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The Mozart Effect

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The researchers explained the enhanced effect to be temporal (Rauscher, Shaw, & Ky, 1993). They attributed increased IQ scores to listening to Mozart’s piano sonata. The experiment findings support their hypothesis that there indeed is a co relation between cognitive functions and music perception. The change in IQ scores is attributed to music perception priming many areas of the brain including those responsible for spatial reasoning resulting in overlap of these areas (Jenkins, 2001). Other researchers who have conducted research based on the research of Rauscher et al discovered that listening to music had a significant effect on epileptics.

In one such experiment an unconscious male with 62 per cent epileptic activity was exposed to the same musical composition and the epileptic activity dropped by than more half to 21 per cent. In two other test subjects, activity was between 90 and 100 per cent before exposure to the musical composition but after only five minutes of exposure activity dropped to 50 per cent (Jenkins, 2001). In another experiment involving an 8 year old girl with Lennox Gastaut, childhood epilepsy, pro longed exposure to Mozart’s sonata resulted in a reduction of clinical seizures from 9 in the first 4 hours to 1 in the last five hours of her wakeful hours.

She was exposed to the condition for 10 minutes for every hour she was awake (Jenkins, 2001). Similarly this experiment has shed light on positive effects of music on spatial reasoning and performing mathematic problems. In an experiment on 3 and 4 year old who were given key board lessons for six months then subjected to spatial temporal reasoning tests performed better than counterparts who were given computer lessons for six months (Jenkins, 2001).

Similarly, children who took piano playing lessons had improved mathematics scores at school. This experiment highlights the importance and need for musical therapy when dealing with victims of brain trauma, autistic children and individuals who suffer from learning disabilities. Though this experiment is not a remedy to cognitive disabilities it can be used to strengthen these functions through extensive exposure to individuals which may lead to significant improvements to their disabilities or aid them to recover back to normalcy.

It is key to note that this research experiment did not take individual differences in spatial ability into consideration when conducting this experiment. Spatial ability is reasoning capability involving capacity to think of objects in three dimensions and the ability to make conclusions from partial information.

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