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The relationship between depression, anxiety and music preference

Kennedy, Joshua (2021) The relationship between depression, anxiety and music preference. Undergraduate thesis, Dublin, National College of Ireland.

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Aims: The current study sought to provide a greater understanding on disorders such as anxiety and depression and see how scores on self-report questionnaires directly impacted the ratings on happy and sad pieces of music and how these disorders can influence our musical preference.

Method: Three individual questionnaires were administered to participants (n=195) through social media which included a scale on depression (BDI), anxiety (BAI) and a music scale that included 10 pieces of happy music and 10 pieces of sad music in which the participant did not know which was which.

Results: Results showed that there was a small, negative correlation between Depression and Happiness music total (rs = -.174, n = 195, p < .015) which indicates that lower levels of depression are associated with higher rankings of the happy music but anxiety did not predict the rating outcome of the happy music and neither depression nor anxiety predicted the rating outcomes for the sad music.

Conclusion: Findings overall show that depression did predict the ratings on happy pieces of music but not to the same level that previous studies have found. The findings of this study challenge previous studies that have found different results and future studies should look at the inconsistencies in the research associated with this topic and may decide to focus on the conceptual aspects of research and music preferences along with disorders, personality and mood and if or how they directly impact our musical preference.

Item Type: Thesis (Undergraduate)
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > Psychology
M Music and Books on Music > M Music
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA790 Mental Health
Divisions: School of Business > BA (Honours) in Psychology
Depositing User: Clara Chan
Date Deposited: 12 Aug 2021 14:24
Last Modified: 16 Sep 2021 15:18

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