Playing your favorite tunes while studying may improve your memory and ability to absorb information. Listening to music as you study may mean the difference between passing your course and missing a beat.
Studying and Music Research: Mixed Tones
Studies have shown a correlation between listening to music and students’ GPA. The Center for New Discoveries in Learning found music improves learning potential because it blocks out distracting background noises and focuses concentration. Furthermore, recent findings suggest music can make the dullest tasks more enjoyable by brightening moods and increasing positive mindsets, which are key to successful study sessions.
Researchers who asked students to determine whether music works as a focusing tool or a distraction found mixed results. Half of the respondents perceived music as a focusing tool, and half perceived it as a distraction.
A study conducted by the University of Illinois found that music activates both sides of the brain, increasing the brain’s ability to process information improving student’s performance level and GPA.
Conflicting studies suggest that listening to music may work against studiers. An Oxfordlearning.com study that focused on memorization of lists found that participants performed worse on memorization tests when listening to music and did best with quiet conditions. Additionally, USA Today reports that individuals solved complicated problems more successfully when there was no background music.
While studies show mixed results about music’s ability to improve studying, most college students find it helpful to listen to music while studying.