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 ADD 2 MORE PAGES FOR INTRODUCTION on relationship of music and



Music is a pervasive component of culture. It exists all around us. According to

McDermott (2008), music is a ubiquitous element of our society, and has been found in

all known human cultures throughout history (Drieberg, 2013). Humans were already

playing such complexinstruments as bone flutes, Jew’s harps and percussive instruments

long ago in the earliestcivilizations (Weinberger, 2004).

Throughout history, music has remained a constant component of any human

culture. It is played in rites of passage, religious rituals, wedding celebrations, burials, or

just for amusement. In modern societies, music is an essential component in the movie

industry, advertising, and even for therapeutic purposes. In short, every aspect of our life

has music embedded in it. One only need imagine watching a horror film or a television

drama without background music or attending a wedding or church service without songs

to appreciate what music means in our lives.

Although music is hard to define without excluding any of the extant musical

traditions in the world, we tend to “know” music when we hear it. Among the elements of

music which are universally found in most cultures are pitch and scaling, timbre, rhythm
and meter. Some philosophers argue that music should be defined as a kind of “mental

image” and that the physical aspects of sound are simply by-products of this image

(Microsoft® Encarta®, 2009). For the purposes of this study however, the researchers will

stick to the traditional definition of music as the artful arrangement of sounds across time


Music has an aesthetic as well as a communicative function. Music as a form of

art is generally noncontroversial and is outside the scope of this study. The

communicative functions of music include the use of music for specific rituals, traditions,

and events and the use of music to convey emotions.

That music effectively conveys emotions is beyond question, as Hevner’s (1937)

classic research has demonstrated (Drieberg, 2013). That music induces these emotions

upon listeners is another matter. Although it is almost common sense to say that music

affects our emotions, surprisingly little is known about this from previous studies

(Liljeström, 2011).

According to Schubert (2007), a distinction needs to be made between perceived

emotion and felt emotion (Drieberg, 2013). Perceiving emotion is a cognitive process and

simply involves the recognition of the emotion conveyed by a musical piece. Feeling

emotion, on the other hand, is an affective process, and involves the modification of the

listener’s emotional state after listening to the piece. In other words, a listener may

recognize the emotion in a piece of music without necessarily being affected by

it.However, recent evidence from a handful of survey studies suggests that music can

evoke quite a wide range of affective states. Among the most frequently felt musical
emotions, according to these survey studies, are: happiness, calm, nostalgia, love,

sadness, interest, hope, excitement, and longing, as well various synonymous emotion

terms (Juslin, 2010).

Music as we know it comes not only in various musical traditions and regional

styles, but also in a number of genres. Broadly speaking, a genre is a category of music

which can be distinguished from others by specific elements. However, there is virtually

no agreement on how to distinguish one genre from another, and many musical pieces

defy classification. Nevertheless, most of popular music can be lumped into a number of

genres and subgenres.

Being exposed to Western popular music, Filipinos are often familiar with genres

such as pop, rock, reggae, and rhythm and blues (R&B), and to a lesser extent, jazz,

blues, and classical music. Recent decades have also seen the proliferation of several

genres of electronic music which have recently been lumped together as electronic dance

music (EDM) – a term which is usually associated with parties, raves, and club culture.

EDM is especially popular among the youth today.

Each genre has its own styles and can potentially elicit powerful emotions in

listeners. Moreover, different genres usually come with different emotional content,

although there are several overlaps between genres. However, there is a dearth of

research concerning the effect of different genre preferences on listeners’ emotional

Every one of us can claim to have had his/her own emotional experiences with

music. The researchers hope to shed light on this phenomenon and determine whether

musical preference affects the emotional response of students.

Theoretical Framework


This study is anchored upon Juslin&Västfjäll’s BRECVEM model.

Juslin&Västfjäll developed a model of seven ways in which music can elicit emotion.

These are brain stem reflex, rhythmic entrainment, evaluative conditioning, emotional

contagion, visual imagery, episodic memory, and musical expectancy.

