Offering a complete correspondence
home-study (open university) course
for beginning and intermediate students in piano tuning,
repairing, regulating, voicing, apprentice training and
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The Most Complete Home Study Course
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Training Competent Piano Technicians Into the Twenty-First Century
The Randy Potter School of Piano Technology is a complete correspondence, home-study school teaching tuning, repairing, regulating, voicing, apprentice training, business practices and dealer and manufacturer relations. Students learn not only to service pianos, but customer relations and how to start and operate a piano service business, including dealing with dealers and manufacturers using modern, up-to-date business practices. We are the largest school teaching piano technology in the world, and have students throughout the U.S. and Canada, and in over 70 countries throughout the world.
Students learn via the 1,000+ page training manual published by the school, six two-hour videos (including introduction to piano service, tuning, repairing and regulating), ten auxiliary textbooks, Apprentice Training Manual, manufacturers' technical service manuals and charts, piano manufacturers' price lists, suppliers catalogs and wholesale price lists - and much more. Our DVD videos are a strong part of our course which supplement the more than 500 pictures and diagrams in the written course material, and are the living, moving, full-color illustrations of the processes and techniques you learn in the written course. We also have a Resource Loaning Library which includes more than 50 additional videos and about a dozen electronic tuning devices students may use. Videos include several piano manufacturers factory tours, plus many specialized topics on piano technology.
Courses for Beginning Students include tools, parts, repair supplies and a vertical action model, which is one key of a piano set into a framework so students can practice removing and replacing parts, as well as learn regulating techniques, without having the other 87 notes in the way. Tools include tuning, repairing and regulating tools, and are outlined later in this catalog. Repair parts and supplies include sample parts students can use to practice many of the repair techniques they learn in the course.
While our course is for beginners, it is also for intermediate and advanced technicians. It is the only course designed to take a beginner all the way through taking and passing their PTG Exams, doing concert work - and beyond. Because our course is so complete, about one-quarter of our students are already piano technicians who want to upgrade their skills and expertise. Many Continuing Education students are graduates of other schools (both correspondence and residence) and some have been tuning for as long as 30 years. Courses for intermediate technicians do not include tools, parts or supplies.
We also have Intermediate and Advanced Hands-On Training Seminars; one-week, 60-hour, intensive, hands-on, one-on-one training programs offered in the summer or winter. This program is for working piano technicians, or students who have completed at least 1/2 of our home-study course. Our next seminar will be at Northwestern College in St. Paul.
Attending a residence school is a wonderful way to learn and there are several good schools available. Most students who take our course are "place bound": They have a life, a family, a job, a house, and maybe a mortgage or other obligations that do not allow them to just up and leave to attend a residence school in another city or state - perhaps clear across the country. They need to learn at home, or they will not be able to learn at all.
Students who study at home can arrange their study as it suits their lifestyle, family needs, work and play schedule. School is always "in session" - whenever you open your books or put a video in the DVD player or computer.
Today both men and women train and become competent piano technicians. More than 30% of our students are women. We have had students as old as 82, and as young as 13. Good normal hearing is needed for tuners and normal manual dexterity is needed for repairing and regulating. Older technicians, who may be losing their hearing and the ability to tune well, can still work full time repairing and regulating pianos. And many tuners, wearing hearing aids, continue tuning up into their 80's. Most tuners begin as a part-time job, or hobby, to supplement their income. For many it becomes a full-time career when they see the need for well-trained and competent tuner-technicians, and realize the exceptional earning potential.
Because our course is home study, students can study and learn piano technology wherever they live. We have students and graduates in over 70 countries. We meet many of our students as Randy travels to teach at technical conferences around the world. In recent years he has taught in the U.S., Canada, Cuba, Europe, Australiz, New Zealand and Japan.
When KEYBOARD Magazine reviewed home study schools they said "I think the Randy Potter course is an extraordinary achievement, a terrific investment for anyone who wants to become a piano technician or upgrade their professional skills, and an unbeatable value for the price. Not only does it bring together more information about piano technology than has ever existed in one place, it does so in a philosophical and ethical context conducive to producing craftspeople who will be a credit to their profession, and provides a firm practical foundation for their business success." If this sounds like what you are looking for - READ ON!