How much time to spend on each module or lesson

Currently working through the beginner course (floundering midway through level 3) and have paid for a years access to theory.

Im looking for advice as to how to follow this course, how quickly to progress. I whizzed through the first two grades as much of that had been covered in the beginner course. But now at grade three, there seems more to learn and embed, major scale theory and pattern, key signatures etc.

How quickly should I move on through each step of this? Should I be fully confident in the major scale formula before proceeding to the next lesson? How about the major scale pattern? Should I be spending a few weeks practicing / embedding this before I progress on with the course.

Any suggestions on how I should pace the learning? Like, aim for a module a month, or a lesson a week etc? Or does it not really matter, and just plod along.

Hi Joe,

There is nothing meaningful to say about many people learn in to many ways with different goals and competences …there are too many variables such as how much time do you spend on it and how well focused are you, do you learn quickly or do you need a little more time than average, are you quickly satisfied or do you want to know things really well… in any case, lay a good foundation before you move on to the next thing and end the lesson behind you… feel free to look over the fence, but make sure you have a good portion of skills on the material you will pass, otherwise it will be increasingly difficult along the way…

Time is Relative, I once heard someone say… :wink:



here is what @Richard_close2u said once

Beginner Grade 1 has 75 lessons plus essential consolidation. Each lesson requires at least one day of practice time but by the end of Grade 1, in Modules 5, 6 and 7, I would say that to do the learning justice and really get solid in the basics, each lesson should respectfully be given several days or a week or more, each of the seven modules probably starting at one week for module 1 up to several weeks for module 7. I would even (albeit exaggeratedly to make a point) go so far as to suggest treating each module number as a guide to the weeks required.
Modules 1 to 7 = 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 5 + 6 + 7 = 28 weeks. That is more than six months just there


Excellent phrase! I think I’ll do just that…have a little look ahead, but keep practicing. I do find the theory aspect more daunting, not sure why… probably subconsciously linking it to school.


The theory does seem a little dry at first. But Justin presents it well in an applicable way that helps a lot. However, as I find myself at a point where I am thinking more and more about the note relationships in a chord, on the neck, in a piece and so on, I am really finding the theory helpful and much more interesting. It is worth putting some effort into the background.

I went through the first 4 grades of the theory course pretty quickly. Over a couple of months perhaps. But, I have gone over it again a bunch over the last two years as it touches more of what I practice and want to know about.

I would say that over a 2.5 year time span I have at least reviewed nearly all the material Justin has in his theory course but am still going back to it as I play and get a deeper understanding (any understanding…) and will do so for, well, probably the rest of my life.


The major scale is where everything about music stems from. All your scales, modes, chords, arpeggios, etc. Do you need to know it backwards and farwards to play guitar? No but it will make everythink make sense as you move farward.
How long you spend is up to you. Joshua @Jamolay has the good method. Keep reviewing things as you’re playing progesses and apply the theory to your playing.

I’ve always found it easier to learn things on guitar first then apply the theory. Some like to learn the theory first the apply it to their playing. Which ever works for you is the best way and take your time, you don’t need to know everything all at once. That just gets confusing.


I spend hours. But I really struggle. I also do this as a break from playing.
I feel it’s a personal thing. What ever you do I wish you well


crap level 3 … i didnt read enough my bad … i dont have the sheet for level 3 :confused:

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I’m just so slow.

I finished grade 1 in ~6 months, Grade 2 in ~12 months, Grade 3 in ~18 months, then ~6 months consolidating everything before beginning Grade 4.

Practice 30-60 minutes per day, 5-7 days a week.


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I like to do a preliminary review even if things are further ahead. Then I have an idea of what is coming, what to pay attention to, and where to go when I need more depth. Justin’s guitar theory course is great for that. I listened to nearly all the video (not watching, honest!) during my commutes. Repeated some several times. Now, as I come to thing in my playing that are relevant, I go back (not while driving, honest!) and dig deeper and have broader understanding.

Not a race, not even a marathon. Just a process to learn. What’s the rush? If the point is to learn, taking the time to really do that is totally worth it. Enjoy where you are.

“Fast” Eddie set a nice solid and steady pace. That is awesome and dedicated. I bet it serves him well. I was similar, but probably took 2 years for grades1-3 and consolidated almost another full year, because I went through the grades a bit too fast.


How long do you practice each Module? 4 weeks and you double on module 2 the time and so on.

I practice each module until I feel I have the new skill or concept understood and are able to perform the actions on the guitar consistently.

For example, if the module is teaching a riff, song or set-piece excercise, I’ll keep it as a 5 minute practice item until I can play it competently at a slow bpm and then at 10 bpm higher than that slow bpm. IMHO, this shows that I truly have it “under my fingers”. That riff/song/set-piece then becomes part of my repertoire, and I practice it occasionally during my 5-minute warm-up at the beginning of each practice, increasing the bpm when capable until I can play it at the “correct” speed.

Sometimes, this only takes 2-3 practices, sometimes it takes many months. For example, the “Peter Gunn” riff lesson only took me ~2 weeks to “PASS”, but the “Lick’n’Riff” lesson took me ~3 months.

Hope this helps.


I’m also new to this theory thing but have been playing guitar for years. Last week I completed module 3, really enjoying the course so far and seem to be picking up the theory OK. My concern is committing the notes of the fretboard or scales to memory. Is it really important to memorize these to move forward, also does anybody have any tips for doing this more easily? Thanks

@ Iandraper IMHO, this is the priority of learning:

  1. Open strings

  2. 1st 5 frets of each string

  3. 1-12 fret of low E and A strings (hint: the high e string is the same as the low E string)

  4. All the rest

The first 3 items are easy enough to learn with a little effort. To get to level 4, search the web for ideas. There are lots of different ways people do this.

Levels 1 and 3 are enough to allow you to play lots of things easily. Level 2 helps you to connect basic music theory to the fretboard, level 4 is good for more advanced things like using triads, arpeggios, advanced use of CAGED shapes, etc.

I’ve been learning for 4 years now, and I have not reached level 4 yet (I’m competent in levels 1-3). I’ve been spending 5 minutes every other practice session on achieving level 4 for about 6 months now. My guess is that I’ll achieve level 4 in about another year or so. Not knowing all the notes is not an obstacle to me advancing yet.


I personally don’t think it is. It’s one of those skill you learn as you need them.

I wouldn’t say it’s easier but once you start learning triads on the string sets eBG and BGD you’ll learn where the root notes are on these strings. Once you’ve learnt the Root notes you’ll learn the 3rd, 5th and 7th interval of each for soloing and chord tone targeting.
Like I mentioned earlier it’s one of those skills that just happens as your journey moves forward.
You’ll also find knowing the interval patterns is more important than the notes themselves

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Not sure if it really helps, but i find this fretboard trainer a fun way to kill ten minutes. Think I probably learnt about it from somewhere in this forum.

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Thank you all for your comments and advice on learning the note of the neck. Looks like I have some work to do, it’ll be fun.