1.) Link:

It seems counterintuitive that listening to pleasurable music, rather than neural music, can have many positive affects on reinforcement learning and reward-based decision making in music therapy and education.

Dopamine release plays a major role in the rewarding aspect of music. In certain studies, it has been shown that people with greater dopamine efficacy learn better to approach rewards. Those with lesser dopamine efficacy instead learn better to avoid punishments. In this specific study, it is also shown that accuracy and response-time is notably increased in a subject listening to pleasurable music rather than neural music.

Musical pleasure has the ability to influence task performance, which could have many implications within neuroscience, neuroaesthetics, learning, and musical therapy. It also offers an ecological and dynamic approach to investigating reward-based decision making in many practical applications in education and therapy. Parkinson’s disease represents a particularly promising avenue for future research on musical pleasure, as music therapy has already shown to improve motor and cognitive ability.

Music is intensely important and pleasurable to many people. With further investigation into how musical pleasure can affect reinforcement learning, its influence could lend itself to many applications in education and therapy.

2.) Link:

It seems counterintuitive that being loud, outspoken, and rebellious is what always seems make a successful artist when it’s also what makes an unsuccessful student. It seems to most aspiring artists that more success can come from breaking the law rather than sticking to it.

In reality though, education status doesn’t define or influence success. Schools don’t make successful people, they merely provide opportunities and it is the student’s decision to grab those opportunities. Once ambition meets those opportunities, many great things can happen.

Ultimately, someone’s journey to success can’t be defined by if they chose education or not. The person that decides not to move forward, stays in one place, and who’s experiences never change, is ultimately the lesser artist than the one who seeks opportunity. Education doesn’t make you a better artist, it just makes you different. Your art is only as strong as your experiences and how you decide to interpret and project those unique experiences.

“An obedient student with no ambition is almost as pointless as a dropout with no ambition.” (Hockley, 2018)

3.) Link:

It seems counterintuitive that a shown increase in productivity when listening to music is simply “just because” music makes people happy. Music has been proven to aid cognitive performance and work productivity. Ultimately, putting on a good song for the moment can help anyone stay focused and productive.

Relating back to the previous article on musical pleasure, by associating a reward behavior like music with a desirable outcome like getting work done, you train your rain to associate positive behavior with hormonal reward (dopamine release). In this specific study, a significant increase in mood, quality of work, concentration, and productivity was shown while listening to music. Adversely, listening to music you already know or to what can be defined as “catchy pop music” is shown to decrease performance.

Counterintuitively, musicians are always analyzing what they’re hearing so rather than listening to music, ambient sound can be used to take away the distracting elements of music. Background noise is shown to have an increased effect on productivity when performing creative tasks. Nature sounds can reduce stress as well as increase productivity. Ultimately, listening to the right music at the right time can help you stay focused and productive

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3 Responses to Summaries–ohsosillybones

  1. davidbdale says:

    Just a quick note to acknowledge I’ve seen your Summaries. Insufferable feedback to follow.

    I see you’re finding your own counterintuitive sources that match your research interest, OhSo. That’s a great strategy.

    Hoxley’s quote is fantastic.

    Here’s a similar insight: The man who does not read good books has no advantage over the man who can’t read them. —Mark Twain

  2. ohsosillybones says:

    I’d like broader feedback in relation to the quality of the content and way the content can be better conveyed as “counterintuitive”.

  3. davidbdale says:

    1.) Link:

    Your first article is extremely dense, and I’m certain I misunderstand much of it, but it’s also intensely fascinating.

    Thus, the activity of the NAc during pleasurable music listening can be thought of as reward prediction errors, with pleasant musical surprises reflecting large positive errors . . . listening to pleasant as opposed to scrambled musical excerpts revealed . . . perception of schematic tonal structures. . . the overlapping activation patterns of musical pleasure and reward-based learning may thus reflect a common reliance on reward prediction errors.

    What fascinates me about that, to the extent I understand the counterintuitive aspect of the study, is that we might expect “reinforcement learning” to occur when anticipated or predicted results are achieved. But much of the pleasure (particularly for trained musicians listening to unfamiliar music) of listening to music comes from surprise, the moments when music defies expectation. How does having one’s expectations thwarted relate to reinforcing an expected or desired behavior?

    2.) Link:

    I like your second summary very much, and I don’t need you to revise it for my sake. I do want to suggest, though, that an artist (even a groundbreaking, iconoclastic, pioneering artist) doesn’t necessarily act out personally. It’s fun and anecdotally entertaining (and persuasive) to focus on those who do, but thinking about my favorite artists and writers, it occurs to me that their ART misbehaves, not they. Teachers might do the world a service by failing to make their art play by the rules.

    3.) Link:

    I don’t know that I’ve understood the articles as you do, but I’m willing to be convinced. Is music the reward for doing better work? Or does the pleasure of listening to music during the performance of a task produce better outcomes? I do truly appreciate that musicians (or simply careful, experienced listeners) are distracted from jobs that require concentration by attending to and devoting mental energy to predicting melodies, tempos, rhythms, etc. I appreciate not having to insist that you think carefully about the work you’re reading.

    You can revise these summaries if you change your thinking about them, but I don’t need you to make your current thinking clearer. They succeed more than well enough to meet the requirements of this assignment.

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