11 Best Songwriting Courses

Songwriting is an art form that has captivated audiences for centuries, with the power to evoke emotions, tell stories, and leave a lasting impact. Whether you’re a seasoned musician or a budding songwriter, honing your craft is essential to creating compelling and memorable compositions. In today’s ever-evolving music landscape, online courses have emerged as invaluable resources, offering aspiring songwriters the opportunity to learn from industry professionals and refine their skills from the comfort of their own homes.

This article explores 11 of the best online songwriting courses available, each designed to cater to different levels of expertise and areas of focus. From comprehensive programs that cover the entire songwriting process to specialized courses that delve into the intricacies of lyric writing or melody construction, these offerings provide a wealth of knowledge and practical guidance.

1. Lyrics Writing Course by Jacob Carter

The Lyrics Writing Course is an online program created by lyricist Jacob Carter to teach aspiring songwriters how to write compelling and impactful lyrics. The comprehensive course consists of six modules covering various aspects of lyric writing:

  • Module 1: Finding Your Inspiration – Explores different creative writing methods to help students find inspiration and discover their unique lyrical style.
  • Module 2: Lyrical Structure and Style – Analyzes famous song lyrics and songwriters to understand writing styles, structures, rhyme patterns, and melody construction.
  • Module 3: How to Write Lyrics – Provides guidance on turning ideas into complete song drafts and refining lyrics that resonate with audiences.
  • Module 4: Developing Songwriting Depth – Focuses on using literary tools like imagery, metaphors, and characterization to enhance lyrics and convey deeper messages. Also includes analysis of famous song lyrics.
  • Module 5: Understanding Genre – Explores the common themes, patterns, and styles of different music genres to help students write genre-specific lyrics.
  • Module 6: Learn How to Co-write – Covers the important skill of collaborating with other artists, songwriters, and teams for co-writing songs.

The course includes HD video lessons, printable resources, hands-on exercises, and industry insider tips from Jacob Carter’s decade of experience as a lyricist. Students can study at their own pace and earn a certificate upon completion. One-on-one mentoring is also available for an additional fee.

The course has received positive reviews from students who found it informative, engaging, and effective in improving their lyric-writing abilities. They appreciated the emphasis on developing depth, understanding genre conventions, and gaining confidence in their unique songwriting styles.

With its comprehensive curriculum, practical exercises, and expert guidance from Jacob Carter, the Lyrics Writing Course aims to provide aspiring songwriters with the skills and knowledge necessary to craft captivating and meaningful lyrics.

You can check out his free guide on lyrics writing before joining his course. 

2. The Art of Songwriting – The Open University (FutureLearn)

This free 6-week course on FutureLearn introduces the fundamentals of songwriting through video lectures, articles, and practical exercises. Learners explore setting words to rhythm, crafting melodies, working with chord progressions, song forms and structures, and arranging songs. The course features insights from established musicians like Martin Simpson and guest experts. By the end, learners will have gone through the process of writing their own original song.

3. The Lyric Writer’s Workroom – Songcraft

The Lyric Writer’s Workroom is a comprehensive online course focused solely on lyric writing techniques. Through video lessons, writing prompts, and exercises, students learn tools for generating ideas, using vivid language, crafting rhythms and rhymes, and structuring lyrics effectively. The self-paced course provides personalized feedback on lyrics from an experienced instructor.

4. Lyric Writing: Tools and Strategies – Berklee Online

Taught by renowned Berklee professor Pat Pattison, this 12-week course covers essential skills for writing impactful lyrics. Students learn how to generate strong concepts, choose evocative words, create rhythms with language, utilize different rhyming techniques, and contrast sections for emotional impact. The course aims to help writers at any level brainstorm more freely and structure lyrics with intentionality.

5. Songwriting: Writing the Lyrics – Berklee Online (Coursera)

Another course by Pat Pattison on Coursera, this beginner-friendly class introduces an efficient process for expressing ideas and emotions through lyrics. Key concepts include prosody, line lengths, rhyme schemes, melodic rhythm, and phrasing. Through peer feedback, students refine writing skills to enhance their songs’ narrative and emotional resonance. The course is ideal for those new to songwriting or wanting to analyze their process.

6. Songwriting Simplified: Music Theory, Melody & Creativity – Udemy

This comprehensive Udemy course covers the full songwriting process from music theory and chord progressions to melody writing and lyrics. Instructor Melissa Peirce, a #1 hit songwriter, teaches techniques for inspired lyric writing, memorable melodies, song structures, and breaking into the industry. The course includes PDF resources and personalized feedback to help students write a complete song by the end.

7. How to Write Lyrics – The Song Foundry

This course, created by Ed Bell, is designed to help songwriters of all levels improve their lyric writing skills. It covers essential topics such as rhyme schemes, structuring lyrics, writing singable lyrics, and prosody—the art of fitting lyrics seamlessly to a melody. The course includes over five hours of video lessons and a detailed course booklet, providing a comprehensive foundation for learning and creativity. Students will learn practical strategies for brainstorming, drafting, and refining lyrics, making it a valuable resource for both beginners and experienced songwriters.

8. Songwriting: Lyric Writing – Elevate with ICMP

This course from the Institute of Contemporary Music Performance (ICMP) focuses entirely on lyric writing. It covers various elements such as structure, rhyming schemes, and storytelling. The course includes interactive elements like writing to briefs, which simulate real-world songwriting scenarios. Students will explore different lyric writing strategies, such as free writing and storyboarding, to diversify their skills and learn how to write songs from assorted starting points. The course is designed to help songwriters at any level refine their skills and develop a deeper understanding of lyrics and lyric writing.

9. The Singer Songwriter – Berklee Online (Coursera)

This comprehensive course is part of Berklee’s Singer-Songwriter Specialization on Coursera. It is designed for singer-songwriters and focuses on both lyric writing and performance. The course covers the entire songwriting process, from generating ideas and writing lyrics to performing and recording original music. Students will learn key concepts such as prosody, rhyme schemes, melodic rhythm, and phrasing. The course also includes practical exercises and peer feedback to help students refine their writing skills and enhance their songs’ narrative and emotional resonance.

10. Commercial Songwriting Techniques – Berklee Online

Authored by Andrea Stolpe, this course focuses on techniques used in commercial songwriting. It is ideal for those looking to write catchy, mainstream lyrics and includes insights into industry standards for crafting hit songs. The course covers creating patterns of content that help forge memorable melodies and lyrics that connect emotionally with listeners. It combines theory with concrete skill-building exercises, making it beneficial for songwriters aiming to enter the commercial music industry.

11. Writing Song Lyrics: Create and Combine with Melody – City Lit

This course is designed for songwriters and instrumentalists who find creating a melody easy but struggle with writing lyrics. It covers both basic and advanced techniques in lyric and melody writing, emphasizing the interplay between lyrics and melody. The course includes practical work and collaborations, where students generate original ideas, create melodic lines, and structure and edit their lyrics effectively. By the end of the course, students will have created original lyrics and melodies and will have worked towards recording their songs.