Playing guitar is a lot of fun, but if you want to take your playing to the next level, learning music theory is a must. Music theory is the study of how music works, and it can provide you with a deeper understanding and appreciation of the instrument. In this article, we’ll discuss how to learn music theory in guitar.

1. Start with the Basics

Before diving into complex music theory concepts, it’s essential to start with the basics. Learn about notes, scales, and chords.

Learn how to read sheet music and tablature. These foundational skills will help you understand more advanced concepts as you progress.

2. Take Online Courses or Lessons

There are plenty of online courses that will teach you music theory for guitar. Some are free while others require payment. You can also take lessons from a guitar teacher who specializes in teaching music theory.

3. Understand Chord Progressions

Chord progressions are essential in creating songs and understanding them is vital for any guitarist interested in writing their own music or improvising over existing songs. Learn about common chord progressions such as I-IV-V and ii-V-I.

4. Learn About Modes

Modes are an important part of music theory for guitarists, especially those interested in playing jazz or fusion styles of music. The most common modes are Ionian (major), Dorian (minor), Phrygian (minor), Lydian (major), Mixolydian (major), Aeolian (minor), and Locrian (diminished).

5. Practice Ear Training

Ear training is the process of training your ears to recognize different notes, intervals, and chords. It’s a crucial skill for any musician, especially guitarists who want to improvise or write their own music. There are several online resources you can use to improve your ear training skills.


Learning music theory for guitar can be challenging, but it’s well worth the effort. By understanding music theory concepts such as chord progressions, modes, and ear training, you’ll be able to take your playing to the next level. Start with the basics and work your way up – with time and practice, you’ll become a master of music theory in no time!