Wednesday, July 28, 2010

The perils of background music

New research on music and cognition from the University of Wales Institute! Psychologists have discovered that listening to music may not help you study. From CNN Health:
They instructed 25 participants between ages 18 and 30 try to memorize, and later recall, a list of letters in order ... Participants were tested under various listening conditions: quiet, music that they'd said they liked, music that they'd said they didn't like, a voice repeating the number three, and a voice reciting random single-digit numbers.

The study found that participants performed worst while listening to music, regardless of whether they liked that music, and to the speech of random numbers.
I have to know. Did these guys expect a different finding?

My guess is that nobody puts on study music to help them study. The point is to make an annoying or tedious task a little more pleasant. That's all. They aren't expecting the Mozart effect to make them smarter as they go.

1 comment:

Brian McDonald said...

I wonder what would have happened if they'd played the Beatles' "Revolution No. 9". Would a repeated number off a music album make it worse? How about the alphabet song? There's more research to be done here, people!