The PULSE Composition Unit launched at the end of this summer, and it’s packed with fun, educational, and brand spanking new interactive notation writing capabilities. What does “interactive notation writing capabilities” even mean? Using the power of Noteflight, we can now embed interactive notation examples of theoretical concepts in the PULSE unit books!

What is Noteflight you ask? And why is it so great? The first thing to know is that Noteflight is an online music writing application that lets you create, view, print, and hear professional quality music notation, right in your web browser. Through the powers of Javascript and other web-scripting libraries, you can compose using interactive staves, notes, time signatures, dynamic conventions, and more! With Noteflight, you now have a way to digitally compose a score and share it with your teachers, classmates, and friends.

Every PULSE user now has access to Noteflight, with thanks to a single sign-on within PULSE.

This means that through PULSE and Noteflight, you can collaborate on composition projects with anyone you want, and from any computer! If you’ve ever used Google Docs to work on a paper or spreadsheet, then you have a good sense of how Noteflight works. Noteflight gives you the ability to share your composition at any stage/point. Once you have chosen who you would like to share your composition with, they can help you create the best piece of music you ever imagined.

Another benefit is that you can get immediate feedback from your teacher on your 16-measure 4-part harmonic analysis/composition homework—potentially as you are working on it!

We use Noteflight throughout the PULSE curriculum. With the help of our in-house expert, we customize the Noteflight API (or Application Programming Interface, aka the guts) for our PULSE unit books. They are embedded in the notation to demonstrate concepts using examples, explorations and challenges. So right after learning about a concept or technique, our PULSE students can try it out, see how it works, or test themselves and get an immediate answer.

Check out these examples! The first two instances show how your harmony homework could look, and the third one is an editable blank piano score, so you can try writing a few measures of music with Noteflight.

Our Noteflight Tutorial is easily accessible from every book that contains Noteflight examples. The tutorial explains everything from The Very Basics to Creating Your Own Score. And we always encourage our teachers to use the PULSE forums for providing feedback.

With the advantage of this awesome web-tool, PULSE is a forerunner in providing enhanced learning tools for our students. We hope that this takes the student experience to the next level of learning application, and brings a deeper understanding of the concepts we set out to teach.

Time to write, collaborate, and listen! Now go forth, and compose!