Many people associate and think of music as something relaxing, or even something that you can scream your lungs out to. Music’s not the most common tool used to help someone with studying or homework. The possibilities of music types are endless as well as the ways that music can help you. Many factors contribute to the fact that listening to music when studying can be a very useful thing. Negative effects are present, like almost everything in the world, but the pros outweigh the cons in this situation. Through the exploration of studies and the consensus of how music makes a person feel, listening to music when studying can have a very positive effect on an individual.
In “Silence is Golden: The Bad Effect of Music While Studying,” Saki Amano creates a survey that they provide to students asking them about their habits of listening to music when they study. The results clearly show that most people like to listen to music, and out of those people almost 100 percent of them prefer music with lyrics. Saki makes a very bold claim saying that “about half of students who listen to music while studying are apt to think they cannot concentrate more on their studying than no music.” Saki previously states that they believe students listen to music to concentrate better on studying, a completely different opinion than what the rest of the research they provide displays. The results from the survey are in favor of a position approving individuals listening to music while studying, instead of a position disliking the idea of studying with music. None of the survey questions asked anything more specific than simple questions, the most lengthy asking if the student believes they concentrate more with or without music present. Making assumptions about your data and the subjects in your research will create false conclusions. The mixed tones of the authors’ claims display a deep amount of confusion.
Multitasking is a difficult pursuit but it is likely to be utilized by many students. Individuals who have a hard time concentrating on multiple tasks at once, let alone two, are smart enough to know themselves and their study habits. They are not going to listen to music when studying knowing that it is bad for them. Refined individuals who have been in school for years know their brain and what works best for them. When evaluating multitasking, Amano says that “One researcher found that the majority of students who engage in multitasking during the class get the lower GPA, and the risk that using alcohol, tobacco and other drugs is likely to be higher than students who do only one task at once.” The information presented has absolutely nothing to do with the argument at all. In the classroom, multitasking is not just listening to music, it also involves being on your phone, doodling, watching a movie or tv show. The same goes for multitasking while studying and doing homework, listening to music being one raindrop under a huge umbrella. The conclusion made in this scenario would not impact the sole effects of listening to music and studying. The statement also mentions the risk of alcohol and drug use as a result of multitasking. Not only was the umbrella of multitasking big enough, but alcohol and drug use is far from that umbrella. The farthest you could get from listening to music and studying is shown in that statement. Alcohol and drug use is an important topic, and is sure to catch the eye of anyone reading about music and studying when it is not expected. Taking their focus from the real argument, it throws them off track. This abuse is related to the multitasking umbrella and a few of its raindrops, not directly to music and studying.
Listening to your preferred music is going to be done more than listening to music you don’t like. Many students prefer pop or rock music, both inhabiting lyrics. Amano claims “that music with lyrics causes the brain to focus all of its energy on blocking out the vocal stimuli from the song, preventing it from concentrating on the task.” Another form of multitasking, the lyrics taking an unconscious focus from the individual causing them to become less engaged with their task. In Music and memory: Effects of listening to music while studying in college students, a study was calculated showing results of reading an assigned text with classical music versus lyrical or pop music playing in the background and then answering comprehension questions.. In terms of mean scores, the pop music listeners scored 2 points higher than the classical music. This educated study was completed at a university, and has produced accurate results, showing that lyrical music does make a difference. As a final result from the study, Mensik and Dodge say that “studying for a test while listening to music may cause little to no detriment to comprehension.”
The argument against listening to music while studying shows compelling but wavering perspectives. Studies have clearly shown that the effects of this very much depend on the individual person. The average student is more likely to do just fine when it comes to studying and having their favorite music playing in the background. It creates a safer environment for them to feel more relaxed. You are sure to find your own ways of studying effectively for your own benefit, and you can listen to whatever you desire. While there may be some disadvantages to it, go ahead and study while listening to that rap song or even Mozart if you’re feeling fancy!
Amano, S. (2015). Silence is Golden: The Bad Effect of Music While Studying. Google Docs. Retrieved November 18, 2021, from https://docs.google.com/document/preview?hgd=1&id=1enacyMCl1cLTBiHJ86bL1_WWl9qyz_uwEJkJA1NOzTQ.
Goltz, F., & Sadakata, M. (2021, September 20). Do you listen to music while studying? A portrait of how people use music to optimize their cognitive performance. Acta Psychologica. Retrieved October 10, 2021, from https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0001691821001670?via%3Dihub.
Mensink, M. C., & Dodge, L. (2014, April 1). Music and memory: Effects of listening to music while studying in college students. MINDS@UW Home. Retrieved November 18, 2021, from https://minds.wisconsin.edu/handle/1793/77348.