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Fast, slow, high, low:  what musical elements influence your task performance?

Many people listen to music or watch TV while they work or study.  Does the music help them do better work?  Our previous studies showed that a significant number of individuals had stronger productivity on a simple mental task when listening to Cuban dance music than when working in silence.  What ingredients in the Cuban dance selection helped to stimulate the increased productivity? 

In this study, we will compare four different combinations of pitch and tempo in an attempt to determine what musical factors may influence productivity.  Participants will complete a simple mental task during four different musical conditions:  (1) high pitch, fast tempo; (2) high pitch, slow tempo; (3) low pitch, fast tempo; (4) low pitch, slow tempo.  Results will be compared between conditions, and each participant will be able to determine if the listening environment has affected his/her own task performance.

This study is a collaboration between Zhengsi Chang, University of Texas at Arlington, Debbie Cockerham, University of North Texas, Dr. Lin Lin, University of North Texas, and the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History.

Fun Fact
The OMNI Theater's projector, housed beneath the seats, is 6 feet tall and weights 1 ton.

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