Why Play & Study Music
Benefits of Musical Study
"The gifts of studying music include:
1. Creative problem solving
2. Controlled concentration
3. Developed motor skills
4. Greater emotional expression
5. Acquired skills in the art of self-discipline
6. Raised social status
7. Creative interaction with other people
8. Raised awareness of art, beauty and more
These skills are as basic and useful as any other skills taught in school."
— Allen Vizzutti from The Allen Vizzutti Trumpet Method
Ten-Year Study Shows Music Improves Test Scores
Regardless of socioeconomic background, music-making students get higher marks in standardized tests. UCLA professor, Dr. James Catterall, led an analysis of a U.S. Department of Education database. Called NELLs88, the database was used to track more than 25,000 students over a period of ten years. The study showed that students involved in music generally tested higher than those who had no music involvement. The test scores studied were not only standardized tests, such as the SAT, but also in reading proficiency exams. The study also noted that the musicians scored higher, no matter what socioeconomic group was being studied.
— Dr. James Catterall, UCLA 1997
Music Makes the Brain Grow
Childhood music lessons actually enlarge portions of the brain. German researchers found that the brain area used to analyze musical pitch is an average of 25% larger in musicians. The younger the musical training begins, the larger the area.
— Nature, April 23, 1998
Second Graders do Sixth Grade Math:
Second-grade students who were given four months of piano keyboard training, as well as time using math puzzle software, scored 27% higher on proportional math and fractions tests than children who received no special instruction. They were also able to solve proportional math problems at a sixth grade level.
— Keeping Mozart in Mind, Academic Press
Music Students Enjoy Greater College Success
Music majors are better readers and more successful med school applicants. A study of 7,500 university students revealed that music majors scored the highest reading scores among all majors including English, biology, chemistry and math. Physician and biologist Lewis Thomas studied the undergraduate majors of medical school applicants. He found that 66% of music majors who applied to med school were admitted, the highest percentage of any group. Forty-four percent (44%) of biochemistry majors were admitted.
— The Comparative Academic Abilities of Students in Education and in Other Areas of a Multi-focus University, Peter H. Wood, ERIC Document No. ED327480. The Case for Music in the Schools, Phi Delta Kappan, February, 1994
Rhythm Students Learn Fractions Better
After learning eighth, quarter, half and whole notes, second and third graders scored 100% higher than their peers who were taught fractions using traditional methods.
— Neurological Research, March 15, 1999