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- Verbal Memory Improved by Music
- In a study in the journal Nature, researchers studied a group
- female college students from the University of Hong Kong.
- of these students had at least six years of musical training
- Western musical instrument before age 12, and thirty of
- students had no musical training.
- The musical and non-musical students were closely matched
- terms of age, grade point average, and years of formal
- Researchers administered two types of tests to the college
- In the verbal memory test, students heard a list of 16 words
- aloud, and the students were asked to recall as many words
- possible. In the visual memory test, students briefly saw
- figures, and they were asked to draw the figures from memory.
- test was given three times.
- On the verbal test, the music students consistently outscored
- non-music students by an average of 16%. This means they
- remembered an average of 2.56 more words from a list of
- words than their non-music peers.
- On the visual test, there was no significant difference
- scores of the music students and non-music students.
- A 1995 study of the magnetic resonance images (MRI) of
- musicians' brains shows that the left planum temporale region
- larger in musicians than in non-musicians. This region of the
- is responsible for verbal memory, while the right planum
- temporale is responsible for visual memory. The difference
- brain structure and organization is believed to account for
- improved verbal memory demonstrated by musicians in the
- Source: "Music Training Improves Verbal Memory" by Agnes
- Chan, Yim-Chi Ho, and Mei-Chun Chuang, from the Chinese
- University of Hong Kong. Printed in Nature, Vol. 396,
- 12, 1998.
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