Sunday, April 14, 2013

Guitar lessons: Private or Group? Which is better? The results may surprise you.

For many years I taught guitar privately believing that the one on one experience was superior because I could focus on the individual needs of the student. Logic told me that if I am teaching several students at one time it would be of less value to each student. Such logic was not based on any real evidence because up until that point private is all I had ever done. I had simply not even challenged this belief and probably never would have if certain circumstances had not arisen. 

What I discovered about group learning.

Over a decade ago now I started experimenting firstly with adult groups and later groups of children. It wasn't easy for me as a teacher because I was out of my comfort zone. Initially my group teaching was quite poor so I did a lot of research and also attended seminars to learn how to engage groups. It didn't take long before the obvious advantages to group learning were revealed. There have been several studies done on 'collaborative learning' that show people learn better in small groups compared to private lessons. Check out this paper on Cooperative Learning

Small groups are ideal

The group dynamic has a certain energy about it which you don't get from private lessons. It does require a skilled teacher but the results in my experience exceed private learning. I think ideally guitar students should learn in small groups and then supplement with the occasional private lesson when required. At the very least students should form a peer group to share ideas, jam and to generally motivate each other.

The G4 Guitar Method

The G4 Guitar Method is a structured method of learning how to play guitar and can be taught in groups or privately. Its a unique system built on 27 years of research and experience based on a series of checklists. To view a video and learn more please visit our website at

1 comment:

Wolruss said...

G'day Dave, I have paid the $10 special price for lessons on the 3rd April but as yet to hear anything about the lessons