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Music, Health, and Wellbeing$
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Raymond MacDonald, Gunter Kreutz, and Laura Mitchell

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199586974

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199586974.001.0001

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Music Instruction and Children’s Intellectual Development: The Educational Context of Music Participation

Music Instruction and Children’s Intellectual Development: The Educational Context of Music Participation

Chapter:
Chapter 23 Music Instruction and Children’s Intellectual Development: The Educational Context of Music Participation
Source:
Music, Health, and Wellbeing
Author(s):

Eugenia Costa-Giomi

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199586974.003.0023

This chapter provides a historical overview of research on the intellectual benefits of music and the most popular interpretations of the research findings. After questioning such interpretations and providing alternative explanations, it describes selected experimental studies that were focused on the causal relationship between music instruction and intellectual prowess. The results of the many studies that observed children for a short period of time (i.e., up to one year), have shown convincing evidence that there are temporary cognitive benefits associated with music instruction. Such benefits include improvements in general IQ, spatial skills, and verbal tasks. Additionally, learning music produces structural and functional changes in the brain. Such changes are associated with improvements in sound processing, motor skill, and melodic and rhythmic discrimination. However, neurological investigations do not support the claim that music makes children smarted as the results have failed to show any neurological changes associated with improvements in IQ.

Keywords:   music, intelligence, intellectual prowess, music education, IQ

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