IFR blog > Practice tips > Developing your ear > Which ear training workshop should i choose

Which ear training workshop should I choose?

Hello Mireia,

I love the IFR approach to ear training! I would like to enroll in one of your ear training workshops, but how can I decide which course might be more appropriate for me: "Ear Training for Musical Creativity" or "Recognizing Chords by Ear"? And, can I take them both at once?


Mireia's response:

Hi Andrew,

Thank you for reaching out. I’ll explain a little bit more about the two courses to help you decide which one is would suit you better.

Ear Training for Musical CreativityThe Ear Training for Musical Creativity workshop is focused on recognizing sounds and melodies by ear. The activities involve singing, playing and listening. Every week I’ll give you singing exercises, self-tests and also creative exercises with backing tracks to explore the sounds improvising with your instrument. The idea is to connect the music you hear or imagine to the music that comes out of your instrument. Through the organized exercises you will learn to feel the sounds of the major scale in relation to the key, know where they are located and find them right away on your instrument without having to fumble for the notes. To decide if this course would be valuable for you, the first question to ask is whether you are currently able to recognize the seven notes of the major scale in simple songs and melodies that are based in a major key. For example when you listen to children's songs, Christmas carols, etc., are you able to recognize the tonal numbers by ear? If that's still a challenge for you, then this course is a right fit.

Note: You can click HERE for full details.

Recognizing Chords by EarThe Recognizing Chords by Ear workshop is focused on chords and chord progressions. We are going to learn how chords feel in relation to the tonal center, to hear the individual notes that build the chord, to hear the roots, to weave melodies across chord changes and to harmonize melodies. It’s not a prerequisite to take the other course before you can take this one. But you will take more advantage of the course if you already have the ability of recognizing the sounds of the major scale by ear relatively easily, because that’s what’s going to enable you to hear and identify the notes inside the chords. So if you can already play simple melodies by ear and you are more interested about learning to hear chords and chord changes, this course on Recognizing Chords by Ear is a right fit.

Note: You can click HERE for full details.

I love that you want to take both workshops! But I suggest you take them one at a time and I'll explain why. A big part of what makes these workshops successful is that you'll be assimilating the sounds in a particular order. So for example in the first week we'll be working with just a few sounds, and I want you to be able to give your full attention to just these sounds. So if you're trying to take another class in parallel, you won't get the benefit of this immersion and I think it wouldn't be fair to you. So as much as I would love to work with you on both courses, we really need to do them one at a time for you to get the full benefit. The best place to start is Ear Training for Musical Creativity. This will give you a great foundation in ear training that will prepare you to be very successful with the second course as well.

If you have more questions about the courses or you need further help in deciding which one is right for you, please write to me at mireia@improviseforreal.com. I’ll be happy to help. ;)