Brain stem reflex is the process whereby an emotion is induced by music because

one or more fundamental acoustical characteristics of the music are taken by the brain

stem to signal a potentially important and urgent event. All other things being equal,

sounds that are sudden, loud, dissonant, or feature fast temporal patterns induce arousal

or feelings of unpleasantness in listeners. Such responses reflect the impact of auditory

sensations – music as sound in the most basic sense.

Rhythmic entrainment is the process whereby an emotion is evoked by a piece of

music because a powerful, external rhythm in the music influences some internal bodily

rhythm of the listener (e.g. heart rate), such that the latter rhythm adjusts toward and

eventually 'locks in' to a common periodicity. The adjusted heart rate can then spread to
other components of emotion such as feeling, through proprioceptive feedback. This may

produce an increased level of arousal in the listener.

Evaluative conditioning is the process whereby an emotion is induced by a piece

of music simply because this stimulus has been paired repeatedly with other positive or

negative stimuli. Thus, for instance, a particular piece of music may have occurred

repeatedly together in time with a specific event that always made you happy (e.g.,

meeting your best friend). Over time, through repeated pairings, the music will eventually

come to evoke happiness even in the absence of the friendly interaction.

Emotional contagions the process whereby an emotion is induced by a piece of

music because the listener perceives the emotional expression of the music, and then

"mimics" this expression internally, which by means of either peripheral feedback from

muscles, or a more direct activation of the relevant emotional representations in the brain,

leads to an induction of the same emotion.

Visual imagery is the process whereby an emotion is induced in a listener because

he or she conjures up visual images (e.g., of a beautiful landscape) while listening to the


Episodic memory s the process whereby an emotion is induced in a listener

because the music evokes a memory of a particular event in the listener's life. This is

sometimes referred to as the "Darling, they are playing our tune" phenomenon.

Musical expectancy is the process whereby an emotion is induced in a listener

because a specific feature of the music violates, delays, or confirms the listener's
expectations about the continuation of the music.


Conceptual Framework

This study the responses of a number of students towards different musical genres

in terms of the seven ways in which music can elicit emotion as outlined in the theoretical

framework above. Musical preference is the independent variable while emotional

response is the dependent variable.

Figure1: Schematic Diagram


1. Pop
2. R&B 1. Brain stem reflex
3. Rock 2. Rhythmic entrainment
4. Blues 3. Evaluative conditioning
5. Jazz 4. Emotional contagion
6. Reggae 5. Visual imagery
7. Electronic dance music 6. Episodic memory
8. Classical music 7. Musical expectancy

Statement of the Problem

 Focus on musical preference & emotional response only

 Too many questions for sub problem – only 3 is needed.

 You need only Q1, Q2 and 3rd question for hypothesis.

Hypothesis: Is there a significant difference between the musical preferences of

the respondents to their emotional response as shown in the BRECVEM model?

This study seeks to determine whether or not different preferences of musical

genres/styles have an effect on the emotional responses of a sample of Grade 10 students

in Molave Vocational Technical School. Specifically, it seeks to answer the following


1. How many of the respondents preferred the following musical selections they

listened to?

a. Selection 1 (Blues)

b. Selection 2 (Classical Music)

c. Selection 3 (Electronic Dance Music)

d. Selection 4 (Jazz)

e. Selection 5 (Pop)

f. Selection 6 (R&B)

g. Selection 7 (Reggae)

h. Selection 8 (Rock)

2. How many of the respondents prefer the following genres?

a. Pop

b. R&B

c. Rock

d. Blues
e. Jazz

f. Reggae

g. Electronic Dance Music

h. Classical Music

i. Others

3. How did the respondents describe their personal emotional responses to each of

the different musical pieces?

4. Among the seven possible ways in which music can elicit emotional response,

which is the most evident based on the respondents’ responses?

a. Brain Stem Reflex

b. Rhythmic Entrainment

c. Evaluative Conditioning

d. Emotional Contagion

e. Visual Imagery

f. Episodic Memory

g. Musical Expectancy

5. Does musical preference have a significant effect on emotional response?


The researchers formulated the following hypothesis against which the findings of

the study will be tested.

