Can musical transformations be implicitly learned?

Dienes, Zoltan and Longuet-Higgins, Christopher (2004) Can musical transformations be implicitly learned? Cognitive Science, 28 (4). pp. 531-558. ISSN 0364-0213

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The dominant theory of what people can learn implicitly is that they learn chunks of adjacent elements in sequences. A type of musical grammar that goes beyond specifying allowable chunks is provided by serialist or 12-tone music. The rules constitute operations over variables and could not be appreciated as such by a system that can only chunk elements together. A series of studies investigated the extent to which people could implicitly (or explicitly) learn the structures of serialist music. We found that people who had no background in atonal music did not learn the structures, but highly selected participants with an interest in atonal music could implicitly learn to detect melodies instantiating the structures. The results have implications for both theorists of implicit learning and composers who may wish to know which structures they put into a piece of music can be appreciated.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of Psychology > Psychology
Depositing User: Zoltan Dienes
Date Deposited: 06 Feb 2012 15:34
Last Modified: 29 Jul 2013 10:17
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