Music: Helpful or Distracting While Studying?


By: Favour Mamudu, Sullivan Junior and Olamide Olaleye, Sullivan Junior

With school back in session, many people find it difficult to focus when studying. Some people find that music makes them concentrate more while others prefer quiet. The real question is, is music appropriate for studying? Will it be of any assistance, or will it be a huge distraction?

School can be very overwhelming at times, causing students to become nervous. When you get home from school or if you’re doing remote studying, you’ll be exhausted from looking at a screen for eight hours straight. After a busy day, trying to do homework for three hours can leave you tired, but music can help certain students relax and set the mood. 

“Listening to music can be used to set the tone for studying,” said Uzoma Amandianeze, a Sophomore at Sullivan High School. “It aids in my concentration by keeping me in the mood to learn.” 

Also, Ms. Katelyn Lawrence, a music teacher at Sullivan High School, said, “I think that listening to music while studying can affect one’s mood which can then affect studying.  Just as music can hype someone up before a big game, I think that music can calm people and that music can help get someone in the right mindset to study.”

Most youths use music as a background tone, filtering and canceling out any other noises. 

Sofia Dimas, a senior at Sullivan High School, believes it is useful for learning as well as a variety of other purposes. 

“Because of its frequencies, or because it isn’t too busy and stimulating, some music can be ideal for some people. Music serves as background noise for me, allowing me to tune out non-work-related feelings.” 

When it comes to learning, she even reveals her artistic interests. “I believe it is suitable for learning or working as long as it is not too noisy or high pace. When I’m busy, I normally listen to classical or acoustic music, something relaxing.”

The type of music you listen to is usually determined by your mood and what you’re doing. Some people find that listening to particular music helps them stay focused and avoid distractions. 

“Often I listen to radios from my home country of Uganda,” Patrick Muyenzi, said, “but most of the time while I’m learning or doing my homework, I listen to gospel music and some rap from Polo G, but mainly Gospel music.” It’s possible that the gospel music is in English or Kinyarwanda. 

He also mentions how difficult it is to not get overwhelmed when listening to music. “Since I know most of the words of the songs I listen to, I do sing along with the music. I get distracted, but it has little impact on my productivity. I try my best to stay focused, but it’s impossible for me to do so 100 percent of the time. The music I listen to isn’t too distracting, and the beats aren’t too difficult to ignore. Furthermore, I listen to my music through headphones to shut out any other distractions and improve my concentration.” 

Music, in general, makes you want to study further, but this varies depending on the genre of music. You can’t study while listening to party music because you’re just asking to be distracted.

According to Lucero, a Junior at Sullivan High School, “It just depends on what you’re studying for and the music you’re playing. Listening to music can help you stay focused,” she said, “but it all depends on the music and yourself.”

“I’m more relaxed learning with lo-fi music,” said Kimberly Valle, Freshman at Sullivan High School. “However, when I learn Algebra, I find myself listening to a variety of music because it doesn’t always need me to read texts and instead requires me to solve equations.”

Listening to music, according to Isabella Anderson, a Junior at Sullivan High School, is kind of a distraction for her. “I have a hard time with this, which is why I normally don’t listen to music because it makes it possible for me to lose concentration,” she said. Essentially, she drifts off while listening to music and finds it difficult to focus.

It just depends on what you’re doing, the mood, and the music you’re listening to. When it comes to learning, everybody has various approaches that work with them. 

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