How Listening to Music Affects Students before Exams

When the end of the term approaches, most students start getting ready for final exams. This is a hectic season. There are a lot of notes and books to read and review. And for many, there is a long playlist to listen to.

During this time, many students hire a cheap essay writing service such as CheapWritingHelp to help them with their academic papers fast and professionally. This way, they can devote more time to going over their course notes. Nevertheless, it is important to discuss the effects that listening to music has on students before the exams. Is it a good thing to do? Or, does it distract students and make them lose their concentration?

The opinions vary. Some students argue that listening to music helps them to relax and release the tension caused by the upcoming exams. For others, listening to music while studying before exams is an absolute no. Hence, let us first take a look at the pros and cons that some students claim to experience.

Pros of Listening to Music before Exams

The students that prefer listening to music while studying for exams argue that this practice is beneficial. There is little doubt that in general, listening to music is good. It reduces anxiety and helps to relax. But some claim that, listening to music before the exams also:


  • Improves memory and concentration;
  • Foster your creativity, especially if you listen to classical music. Many refer to this phenomenon as the ‘Mozart Effect;’
  • Helps you to ignore outside distractions. Thereby, you can stay longer at your desk studying for your exams;
  • Keeps the good mood and the spirits high. In such a favorable mental state, the retention of information is significantly greater.


The so-called Mozart Effect has been demonstrated to improve the spatial-temporal reasoning of those who listen to Mozart’s compositions. This claim has been extended to say that, in general, listening to Mozart music makes you smarter.

It is clear, however, that not all the students will listen to classical music. Thus, let us take a look at the opinions of the detractors of the benefits of music while studying.

Cons of Listening to Music before the Exams

Some students claim that listening to music while studying for upcoming exams do more harm than good. This is particularly true if the student has concentration problems. Some research results suggest that silence is better than any type of music for demanding tasks like studying. Hence, this invalidates the Mozart Effect.

Listening to songs can have an even more damaging effect. Some students claim that they soon lose concentration and pay more attention to the lyrics of the songs. As a result, they end up singing along and forget about the preparation for their exams.

A scientific study about the effect of background music on the ability to memorize was performed in 2010. The results demonstrated that the type of music plays a role in memorization performance. However, the people that were not exposed to any kind of music performed the best.

Whether you like or dislike the music while studying plays a role, the study found. But still, avoiding music gave the best results. The study also identifies that music without many variations in pitch and acoustic level has a less detrimental effect.

Should You Listen to Music While You Study for Your Exams?

In light of the two conflicting positions, it is you who must have the final answer to the question. There are scientific studies that have found cognitive benefits from listening to music. Other studies contradict these claims.

Hence, why should not give it a try and decide for yourself? You know yourself better. If you are good at multitasking, you probably will not have any problem listening to music while you study. But if you have problems in getting concentrated on something important you are doing, silence can be your best companion.

Next time you find yourself studying for an exam, turn on your favorite music. How do you feel? Are you relaxed? Are you more alert? Does not music make any difference? See whether music gives you more motivation and energy to continue studying. Or if, by the contrary, makes you feel lazy and unmotivated to go on.

More importantly, do you notice any change in your concentration? Do you feel distracted? But even if you think the music is distracting you, you can try listening to a different music style. Perhaps you should turn the volume down. Eventually, you may find the optimal playlist to study for exams.

Listening to music is one of the greatest pleasures in life. Try to find out whether you can enjoy music and study for your exams at the same time. Optimize your playlist and settings for this goal.