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How comparable are children and adults in perceiving an optimal tempo for music?

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Debbie Riby


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This research compared the abilities of children and adults to perceive an optimal tempo for pieces of music. Participants heard eight melodies played at a range of tempi and made a 2AFC of "too fast" or "too slow" for each presentation. Children (aged between 5 to 11 years) and adults (aged between 17 to 54 years) showed the same variation in perceived optimal tempi across melodies. The same variation in optimal tempi was also observed when pitch variations were removed. This suggests that the rhythmical structure was responsible for the perceived optimal tempi for these pieces of music. (C) 2012 Acoustical Society of America. []

Publication metadata

Author(s): Quinn S, O'Hare O, Riby DM

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Journal of the Acoustical Society of America

Year: 2012

Volume: 131

Issue: 5

Pages: 3595-3598

Print publication date: 01/05/2012

ISSN (print): 0001-4966

ISSN (electronic): 1520-8524

Publisher: Acoustical Society of America


DOI: 10.1121/1.3651236


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