When you leave the house for your lesson, you are making a commitment and you are forming an intention to follow through for yourself and for others.

Cost Vs. Value

On average, the cost of online music lessons is generally higher than the cost of in-person lessons in the classroom. While the precise reason for this is unknown, it may be due to the fact that a lot of online lessons are taught by influencers or musicians with a vast following who are able to ask for more due to the demand placed upon them as individuals. At a music school, you get much more for less cost without compromising quality or education. This is because the school is able to budget for multiple teachers, resources, tools, and events that all encompass the experience as a whole of music education. 


Conclusion

Though we offer both in-person and online lessons, we have found that a majority of our students only take advantage of the online platform if they are sick, or need a makeup lesson during a different lesson time but can't make it into the studio. During the pandemic, our music school was 100% online. Currently, in 2024, only 1.12% of our students have remained online and 98.88% are back to in-person learning. We have seen the value and the many benefits of building music education together, and sharing our students and teachers talents and gifts with each other and with the community. 

 

The Octave Music Centre offers lessons for:



guitar, bass, drums, piano, vocals, viola, violin, flute, ukelele lessons at The Octave Music Centre


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