Musical Tragedy

Almost everybody I know listens to music while studying, relaxing, writing papers, the works. Anything school-related is automatically less stressful when you've got a mellow melody in the background. Even classical music has been proven to help retain information and allow higher grades. In that case, ti has to be beneficial to listen to music while studying, right? Not exactly.


The main reason why music is harmful while studying is because music stimulates different parts of the brain. This may affect your ability to learn as much, and it's not harmful in the way your brain works, but may be harmful to your grades. The University of Phoenix state that although this is true, the study is still in progress because the effects ultimately depend on the person. 

Another study was done to document the effects different types of music can have on the brain. In the study, students were asked to recall a series of sounds presented in a specific order in different environments with music (including silence) they liked and did not. 

The conclusion of this study was that students who preferred silence scored significantly higher on test grades. The main solution to this debate is focused on the individual. Everyone has a different way of thinking and studying techniques, which you learn work best for you through trial and error.

Personally, I would not be able to retain a single word if I was reading out of a textbook while listening to the Top 40 hits, but I can easily type an essay with my playlist on repeat. It all depends on the person.

Give it a shot and see what works best for you.


I can't study or do anything productive with any type of background noise. To me, it's too distracting and I only focus on the music, rather than my homework. According to this article listening to music before you complete a task helps you retain information, alleviate stress and even improve your mental math abilities!

Ever since high school, I've been listening to music while I do homework, study, write papers, ect. I also play the violin, so I've been around classical music for a while so I find that listening to classical when doing my work is very beneficial. It's not loud, confusing with words in the background, and I also read somewhere that listening to classical soundtracks is actually even more beneficial because they were written to be played in the background, and not the forefront of what your activity. I also agree that Top 40 aren't a good idea, since there is so much commotion. But I would also suggest switching up the music, while all keeping it mellow sounding, of course!

Personally, I listen to music when I do anything involving work(this includes reading sometimes 0.0). I just feel like I get more bored faster if I don't have music playing. The silence is too boring for me so I will look for distractions elsewhere like Facebook and YouTube which in my opinion is a lot more distracting than music.

In relation to the study I feel like it might be a case of the Texas Sharpshooter fallacy...? I mean how often in serious situations are people required to remember specific sounds in order.. Obviously if you are trying to remember sounds music and other noises are not going to help.

I guess it varies from person to person though.♪♫

I have never heard that listening to music while studying is a bad thing. I remember hearing about how mothers are encouraged to play classical music for their babies in the womb and during infancy to improve brain function. Here's an article that says that "Students who listen to classical music with 60-70 beats per minute while they study score on average 12% higher on their Math exams, the equivalent of up to a whole grade."

I debate this dilemma over and over each time I study. I want to always be listening to music because it makes anything bearable but I always seem to get distracted. Sometimes if I get into a rhythm I can get work done but it is rare. I agree that it depends on the person and how their able to deal with it. The University of Phoenix did a study on the question of if you should listen to music or not and came to the conclusion that some can study efficiently while others get distracted by any outside stimulus. Here us the article.

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