Shop Member Center Document Center

The History of Online Learning at BHS

November 7, 2019

Our journey to bring Harmony University to the masses

Our new HU Online learning portal was 5 years in the making

Some of you are aware of the recent announcement that the BHS is now offering online education through the HU Online learning portal. We are pretty excited about this venture, as it represents several years of hard work to get us to this point.

How it all began

For many years, the BHS employed music educators to visit chapters. This required a large staff, many hours on the road, and infrequent visits. This was hard on the staff and chapters could go years without getting any sort of contact from Harmony Hall. Regional trainings were available, but other than Harmony College (as it was then called), few ever received education and training from headquarters staff.

2014 saw an attempt to shift training online. BHS staff member Steve Scott was an early instructor in this format. The only thing available were virtual instructor-led classes. The BHS YouTube channel had several hundred hours of content, but little in the way of formal education. These early efforts were a start, but had little widespread participation.

2018 saw the next phase of online education. A dozen classes were offered and as many produced educational videos. The BHS YouTube had more than a million hours of content and several thousand hours of educational content mostly capture content from Harmony University, including our very popular warm up series and our song teaching videos, like this one of Kirk Young teaching Pentatonix’s Sing. This era of online education was still being tested, as the educators at BHS tried to determine the most effective delivery method for online education.

Where we are now

Today we are fortunate to utilize a learning management system that allows learners to take courses in a variety of subjects, including our popular Barbershop Arranging series (Beginning, Intermediate, Advanced, and Female and Mixed Barbershop), leadership, musicianship, and performance classes. Learners can also watch one of dozens of on-demand videos (or subscribe to get access to all of the videos).

For music educators or those looking to bundle courses, our Learning Paths offer an avenue to earn continuing education units (CEUs), graduate credits, or certificates of completion.

We even offer voice and conducting lessons!

We hope that you participate in these online offerings. The educators at BHS are constantly seeking out the best in barbershop education, faculty, and resources to bring you the content and training you crave. Is there content you’d like to see? Let us know at education@barbershop.org.

Visit education.barbershop.org and see what we’ve got!