Music can Have a Powerful Impact on Students' Mindset and Academic Performance
As an avid fan of many types of music, and a recording singer, songwriter, & guitarist, I can clearly appreciate the many ways in which music can positively impact our mind set and our abilities. If you've ever listened to classical music while thinking through a problem, or experienced how the rhythms of music can help a student memorize some rote information they need for a subject, you've experienced the impact music can have on our ability to think and learn. Thanks to Frank Laughlin for this post about this heartfelt subject! – K. Walsh
Humans have theorized for a long time about the purpose of music and the scientific community has conducted research to understand the effects on us. Different types of music can affect us in a variety of ways. Time and time again researchers have shown that personal experience with music benefits our lives.
Our attitudes can be affected by music. It can affect energy levels and feelings. The book named “Music and Listening” by Chris Brewer states when an individual chooses the music it affects their mood and memories.
There are various places where people use music to help them keep calm or get into a proper mindset. For example, at work completing tasks with minimal errors or distraction. School kids want to remember information so when they are doing homework or taking an exam they have improved recollection. Athletes use music to get into a competitive mindset and keep a positive attitude to better themselves or encourage the team to win. With all this in mind, teachers should consider having music playing in the background during lectures or other class work. It may help students better remember important information.
In the year 2011, college students were asked to keep a music diary to determine how it affected their daily lives. The study included both students who majored in music and in other studies. Students considered course material, drove around the campus, chose clothes, and socialized with friends. Researchers discovered positive moods when music was playing in the background.
School can be a stressful place. Anything that can reduce stress in school helps not only a student but also their peers and their instructors as well.
In another study, scientists wanted to determine if relaxation and music therapy can reduce stress. Patients were randomly assigned to either relax, listen to music, or do nothing. Researchers discovered that hearing music led to a lower heart rate and normalized body temperatures. They concluded that these were effective ways to reduce stress in such environments.
Another study included developers from software companies. Researchers observed their work environments during a five week period. Besides keeping a positive attitude, the quality of their work was higher when music was playing. Also, their efficiency at completing tasks was better when hearing background music.
If music can benefit employees, there's no reason why it can't also help students. Completing tasks in an efficient manner can lead to an upbeat attitude. It establishes a sense of accomplishment and allows more time to spend with others.
Students studying for an exam sometimes take the risk of “cramming” information into their brains the night before. The next day during the exam they fail to remember anything. The “Mozart effect” has proven to increase short term memory. Reviewing information while hearing classical music leads to longer retention.
The reason is that many parts of the brain are firing at the same time. Music triggers some areas of the brain hearing notes but no words. Other areas of the brain are also actively responsible for understanding information. All this results in more of the person's mind being used at the same time. Thus, benefits as a whole are far more than just all the individual parts added together. This is known as the Mozart Effect.
The website “Focus@will” also demonstrated music can lead to increased neural activity in the brain. They found that when specific types of music is played that nerve cells will grow.
So, whether it is having a positive mindset, reducing stress, or improving memory, listening to music can benefit anyone. Students and their young minds are at their peak when they learn something new. Only good can come when they are provided with every advantage available.