How Music Affects Concentration and Work Efficiency Essay

Custom Student Mr. Teacher ENG 1001-04 9 January 2017

How Music Affects Concentration and Work Efficiency

Research on the brain has been immense. The scientific study of the brain has become an essential endeavor in understanding human life. Music has been found to have profound effect on the brain. Psychologists and scientists have been looking at the link between music, with mood, work efficiency and concentration for years. In our experiment, we hope to find a correlation between a specific genre of music and greater work efficiency and concentration. We plan to give Miami University students a brief reading comprehension test while listening to a certain genre of music (rock, rap, classical, instrumental, techno, and no music). After testing 90 students, we hope to reach a conclusion about what music helps concentration and work efficiency. If we are able to come to a conclusion, we will have a study skill that will help college students perform better on tests and with homework.

Introduction: In this study we seek to examine the correlations between music and the mind. We hope to uncover the profound impact that various genres of music can have on concentration and comprehension. We hypothesize, that classical music, along with soothing and instrumental music will benefit concentration greater than rock and roll music or pieces featuring fast and wild rhythms.

Our research question for this project is what specific music will benefit concentration and comprehension greatestNif at all. After researching other studies that have done on the link between music and concentration, we predict that listening to different types of music while answering questions will indeed affect the subjectOs concentration and work efficiency. In specific, we predict that classical music will help our brain with concentration tasks. From our various studies and tests we hope to discover this helpful link between music’s affect on the mind and use the results to enact better habits in our own lives.

Our group wanted to perform an experiment that has validity to a personOs everyday life. Because all of our group members are in college and feel the pressure and stress to accumulate good grades, we thought it would be a great idea to help ease the anxiety by finding a method to help with our studying. If our hypothesis turns out conclusive, it will be beneficial for people to listen to classical music while studying. We have hopes that we will find a genre of music that helps the mind concentrate more efficiently. If we can accomplish our goal by coming to a definite answer to our question our experiment will be successful.

We believe that this study is interesting because the vast majority of college students, ourselves included, enjoy music and seek ways to incorporate our music in studying. As college students, we also want to find ways to improve our grades and success at taking tests. If we can find a way in which music benefits studying and comprehension, we can involve music in our studies thus enhancing the enjoyment of time studying as well as enhancing our learning abilities. Music is powerful. It has the potential to evoke emotions and personality.

Because of the profound effects music has on the human race, it has been a common link between cultures around the world for centuries. Not only does music provide entertainment and beautiful sounds, but it has an amazing effect on memory and learning. It has been found that people who study music have better GPAs and are higher achievers than those who aren’t involved in music. It is also true that Hungary, Japan and the Netherlands are the top three academic countries in the world and they all place a great emphasis on music education and participation in music.

With that fact, the United States should promote music education in all students and stress the importance of music from an early age when children are curious and adventurous. Through recent scientific studies there has been a much greater understanding on music and itOs psychological effects. There have been countless studies performed to understand the complex correlation of the complicated brain and music. For example, in a study performed by Mark Tarrant, David Hargreaves, and Adrian North, the men sought to examine the manipulation of the mind based on music.

In the study, they played music in a gym and examined the moods through testing their subjects immediately following their workout. They offered the participants the ability to help out a charity, thus examining the affect that the music had on them. They measured two different groups, those who listened to annoying music and those who listened to uplifting music. The results revealed that the uplifting music did in fact manipulate the mind by causing the subjects to be more supportive, while the people who listened to the annoying music were short-tempered and unhelpful.

Another famous study has dealt with how MozartOs masterpieces help concentration and memorization when studying for academics. It has been found in many different studies that because of the mathematical rhythms in MozartOs musical pieces, mental clarity is enhanced, therefore improving study skills. After researching this study, our group was able to construct our own hypothesis. The study also made us more hopeful that our hypothesis would turn our conclusive. An experiment performed by Teresa Lesiuk dealt with the effect of listening to music on work performance.

She concluded that quality of work and time-on-task work was least efficient with no music. Her experiment showed that people produce more quality work while listening to music and they finish their work faster when listening to music. It also stated that work environments with music help employee moods. This study helps our experiment, but lacks the difference in music genres on work efficiency. With our experiment, we will be able to take this specific study even further by finding out what specific genre of music helps work efficiency and mood.

Exploring multiple sources and studies performed by other scientists has only helped strengthen our own experiment and shed light onto different facets of our study. With the help of outside information, we hope to provide a well constructed experiment with reliable results. From our research, we have built a vast base of knowledge on not only music’s effects on the mind, but mood, tension, and other factors which could possibly hinder our experiment. The knowledge we have gained on the diverse human responses to various genres of music have helped support our belief that music can in fact have both beneficial and harmful consequences.

