Effect of Music Instruction on Cognitive Development: A Review

Arkoprovo Paul, Megha Sharda, Nandini C Singh


There has been a dramatic increase in investigations of the
effect of musical training on cognitive development in recent years. Basic musical competence, acquired through everyday exposure to music during development, enables listeners to tap to musical beat, memorize, recollect and reproduce familiar tunes and rhythms, and experience the emotions expressed in music, regardless of formal training. Research over the past decade has highlighted that formal musical training also has remarkable non-musical cognitive benefi ts. We review recent literature for effects of formal musical training on cognitive development and also discuss recent work in our laboratory. While our review suggests that music instruction has a number of positive effects, further work is required to establish the role of early musical instruction when part of a school curriculum.

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