Gabriella’s Guide: Music a Sound Decision for Studying

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Chris Ware/Lexington Herald-Leader/MCT

A popular theory claims listening to Mozart can improve students' thinking and creativity.

These days, we often see students walking around campus using their earphones. Music is blamed for being a distraction, but studies show it can be the opposite. Music can actually be a helpful tool while studying.

A popular theory called the “Mozart Effect” claims Mozart’s music can improve your short-term memory because it relaxes your mind that in turn, helps you concentrate.

I’ve had a couple of teachers test it out while giving exams and it seems to calm test anxiety and minimize outside distractions. Also, research shows classical music is the genre that yields optimal results.

“Baroque classical music is said to have mind-boosting effects,” productivity writer David Allen, author of Getting Things Done, said.

Researchers found music at 60 beats-per-minute puts the brain in a “bright and breezy” frame of mind, and in this state, thinking and creativity come easier. “Telemann & Vivaldi: Concertos for Recorder” is recommended for this purpose.

Likewise, giving the brain something soothing or familiar can help it focus better, particularly when exposed to multiple distractions. Studying in a public environment, like a busy café can make us lose focus on our work. That’s when the earphones come in handy. Playing music at low levels can block the outside world and keep you in the zone.

The purpose of playing music is to keep you from getting distracted when studying. To that end, it helps to choose the right type of music in order to remain focused on what you need to get done.