COGNITIVE-EMOTIONAL RESPONSE TO MUSIC AS A FUNCTION OF MUSIC AND COGNITIVE COMPLEXITY


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Abstract

One hundred twenty-two undergraduate students were given the Conceptual Systems Test (CS Test) to determine level of cognitive complexity or style. The 30 most complex (abstract) and 30 least complex (concrete) subjects were retained for the main study. These subjects listened to six music segments presented in a random sequential fashion, to determine how abstract and concrete thinkers differ on a number of dependent measures. Results showed no differences between these two groups when either a free association or emotionality measure was used. However, the two groups did significantly differ on absolute preference scores. In addition, the closer the music being played was to the student's most preferred piece of music, the more that person liked the piece being played. The theoretical implications of Harvey, Hunt and Schroder (1961), and Schroder, Driver and Streufert (1967), were discussed along with the study's research implications.

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