H0 = Musical preference has no significant effect on emotional response.

Significance of the Study

This study is important because it takes the theory of emotional response to music

to the field by eliciting responses from the listeners themselves. In this way, the point of

view of the listener is primarily considered. This is important because the perception of

the audience is always the primary factor to be considered in judging the effectiveness of

any art form. This may have important consequences to the use of music in the


Theresults of this study will particularly help teachers in the effective use of

music in teaching by maximizing the effects of music on emotion and its possible bearing

on students’ performance of tasks.

This also will help students learn about the different emotions that may be elicited

by different musical styles and genres and use this information to maximize the use of

music in their academic pursuits.

Lastly, this will serve as a preliminary study and as a starting point for more

comprehensive studies involving more sophisticated techniques.

Scope and Limitations

This study focuses on the effect of musical genre preference on emotional

response as self-assessed by Grade 10 students of Molave Vocational Technical School.

The study is limited by the fact that the data gathered are based on the respondents’ own

perception of the emotions they felt upon listening to certain musical pieces, as well as

their responses regarding emotional response to music in general.

The study also does not include a discussion of physiological responses apart

from those that may arise from the respondents’ subjective responses.

Most importantly, this study is limited to the examination of emotional response

to music based on the seven possible causes as outlined in Juslin&Västfjäll’s BRECVEM

model (see Theoretical Framework).

Definition of Terms

Aesthetic Function – the function of music as an art.

Blues – a genre of music originated by African Americans in Southern USA around the

end of the 19th century; usually characterized by a call-and-response pattern, the blues

scale and specific chord progressions, and certain stylistic elements such as blue notes

and walking basses.

BRECVEM model – a theoretical model of emotional response to music developed by

Juslin&Västfjäll during the early 2000s.

Classical Music – a genre of art music rooted in the traditions of Western music,

including both liturgical and secular music; a more precise definition limits classical

music to pieces produced during the Classical Period (1750-1820) in Europe.

Communicative Function – the function of music in aiding or facilitating communication;

includes the use of music for specific rituals, traditions, and events and the use of music

to convey emotions.
Electronic Dance Music – a broad range of percussive electronic music genres made

largely for nightclubs, raves, and festivals; includes such styles as house, techno, dubstep,

trance, and their respective subgenres.

Emotion – a feeling elicited by a stimulus

Felt Emotion – refers to the change in the emotional state of the listener as a result of

listening to a certain musical piece.

Genre – refers to a category of music distinguishable from others in style, form or subject


Jazz – a musical genre originated by African Americans in New Orleans, USA during the

late 19th and early 20th centuries; usually characterized by swing and blue notes, call-and-

response vocals, polyrhythms and improvisation.

Music – refers to the artful arrangement of sounds through time.

Musical Tradition – refers to the set of musical expressions practiced by a particular

cultural group.

Perceived Emotion – refers to the listener’s perception of the emotion being conveyed by

a musical piece.

Pop – an inclusive term which includes all music produced for a broad audience. For the

purposes of this study, pop music refers to an eclectic style of music which borrows

elements from other styles, uses basic song formats (e.g. verse-chorus structure), and uses

repeated choruses, melodic tunes and hooks.

R&B (rhythm & blues) – a genre of African-American music which originated in the

1940s; more specifically, it refers to a contemporary style which originated in the 1980s

and combines elements of soul, funk, hip hop, and dance music.

Reggae – a musical style which originated in Jamaica in the late 1960s; usually

characterized by offbeat or inverted rhythms, staccato chords, and certain elements of

blues and jazz such as the call-and-response pattern and the blues scale.

Rock – a broad genre of music which originated in the US and UK during the 1950s;

usually characterized by a 4/4 time signature, verse-chorus form, and the use of certain

instruments such as electric guitars, basses, drums, and synthesizers.