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Effects of Music on Reading Comprehension

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The Effects of Classical and Contemporary Music on Reading Comprehension of College Students

Louis Sandro Y. Aboga
Bakhita Mae Alexie N. Llames
Aquinas University of Legazpi

The Effects of Classical and Contemporary Music on Reading Comprehension of College Students

Music is more pervasive now than at any other point in history, functioning not only as a pleasurable art form, but also serving many important psychological functions (MacDonald, Hargreaves and Miell, 2002) and influencing cognitive functioning (Rauscher, Shaw, and Ky 1993)

Music and Reading Comprehension
Etaugh and Ptasnik (1982) found that individuals who rarely studied with background music showed better comprehension when they learned in silence, while those who frequently studied with music performed better in the presence of music.
Hall (1952), exploring the possible uses of music in schools, found that performance on reading comprehension tests was significantly improved when background music was playing; 58% of the 245 8th and 9th graders taking part in the study, showed an increase in scores a reading test.

Physiological Aspect on Music and Memory
Numerous previous studies have tested to determine if the above conditions do in fact play an integral role in being a catalyst or antagonist to understanding complex literature. First the topic will be addressed from a biological perspective: processing in one hemisphere of the brain results in reduced processing in the other hemisphere in the brain (Kinsbourne, 1974 as cited in Miller and Schyb, 1989). It has been found that musical processing occurs in both the left and right hemispheres of the brain. Music and other non-verbal tasks are processed through the right hemisphere of the brain, while processing that requires a strong language...

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