Neuroscientists have discovered a link between happy feelings and listening to music – and found that Queen’s Don’t Stop Me Now is the perfect happy song.
Scientists developed a formula for happy songs by studying 126 songs from a 50 year period, and asked people to pick which songs make them feel the happiest. They then looks at the beat, key, theme and lyrics of the most popular songs.
They discovered that the average tempo of a ‘feel-good’ song was significantly higher than the average pop song. The tempo of the average song is 118 beats per minutes, while feel good songs had an average tempo of around 140-150 beats per minutes. Music applicants should consider how this theory surrounding tempo is contrasted by theories of cognitive dissonance, whereby music sounds happy but the lyrics are morose, and if this has an impact on the happiness of the listener.
Psychology applicants should analyse the premises and conclusions of this discovery. Is it fair to say Don’t Stop Me Now is the happiest song, given the survey was of 2000 people from one country and doesn’t offer a clear definition of happiness? Is it enough to reduce happiness in music to tempo, rather than paying attention to more qualitative data like lyrics?
- Experimental Psychology & Psychological and Behavioural Sciences (PBS) Reading List If you are interested in Psychology, Oxford offers the Psychology... Read more >
- Maths Puzzle: The Age of Census A census-taker knocks on a door, and asks the woman... Read more >
- What’s the Most Important Part of Your Application? An application to Oxford or Cambridge involves various different elements,... Read more >
- February’s Top News Stories Read more about some of the biggest news stories to... Read more >
- University Admissions Tests: How Would You Reply? Here we have a few questions and answers to sample... Read more >
- TSA Oxford mini mock & answers Thinking is very important to Oxford, so they’ve devised an... Read more >
- Download a Biology Personal Statement “Assisting with the post mortem of a dairy cow during... Read more >
- The Architecture of an Education: what are colleges all about? Explaining the difference between Oxford and Cambridge colleges and the... Read more >
- Download a Medicine Personal Statement 2 “Further work experience has highlighted some of the demands and challenges... Read more >
- PAT overview If you’re applying for Physics, Materials or a relevant joint... Read more >
- Sports psychology for interviews Channel your inner champion Major sports personalities use these techniques... Read more >
- For Your Reference: Admissions Test Factfiles The majority of Oxford courses, and an increasing number of... Read more >
- Admissions Tests: our tips as featured in the Independent Last year, the Independent asked us to provide some simple... Read more >
- Your Open Day Guide Open Days can be an extremely useful way of finding... Read more >
- What Results Do You Need In Your Exams? At the heart of every Oxbridge offer is an excellent... Read more >
- Download a Law Personal Statement “Participating in a Citizenship Foundation Mock Trial Competition during Year... Read more >
- HAT overview If you’re applying for History, or its joint schools, you... Read more >
- Download a Medicine Personal Statement Read our sample Medicine personal statement for application tips. Read more >
- Stats report: our annual survey Every year, we survey hundreds of applicants who applied the... Read more >
- Application Calendar Making an application to Oxford or Cambridge can seem like... Read more >
- TSA Cambridge mini mock & answers The Thinking Skills Assessment is required for a number of... Read more >
- Oxford or Cambridge? Many applicants know that they want the best, but when... Read more >
- Personal Statement Workbook Download A personal statement is a unique document which is all... Read more >
- Taking a Gap Year There are a number of advantages to taking a gap... Read more >