Music lessons can help children to concentrate

Brass class 1

Researchers at the Dutch-speaking university, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, in Brussels, Belgium have discovered that music lessons can help children to concentrate.

Sixty-three 9-12-year-olds took part in the research, and the results showed that the group of 32 children who had been having regular music lessons since the age of five displayed ‘enhanced cognitive inhibitory control’ compared to the 31 in the non-music lesson group. ‘Cognitive inhibition’ refers to our ability to tune out irrelevant information and focus our attention on what we’re doing.

To measure inhibitory control, all of the children completed a task where they were asked to press a certain key when a specific colour appeared on a computer screen in front of them. The children were scored on whether they pushed the correct buttons, and how long it took them to respond.

The researchers found that the young musicians performed significantly better than the non-musicians, and believe this might be related to music training because playing a musical instrument requires high levels of selective attention.

SOURCES:
Pacific Standard: https://psmag.com/another-brain-benefit-of-music-lessons-4e981ead59ff#.j3a1lyb1p
Musicae Scientiae: http://msx.sagepub.com/content/early/2016/06/14/1029864916655477.abstract

DETAILS:

BENEFIT: IMPROVED CONCENTRATION
TARGET GROUP: CHILDREN
AGE: 9-12 YEARS OLD
MUSIC TYPE: SUZUKI METHOD
TYPE OF STUDY: ACADEMIC RESEARCH
NOs INVOLVED: 63
PERIOD OF STUDY: UNKNOWN
DATE: 2015
PLACE: BELGIUM
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