Various studies show that music benefits our language abilities
Did you know that music can help you learn a new language? Although it seems incredible, music influences our ability to master other languages.
Thanks to music, more parts of the brain are stimulated at the same time, which contributes to improving the skills we need to learn a new language. For example, memory, the rhythm of language, and the understanding of messages.
There are several studies that prove this. These studies present research that explains why musicians usually find it much easier to speak other languages. And it is thanks to their training that they can better distinguish the specific sounds of a language.
Thanks to music, more parts of the brain are stimulated at the same time
For example, research by French scientist Daniel Schön confirms the benefits of music in language learning.
To prove it, this scientist created a list of six words without any meaning but with a large number of syllables in common. With these words, he created a sound file. He took 26 people and played the file for seven minutes, and asked them to list the words they had heard.
The scientist then repeated the experiment but, this time, the words were pronounced with intonation. In the first case, the correct answers were little more than chance, while in the second, and thanks to music, 64% of the words were correctly identified.
Amazing, right? Neuroscientists demonstrated the relationship between music and language learning.
A new study by @MIT suggests that “piano lessons have a very specific effect on kindergartners’ ability to distinguish different pitches, which translates into an improvement in discriminating between spoken words” https://t.co/b1EupRYttd
— Trinity College Ldn (@TrinityC_L) July 2, 2018
Another study, conducted by the McGovern Institute for Brain Research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), confirms that learning music improves our linguistic ability. In this case, the study was carried out with a group of 74 Chinese children between 4 and 5 years old.
The research showed that children who studied piano could better determine the pitch of the notes and, in the same way, recognise words in spoken language. This ability is very important when we begin learning our language as small children. When we are older, it is super necessary for learning a different language.
The scientists at the McGovern Institute believe it is more useful when learning new languages to have the ability to recognise different sounds than it is to read books. Therefore, they recommend that schools invest in musical training.
So, now you know: If you’re learning English or any other language, don’t dismiss the idea of signing up for music lessons.
And if you study both music and English, Trinity College London can help you with exams for degrees in both disciplines, which will allow you to evaluate your progress regularly.