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Where the most Inspired Musicians
become the most Inspiring Music Teachers

Fall 2023 MECA

Continuing Education Courses


Fretwire: A Comprehensive Method for Teaching Class Guitar


September 18-December 8, 2023

Course Code



3 Graduate Credits


$1,125 is due in full with registration. A $15 Early Bird Discount will be applied until August 31.


This course is for class guitar teachers who are looking for an innovative curricular tool to teach their students the fundamentals of guitar performance.  Fretwire is a powerful learning management system specifically for guitar offered through VanderCook College of Music.  Fretwire can administer a full year’s guitar class instruction, organize assessments, and much more.  If you teach band, orchestra, choir, or general music but need some help with your guitar courses, this course and program are for you.  

MECA students who enroll in “FretWire for Beginning Guitar” will go through a portion of the Fretwire curriculum just as their students would.   They will learn how to play open position chords, read melodies in 1st position, improvise using a blues chord progression, and perform a 12 bar blues with a partner or pre-recorded part.  Because FretWire comes with lesson plans, 300+ instructional videos, and weekly assessments, the teacher will then be able to teach their guitar classes knowing they have all the necessary resources to succeed.


Chat Session

This course is asynchronous. Please contact the instructor to request a meeting.



Required Text(s)

The required text for this course is Introduction to Guitar by Joe Sweet. –

For further fretboard study I recommend “Common Sense Approach to Improvisation” by Joe Negri from Mel Bay Publications. 


Learning Platform Information - Online Courses Only

Schoology is a learning management system that allows you to interact directly with your instructors, fellow students, and members of the greater VanderCook community.

The evening  before your class begins, be on the lookout for an email from Schoology with log-in instructions. Once you receive credentials, visit to login. 

Some courses have specific online chat meeting times (please see course descriptions), while others have a flexible meeting schedule. You can expect all courses to meet together in a live online chat. If a live meeting time doesn’t work, you can work with your instructor to make other arrangements.

More information about Schoology can be found at

Please see specific software/hardware requirements in the course description.

Online course grades are available within two weeks of the course(s) completion.  If you need a transcript, please CLICK HERE to access the online transcript request form. For a faster turnaround time, please submit the transcript request to the registrar prior to the end of your course(s).


Matt Hudson

Matt Hudson

MECA Faculty

Matt Hudson (MMEd ‘10) is a jazz guitarist from Erie, PA, currently teaching guitar and band at Chicago High School for Agricultural Sciences. Hudson began his formal music studies at the University of Pittsburgh in 1999. He won the Mellon Bank Jazz Scholarship, which gave him the chance to study with saxophonist Nathan Davis and world-renowned guitarist Joe Negri. Hudson has a voracious appetite for jazz improvisation and studied many eras of the form with a particular emphasis on blues and bebop. He became a regular fixture at jam sessions in Pittsburgh and by the time he graduated in 2003, he was performing in many top venues with artists such as Gene Stovall, Reggie Watkins, The Marvelettes, Jay Willis and Curtis Fuller. By the end of that year, Hudson decided to settle in Chicago to pursue creative opportunities that blended r&b, hip hop, jazz and rock. This began a fertile period for Hudson marked by collaborations with William Kurk Enterprise, Siji, Aaron Getsug, Scott Hessy and Karl E.H. Siegfried. In 2006, Hudson met producer and DJ Anthony Nicholson and his son Quincy Nicholson. This began his affiliation with the jazz recording group Scientific Map. Over the course of five years, this group recorded and toured in support of releases for the Imaginary Chicago Records label.

The mission of VanderCook College of Music is to enrich the lives of present and future generations by developing uniquely skilled music teachers who exhibit strong character, professionalism, and a commitment to excellence.

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