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Formal string instrument training in a class setting enhances cognitive and sensorimotor development of primary school children

Published in Frontiers in neuroscience. 2020, vol. 14, no. 567, p. 1-16
Abstract This cluster randomized controlled trial provides evidence that focused musicalinstrumental practice, in comparison to traditional sensitization to music, provokesmultiple transfer effects in the cognitive and sensorimotor domain. Over the last 2 yearsof primary school (10–12 years old), 69 children received group music instruction byprofessional musicians twice a week as part of the regular school curriculum. Theintervention group learned to play string instruments, whereas the control group (i.e.,peers in parallel classes) was sensitized to music via listening, theory and some practice.Broad benefits manifested in the intervention group as compared to the control groupfor working memory, attention, processing speed, cognitive flexibility, matrix reasoning,sensorimotor hand function, and bimanual coordination Apparently, learning to play acomplex instrument in a dynamic group setting impacts development much strongerthan classical sensitization to music. Our results therefore highlight the added value ofintensive musical instrumental training in a group setting within the school curriculum.These results encourage general implementation of such training in public primaryschools, thus better preparing children for secondary school and for daily living activities.
Keywords Musical instrumental practiceGroup settingCluster randomized controlled trialMultiple transfer effectsCognitiveSensorimotorMatrix reasoningString instruments
Note bioRxiv 829077
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Article (Published version) (1.7 MB) - public document Free access
Research groups Affective sciences
Centre LIVES
Cognitive Aging Lab (CAL)
Neuroscience de l'émotion et dynamiques affectives (NEAD)
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JAMES, Clara et al. Formal string instrument training in a class setting enhances cognitive and sensorimotor development of primary school children. In: Frontiers in Neurosciences, 2020, vol. 14, n° 567, p. 1-16. doi: 10.1101/829077 https://archive-ouverte.unige.ch/unige:128172

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Deposited on : 2019-12-20

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