Associations Between Musical Experience and Auditory Discrimination
Background: Auditory processing is affected by both musical experience and native language. However, which aspects of auditory perception are influenced by musical experience for which language groups is not known.
Objectives: To identify how musical experience is related to auditory discrimination for English speakers, and to compare these results with previous literature on other languages.
Design: Scores on the Goldsmith Musical Sophistication Index self-report questionnaire were correlated to six aspects of auditory discrimination. Auditory discrimination was measured using three two-choice forced decision tasks for simple pitch discrimination, simple duration discrimination, and complex duration discrimination.
Results: Only pitch discrimination was significantly related to musical experience after correction for multiple correlations.
Conclusions: Improved pitch discrimination has been associated with musical experience in many studies and in many language groups. However, other aspects of auditory perception appear to have a different relationship with musical experience depending on native language.There are many questions remaining, and a direct comparison of different languages for how musical experience affects auditory discrimination is needed.
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