Our study seeks to examine not only our narrowly defined question, but several broader inquiries. Walking into King Library, there are a vast number of students hard at work while tuned into their iPods. In our study, we seek to examine what genre of music will be most beneficial. On a larger scale however, our study examines several broader topics and has many far reaching effects on student’s lives. The study will work to reach conclusions on how students can improve academic performance as well as comprehension and mental efficiency.

In researching this topic, we have come across many studies that also explore the link between music and the mind. Hargreaves, David, Mark Tarrant, and Adrian North. “The Effects of Music on Helping Behavior. ” Environment and Behavior 36 (2004). 10 Sep 2005 . This was an extremely beneficial study was performed on this topic by Mark Tarrant, David Hargreaves, and Adrian North. These men sought to examine the manipulation of the mind based on music. They played music in a gym and examined the moods through testing their subjects immediately following their workout.

They offered the participants the ability to help out a charity, thus examining the affect that the music had on them. They had two different groups which they measured those who listened to annoying music and those who listened were exposed to uplifting music. The results revealed that the uplifting music did in fact manipulate the mind by causing the subjects to be more supportive. Weinberger, Norman . The Mozart Effect: A Small Part of the Big Picture. 7 ed. Sacramento: Regents of the University of California, 2000. One particular article we came across examined the effect of classical music’s mathematical rhythms.

According to their studies, the format of the mathematical rhythms in Mozart’s pieces contain various factors which enhance mental clarity. Lesiuk, Teresa. “The Effect of music listening on work performance. ” Psychology of Music. Vol. 33, No. 2, 173-191 (2005). . This journal article found results that indicate that in a work environment, quality of work is lowest with no music and time-on-task was longest with no music as well. It also states the environments with music help mood and increase quality of work when music is present. We hope that our experiment shows these results as well. Platel, H. The Structural Components of Music Perception.

A Functional Anatomical Study. ” Brain. Vol 120, Issue 2: 229-243. Oxford University Press 1997. This journal article relates to our experiment in a more medical standpoint. Their experiment explores the relationship between the cerebral structures and music appreciation. It is essential that we look at medical journal articles so we understand the medical basis to our experiment. Our mind is complex and extraordinary and music plays a profound affect on our brain and the way it works. McCraty, R. “The Effects of Different Types of Music on Mood, Tension, and Mental Clarity. Pub Med. 1998 Jan; 4 (1): 75-84. 7 Sep 2005. .

This journal article touched on not only music and its effect on work efficiency, but also music’s effect on tension, mood and mental clarity. Because it includes more than just mental clarity, it gives us more information and research to work with. The study found that designer music (music made to have a specific effect on the listener) increased positive feelings and concentration levels. This journal article has many similarities to our experiment and coincides with our hypothesis. Florentine, Mary. “On the Behavioral Characteristics of Loud-Music Listening. Ear and Hearing: The Official Journal of the American Auditory Society. 19(6):420-428, 1998 Dec. This journal discusses behavior and its link to listening excessively to loud music.

They created a survey and test 90 subjects. Eight of the surveyors showed behaviors that are present in substance abusers. This is relevant to our experiment because we will be using rock and other types of loud music to measure concentration„this journal taps into the musical category. Sweeney, J. C. “The Role of Cognitions and Emotions in the Music-approach-avoidance Behavior Relationhip. Journal of Services Marketing. Vol 16, 1: 51-69. March 2002. Emerald Group Publishing Limited. This study dealt with an experiment in a women’s fashion store. This journal differed from the other’s we researched, however it touched on a different aspect of our experiment.

The journal states that music affects customer’s perceptions of service quality as well as feelings of arousals in terms of a women’s fashion store. After reading different journals like this one, it is obvious that music affects all aspects of life, not just mood and concentration. McCraty, Rollin. The Effects of Different Types of Music on Mood, Tension, and Mental Clarity. ” HeartMath 76 (2002). 17 Sep 2005 . A third study we found, looked into the connections between music, mood, and mental clarity. They sought to test the different effects that diverse genres of music had on subjects through psychological questioning and profiling. They tested four genres of music from various corners of the music world; Grunge Rock, New Age, Classical, and Designer. The results were conclusive in revealing that grunge rock evoked hostility and greatly reduced mental clarity and motivation.

We found this particularly important to our studies as we also plan to test primarily college students who commonly listen to grunge music. Carroll, Robert Todd. “Mozart Effect. ” The Skeptic’s Dictionary 2005. . This article explores the effect that Mozart music has on the mind. It gives the history of the scientist who examined this issue. They included statistics to prove their case the students do better when they are exposed to Mozart and classical music. This article correlates to our hypothesis that classical music will improve concentration.

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