Blog

A few words on fieldwork research.

Fieldwork is the collection of data in a natural environment, usually in person by a single, or a team of researchers. Its aim is to collect data (quantitative, qualitative, ethnographic, etc.) of high ecological validity in a natural location. This does not necessarily mean that it will be an “exotic” location. It can be anywhere … Continue reading A few words on fieldwork research.

SMPC 2019 Conference

On 5-7 August 2019, three of our lab members (Annaliese Micallef Grimaud, Scott Bannister, Kelly Jakubowski) gave talks at the Society for Music and Perception (SMPC) conference in New York City, hosted by New York University. It was a very full programme (156 talks, 164 posters, 7 symposia, 1 keynote), with presentations spanning a broad range … Continue reading SMPC 2019 Conference

Crowdsourcing in Music Psychology

One of the ongoing discussion topics in the MSL is recruiting participants. We all carry out traditional lab studies, meeting participants in person in highly controlled circumstances, where we are confident participants can take part in experiments comfortably and without distraction. This practice has been a mainstay of psychological research for decades. However, working in … Continue reading Crowdsourcing in Music Psychology

On the science of mind-wandering and how music can contribute to it

Our minds are travelling all the time: at work, in class, while commuting, even when making love (Killingsworth & Gilbert, 2010). The urge to escape the present moment is so pressing that many of us decide to invest considerable amount of time and money in training our brains to mindfulness, in the hope of cracking the … Continue reading On the science of mind-wandering and how music can contribute to it

Is the Perception of Consonance and Dissonance Universal?

In 1996 the prestigious Nature journal published an intriguing report by Marcel Zentner and Jerome Kagan entitled Perception of Music by Infants. The results suggested that infants prefer consonance (the relative attractiveness of different pitch combinations) over dissonance (the relative unattractiveness of different pitch combinations). The findings brought some much-needed light on the age-old debate regarding the role of … Continue reading Is the Perception of Consonance and Dissonance Universal?

On fitting in: Triumphs and challenges of a psychologist in a music department

Because my academic background is split essentially 50/50 between music and psychology, I found myself after my PhD not only daunted by trying to navigate the academic job market (as I assume most recent PhD graduates are), but even quite unsure of what type of academic department I wanted to work in. Having completed my … Continue reading On fitting in: Triumphs and challenges of a psychologist in a music department

Music & Science Symposium 2018: Highlights of the Event

Last month, the Music & Science Lab held its third Music & Science Symposium; a one-day event at the Music Department at Durham University. The day was jam-packed with interesting talks on diverse topics from researchers, both from Durham University and other Universities. One of the main focuses of this symposium was to be a … Continue reading Music & Science Symposium 2018: Highlights of the Event