The Effects of Tempo and Harmony on Sustained Attention

Prahlad, Saldanha (2018) The Effects of Tempo and Harmony on Sustained Attention. UG thesis, Azim Premji University.

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People listen to music while doing several other activities which make the study of how it affects attention important. There are several elements of music and these vary between different tracks. The two elements that were of concern to this study were harmony and tempo. The study examined how these two elements of music affect sustained attention, and the study was done in a manner that was more controlled than what several previous studies that have examined music have done. Participants were asked to do a psychomotor vigilance takes that varied in tempo and harmony. The results of this study show that harmony and the interaction between harmony and tempo have significant effects on sustained attention. This study is helpful in advancing the field of research on music in relation to psychology. In addition to the main study mentioned above, two pre-studies were done. The first pre-study was on the deterioration of response times while doing the psychomotor vigilance task and the results indicate that a person could do the vigilance task for two consecutive five minute stretches with a two minute break in between and there would be no significant difference in the response times between those stretches. This has implications for research using the vigilance where a participant doing the task could do multiple conditions. The second pre-study investigated comparisons of dissonance in chords made of square waves. The results show that the largest difference in consonance of harmonies was between minor and augmented chords. This goes against previous findings1 and has implications of how future research on consonance should progress.

Item Type: Thesis (UG)
Authors: Prahlad, Saldanha
Subjects: The arts; fine & decorative arts
Divisions: Azim Premji University > School of Arts and Sciences
Full Text Status: Restricted
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