Should You Listen To Music While Doing Intellectual Work? It Depends On The Music, The Task, And Your Personality



Given how many of us listen to music while studying or doing other cerebral work, you’d think psychology would have a set of clear answers as to whether the practice is likely to help or hinder performance. In fact, the research literature is rather a mess (not that that has deterred some enterprising individuals from making bold claims).

Now, in the hope of injecting more clarity and realism into the literature, researchers have tested the common-sense idea that the effects of background music on mental task performance will depend on three things: the nature of the music, the nature of the task, and the personality of the person. Continue reading →

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