Music And Studying: The Pros And Cons Of Combining BothBy Mark Spencer, UniversityHerald Reporter
Some believe that studying and listening to music is a productive combination. Research shows numerous benefits of listening to music before performing tasks such as improving attention, memory and even math ability. Of course, music has been known to alleviate depression and anxiety.
It has been found in a study that suggests that listening to music increases the cognitive process. However, the choice of music has not been explored that may account why some swear music works for them and for others do not.
Others attribute listening to music, and getting benefits from it, to the "Mozart Effect." The belief surrounding the myth say that listening to Mozart makes one smarter, however, as myths go, the Mozart Effect has not shown any relevance for educational practice. More so listening to Mozart exclusively does not make one smarter.
Additionally, there have been studies that have shown that music can have a negative impact on studying effectiveness. Affected the most is when it comes to memorizing anything in order. Dr. Nick Perham's 2010 study explored how music can interfere with short-term memory potential. It cites if the preference for background music mediates the irrelevant sound effect.
Dr. Perham discovered listening to liked or liked music has the same effect of impairing performance on serial recall tasks. This is so because the various words and notes playing throw off the listener, he theorized. Hence, music with lyrics is more than likely to give problematic effects when writing or reading.
Since music has become such a fundamental part of our daily lives and sets the mood, students would want to know whether it would actually affect their studying positively or negatively. The best mood to study in is a relaxed mood.
Aside from being in a relaxed mood, choosing the type of music that would make one stay in a relaxed state would be beneficial, the idea is not to have music that will cause one to zone out during studying. Particularly, if you are a person that has difficulty in multitasking and easily distracted, listening to music might just cause your attention to drift.
The final decision is up to the student. As it turns out, music's effects while studying varies from person to person, what is being listened to, the genre and how loud it is. In order to study more effectively, one need to figure out the effect of music has on their studying ability and then tailor a playlist that proves to be beneficial, and the best suit to their needs and efficiency.