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An introduction to music theory free course icon Level

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
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Start writing fiction free course icon Level

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
Start writing fiction: characters and stories free course icon Level

History & The Arts 

Start writing fiction: characters and stories

Start writing fiction is a free course that helps you to get started with your own fiction writing, focusing on the central skill of creating characters.

Free course
24 hrs
Janis Joplin and the Sexual Revolution free course icon Level

History & The Arts 

Janis Joplin and the Sexual Revolution

This free course, Janis Joplin and the Sexual Revolution, will introduce you to issues around the sexual revolution and how this, and other contemporary social revolutions of the 1960s, impacted upon American rock musician Janis Joplin (1943-1970). You will investigate the extent to which the contemporary sexual revolution brought about greater gender equality for female popular musicians such as Janis Joplin, and consider whether it might be more accurate to view this as a superficial revolution which masked the reality of continued sexual conservatism. You do not need to play an instrument, to sing, to read music or have any prior musical knowledge to be able to complete this course. This OpenLearn course is an adapted extract from the Open University course A113 Revolutions.

Free course
3 hrs
St David’s Day and the role of the crowd in perceptions of Welsh musical identity article icon

History & The Arts 

St David’s Day and the role of the crowd in perceptions of Welsh musical identity

St David’s Day is always an occasion when ideas about Welsh musicality get repeated. Dr Martin V Clarke talks about the sporting crowd and the supporting role it plays in positioning Wales as the ‘land of song’.  

Article
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TV, Radio & Events 

Full Steam Ahead

It’s Full Steam Ahead for historians Ruth Goodman, Alex Langlands and Peter Ginn as they bring back to life the golden age of steam and explore how the Victorian railways created modern Britain.

TV Programme
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
The debate on the origins of the First World War 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. This article explores the origins of the Great War.

Article
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The Somme: The German perspective article icon

History & The Arts 

The Somme: The German perspective

How do Germans view the Battle of The Somme? This article explores reactions to the most famous battle of the First World War. 

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