Can music make you study better?

Posted on Tuesday, April 6, 2021

Author: Juan Barrera Mancheno, third year students.

Picture of a phone playing music

Can music help you study better?

The study of music started centuries ago, in the time of Mozart, Bach and Beethoven; it has been shown that music can help the brain organize and categorize information. When listening to music, you allow your brain to work in different areas, including those that are directly involve paying attention, making predictions, and improving memory, to name a few!


How music affects your brain

Just like a muscle, the brain needs regular exercise. And just by listening to music, you are stimulating certain neural pathways.

Listening to music also releases various hormones in the brain, the most important ones being dopamine (the neurotransmitter of happiness) and endorphins (the messenger hormone). By releasing dopamine, your brain reduces stress and creates feelings of joy, relaxation, and happiness. Endorphins are released when you move and produce energy; they are the reason why listening to an upbeat song at the gym makes you want to go all out. This has an enormous impact on your brain too. Endorphins also help relieve stress, but most importantly, they reduce anxiety.

Both dopamine and endorphins have a major impact on mood. By stimulating your brain with music, you can make your mind and body feel calm, focused, and relaxed. However, not all music provides the same results. 


Different vibes, different impact

Music genres such as rhythm and blues, chill house, deep house, meditation, country, and instrumental tend to work best at relieving stress because of their gentle melodies and mild tempos. 

In contrast, hard rock or music with too many lyrics can overwhelm your brain, disrupting your focus and making you feel even more stressed. Those music genres are better suited to a workout playlist since they tend to fill you with energy. It’s important to remember how you want to harness the energy that music can inspire in you.

If you are the type of student who pulls all-nighters, or who studies for long periods of times, music is a great way to stay focused and avoid drowsiness. But if you listen to Mozart at 2 a.m., chances are that you will fall asleep. 

There are over 1300 different music genres, so the best way to know what works for you is to experiment and get your brain into the groove!

Note: This article was written while listening to music!

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