An introduction to music theory Copyrighted image Icon Copyright: Used with permission free course icon Level 1 icon

History & The Arts

An introduction to music theory

Gain an understanding of the basic building blocks of musical theory and notation. This free course, An introduction to music theory, will introduce you to music staves, clefs, rhythmic and pitch values, rhythmic metre and time signatures. This OpenLearn course provides an introduction to music theory pitched at a level equivalent to Grades 1–3 of the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music theory exams. You can test your understanding as you proceed by completing simple multiple-choice questions.

Free course
8 hrs
Start writing fiction Copyrighted image Icon Copyright: Used with permission free course icon Level 1 icon

History & The Arts

Start writing fiction

Have you always wanted to write, but never quite had the courage to start? This free course, Start writing fiction, will give you an insight into how authors create their characters and settings. You will also be able to look at the different genres for fiction.

Free course
12 hrs
Getting started on classical Latin Copyrighted image Icon Copyright: The Art Archive/Alamy free course icon Level 1 icon

History & The Arts

Getting started on classical Latin

This free course, Getting started on classical Latin, has been developed in response to requests from learners who had had no contact with Latin before and who felt they would like to spend a little time preparing for the kind of learning that studying a classical language involves. The course will give you a taster of what is involved in the very early stages of learning Latin and will offer you the opportunity to put in some early practice.

Free course
10 hrs
A reader's guide to Midnight's Children Creative commons image Icon Fronteiras do Pensamento under Creative Commons BY-SA 4.0 license audio icon

History & The Arts 

A reader's guide to Midnight's Children

As BBC Radio 4 launches an ambitious dramatisation of the work, discover Salman Rushdie's 1981 Booker Prize-winning novel Midnight's Children.

Audio
5 mins
Do fictional characters shift perceptions of transgender people? Creative commons image Icon Disney ABC Television Group under Creative Commons BY-ND 4.0 license video icon

History & The Arts 

Do fictional characters shift perceptions of transgender people?

New research in America suggests that characters like Laverne Cox's Sophia Burset in Orange Is The New Black may have more impact on how society reacts to transgender people, than the reported experiences of real people. Erica L Rosensthal and Traci Gillig share some of their findings.

Video
5 mins
Troy Story: Homer's Iliad and Odyssey Creative commons image Icon the Open University under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0 license video icon

History & The Arts 

Troy Story: Homer's Iliad and Odyssey

Interested in Greek myths? We've condensed the epic narrative of Homer's poems the Iliad and the Odyssey into short animations voiced by the dulcet tones of Don Warrington.

Video
10 mins
Living Shakespeare Copyrighted image Icon Copyright: BBC BBC World News

History & The Arts 

Living Shakespeare

Why is Shakespeare so widely acclaimed across the globe? Our new series with the BBC takes us on a worldwide journey to discover people's personal experiences with the Bard's works. 

TV Programme
The debate on the origins of the First World War Creative commons image Icon By Edward N. Jackson (US Army Signal Corps) (U.S. Signal Corps photo) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons under Creative-Commons license article icon

History & The Arts 

The debate on the origins of the First World War

The way historians have viewed the causes of WWI has changed in the hundred years since war broke out.

Article
The Somme: The German perspective Copyrighted image Icon Copyright: BBC article icon

History & The Arts 

The Somme: The German perspective

How do Germans view the Battle of The Somme?

Article
Death on the eve of Armistice Copyrighted image Icon Copyright: BBC audio icon

History & The Arts 

Death on the eve of Armistice

Flu and a last gasp of fighting claimed lives even as the First World War was coming to a close. Michael Palin spoke to two experts to find out why.

Audio
10 mins