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Effect of music on children's cognitive development

Music as a part of our daily life, it can make people feel pleasure, peaceful, or exciting. Children as the future generation in our society are expected to have optimal development and growth. During childhood, cognitive development plays an important role in construction of thought processing ability and it is associated with physical development and nervous system development. As we know music is considered to be the efflorescence of human thought, this project aims to evaluate the effect of music listening and training on children’s cognitive development, as well as investigate effect of different types of music such as calm music, aggressive music, familiar music and unfamiliar music on cognitive development. The systematic review will identify and appraise the evidence of studies that related to our research question.

All relevant studies published from 1990 to 2013 were searched and identified when conducting an electronic literature search. There were 338 papers found through the database including Pubmed, SAGE and Google Scholar with a combination of specific keywords. After considering the inclusion and exclusion criteria, ten studies were found related to research questions and adopted for this systematic review.

The ten studies were from four countries and included a total number of 8,836 subjects aged 4 to 12 years old. Randomized controlled trials, quasi-experimental studies, longitudinal studies, cross-sectional study were used in this systematic review. The studies included short-term and long-term effect of music listening and training on children. Most of the studies assigned participants to one group that had exposure to music and another group that had no exposure to music. For music listening groups, their performance of cognitive test was better than the group without music listing. Calm and pleasant music was more positive than aggressive music. Familiar music also had more impact on children’s cognitive ability. For music training groups, the effect of music gave impact on children’s cognitive development positively. Children received music training had increased cognitive ability.

Overall, the effect of different music listening and music training had been evaluated. The impact of music will be more effective if music is enjoyed by the listener. However, due to the publications of articles were only in English, not all of the studies design of articles were randomized control trials and some studies had small sample size such as thirty to seventy in this systematic review, further research is needed. / published_or_final_version / Public Health / Master / Master of Public Health
Date January 2013
CreatorsOuyang, Sining, 欧阳斯宁
PublisherThe University of Hong Kong (Pokfulam, Hong Kong)
Source SetsHong Kong University Theses
Detected LanguageEnglish
RightsThe author retains all proprietary rights, (such as patent rights) and the right to use in future works., Creative Commons: Attribution 3.0 Hong Kong License
RelationHKU Theses Online (HKUTO)

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