The Relationship Between Learning and Music

Studying can be a difficult process. While there are numerous tricks and techniques for making the studying process easier, the inclusion of certain types of music shows the most promise. Some genres of music are very calming, making it easier to concentrate. Other types of music can actually stimulate certain areas of your brain. While not everyone will experience the same effects, for many people the concept of using music as a study tool is worth looking into.

Studies on Music

There are decades of research on the effect music can have on learning and studying. While few studies can be considered conclusive, most show that some background music has a net positive effect on both the studying and learning processes. Some studies of classroom environments show that background music can have a positive effect in keeping students focused and on task. Perhaps the best known example of music and learning is what is known as the "The Mozart Effect.” The model illustrates how certain Mozart sonatas, along with a smattering of Baroque pieces, can make it possible to retain more knowledge and perform better on tests.


Music and Studying

The effect of music on learning and studying generally revolves around how your brain reacts to certain types of music. Some music can help you to lower your stress level and concentrate more easily, and may even cause a release of endorphins putting you in a "state of peace." Certain types of music, especially classical, are naturally mathematical and stimulate areas of the brain used for working out complex concepts and theories. Incorporating music into studying can be even beneficial for students engaged in online learning, as the space used for studying is often the same space used for classes, which can lead to boredom, especially during study times. Adding music could be what helps you clear the hurdle and get through your online courses more easily.

Picking the Right Kind of Music

Not every type of music is ideal for learning or studying. Harsh or jarring music can have the opposite of the desired effect, as can music with lyrics that steal your attention. Usually, the best music to enhance your study efforts is instrumental and rhythmic in nature, without too many stops and starts. Studies show that classical music is ideal, though some genres, like easy listening, have also been shown to offer some benefit.

Whether you are actively pursuing online learning, or just want to focus on your general studies, adding music to your study space can bring some benefits. Just be sure to pick the right kind of music—anything that will fade into the background—and you could enhance your study experience!