Adding accidentals

So far, all the notes you have input have followed the accidentals in the key signature of A major. However, the chords in bar 6 include B and D, so you need to add accidentals.


On the Note Input and Editing page in Preferences (key command Ctrl/Cmd-,), you have chosen Before inputting note for Specify accidental, rhythm dot and articulations.


  1. In bar 6, select the quarter note rest on beat 2 on the bottom staff.
  2. Press Shift-N to start note input.
  3. If chord input is not already active, press Q to start chord input.

    Caret active on the bottom staff in chord input

    • The F at the bottom of the chord does not need an accidental, but following on from the previous chord, the default register of the next F you input is a third below the A on beat 1, rather than the sixth above that is required here.

  4. Press Shift-Alt/Opt-F to input an F in the correct, higher octave.
    • The next two pitches both require a natural accidental, so you need to prepare the accidental before inputting each note.

  5. Press 0 to select a natural accidental.
    • You must press 0 on your computer keyboard, not a numeric keypad.

    • You can also select a natural accidental by clicking Natural in the Notes panel on the left of the window.

      Natural accidental button in the Notes panel

  6. Press B to input a B.

    B♮ input in a chord in bar 6

    • Accidentals only apply to one note. You must reselect a natural accidental for the D.

  7. Press 0 to select a natural accidental.
  8. Press D to input a D.
  9. Press Space to advance the caret.
  10. Press F, then B, then D to input the corresponding pitches.
    • Because accidentals last for the rest of the bar by default, the next B and D are also input as B and D automatically.

  11. Press Esc or Return to stop note input.


You have input chords each containing two notes with natural accidentals. The natural accidentals are automatically hidden on the second chord because the default accidental duration rule in Dorico is common practice, where accidentals apply until the end of the bar. Similarly, the B in bar 7 on the top staff shows a cautionary flat accidental automatically.

Chords in bar 6 with B♮ and D♮ accidentals

  • You can also add accidentals to selected notes outside of note input. Sometimes this is more helpful, as you can add the same accidental to multiple notes at once.

    For a flat accidental, press -. For a sharp accidental, press =. On an English keyboard, these keys have - (minus) and + (plus) on them respectively, which might help you remember them: minus lowers notes while plus raises notes. 0 for natural represents no alteration.

    You can find more accidentals in the Key Signatures, Tonality Systems, and Accidentals panel on the right of the window, which you can show by clicking Panels Panels button in the Notations toolbox, then Key Signatures, Tonality Systems, and Accidentals Key Signatures, Tonality Systems, and Accidentals button in the Notations toolbox in the Notations toolbox.

  • For more information about accidental duration rules, see the Operation Manual. In Dorico SE, you cannot change the accidental duration rule.

After Completing This Task

Continue inputting chords on the bottom staff using what you have learned in this task and the previous task, up to and including the first beat of bar 14, without the arpeggio signs: you will add those in a later task.