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Psychology. The aim of was to see if lyrical music or instrumental music affects peoples performance on a word search task.

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Introduction

Abstract The aim of was to see if lyrical music or instrumental music affects peoples performance on a word search task. An opportunity sample was used, comprising 12 participants aged between 16-64 years (6 males/6 females) who were visitors the experimenters home. The two songs played and the two different word searches were used as a control. Using the Wilcoxon signed rank test, the observed value of W (11.5) is less than the critical value (17) with a 5% level of significance, the null hypothesis is rejected and the experimental hypothesis that there will be a significant increase in the score on the word search in instrumental music compared to lyrical music is accepted. The study succeeded to provide evidence to support the aim that lyrical music affects performance more than instrumental music. Background Sara B. Kirkweg investigated the effects of music on memory, using psychology students and three conditions; classical music by Haydn, white noise and heavy metal music by Metallica. Participants were asked to visually study a picture projected on a screen at the front of the room for 30 seconds. The picture was taken away and participants were then asked to answer a questionnaire about the picture. A non-significant trend for music type was found. ...read more.

Middle

Ethics - There were no ethical issues that occurred, as their results were kept anonymous and I debriefed them afterwards by telling the aim of the study and what their results would be used for. Measurement and analysis - The scores were collected after one minute and recorded in a table. A table and bar chart were used to show the results that there wasn't much difference in scores. Results Table 1 - Descriptive stats for lyrical and non-lyrical music Mean Median Mode Range Lyrical 11.25 12 8,12,13,15 9 Non-Lyrical 11.33 12 15 10 A bar chart showing the mean scores on word searches of lyrical music compared to non-lyrical music The bar chart shows that there isn't much difference between the two conditions lyrical scoring 11.25 and non-lyrical 11.33. The range is the better definer of the scores, showing a difference between lyrical (9) and non-lyrical (10). Table 2 - Treatment of results N Tail Level of significance Critical Value Observed value Hypothesis Accepted 12/12 1 0.05 17 11.5 Experimental hypothesis As the observed value of W (11.5) is less than the critical value (17) with a 5% level of significance, the null hypothesis is rejected and the experimental hypothesis that there will be a significant increase in the score on the word search in instrumental music compared to lyrical music is accepted. ...read more.

Conclusion

When conducting the experiment a change made could be to give participants longer than one minute, as many of the participants complained they didn't have enough time although some did manage to find the 15 words within the minute. This also shows that the study has low ecological validity as it doesn't relate to real life as you would normally have as much time as needed to complete something and normally would not have loud music playing in the background instead you would have natural noises occurring and so next time could compare that to music instead. This then could show that my results are not useful to real life although it could be used to show that what music you listen to doesn't affect how well you remember something as the difference in mean scores was only 0.8. The data collected was quantitative data which allows me to easily compare it and draw conclusions from it but it doesn't give an insight into why people scored how they did, such as if they are good at word searches or didn't have much sleep or if the music did really affect them and if they felt they could have done better without it. So a questionnaire could be used afterwards to allow them to comment on their performance, thus giving better conclusions on the experiment. ...read more.

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