Author: Mingming Cui
“We break a lot of rules. It’s unheard of to combine opera with a rock theme, my dear. – Freddie Mercury
Thesis: Musical preference depends on the education/training ethnicity and functions. Classical is correlated to preference for classical music while those who prefer other genres mainly because of the symbolic value or for specific uses, such as relaxation or exercise.
After interviewing 167 students on Agnes Scott College and doing many hours of research, Cui drew some pretty interesting and possibly controversial conclusions.
I find that a lot of her data is best described by the pictures of her charts (below) and maybe it is because it is the end of the day and my brain is slightly fried; but I’ll also talk through a couple of her general findings.
She noticed some of the following things concerning college music programs, in particular the Agnes Scott College music program:
- fewer people get training at the college level
- when training before college occurs, the student is more likely to appreciate classic music
- musical training positively affects the love of classical music
- people with formal education tend to analyze music instead of just enjoying it
- students are not taking applied music at ASC for two major reasons: socioeconomic status and that classical classes are primarily offered in the music program
- for relax and sleep people tend to listen to classical music
- for exercise most people listen to pop, rock and hip hop
- music education, ethnicity and functions are three factors affecting musical preference
Cui admits that her limitations (gender, geography and amount of data) call for more research. Her suggestion to the ASC music department? Add different styles of music classes and give more financial aid for their applied music classes. I asked if she had shared her findings with them yet. Not yet…but maybe they’ll read this blog!
I’m signing off for the day. I enjoyed SpARC so much, thanks to all involved for their hard work.