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Review of Related Literature

presented to the Faculty of SHS Department
Hagonoy, Bulacan

in partial fulfillment of the requirements in


Hayagan, Jeraldine S.

Grade 12 – St. John XXIII

Reynaldo R. Pineda, LPT

Subject Teacher

Date of Completion

November 4, 2019
The Effect of Classical Music on Grade 11 Students’ Math Text Anxiety



Since anxiety and depression are two of the most common obstacles teens and young

adults face, more cases of it are reported every year, especially in children and teens.

According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA), 1 in every 8

children has anxiety. Students who have these disorders are at risk of suffering from poor

academic performance and resistance to anything school-related. Their learning is also

affected because these disorders can influence the working memory, which makes it hard

for the student to keep new information and remember previously learned information

("Impact of Anxiety," 2019). One type of anxiety is called 'math anxiety'. Major causes of

math anxiety include the pressure caused by time limits on tests, fear of public

embarrassment, and influence of teachers. Symptoms of math anxiety can get unusually

nervous, clammy hands, an increased heart rate, upset stomach, and lightheadedness.

Tobias (1990) have interviewed hundreds of college students with math anxiety. Some of

them believe that one would either be good with numbers or with words but they could not

be good with both. Students also complain that math offers little opportunity for debate or

discussion. Others are in favor of English and social studies better than math because they

can participate more in class and do not feel any pressure in finding an answer. Tobias also

stated, "We think of math anxiety as causing an emotional 'static' in the brain."
As a possible way to cope up with this problem, music is known to raise the spirit of

people throughout the centuries. The effect of music in mental and physical well-being was

already recognized by the Ancient Greeks. Pythagoras believed that music's mathematical

nature influenced the mind and the body and termed it 'musical medicine' (Pauwels,

Volterrani, Mariani, & Kostkiewics, 2014). The purpose of this literature review is to

summarize the existing literature concerning the effect of classical music on grade 11

students’ math text anxiety.

Body of Review

Our emotional states play a significant role in our education and study habits. According

to Segaren (2019), listening to music can make you happier because it increases the level

of dopamine, a neurotransmitter that promotes feelings of happiness and excitement. It is

known that increased levels of dopamine in healthy subjects improve executive functions,

cognition and attention (Pauwels et al., 2014). Studies find that people may do better in

solving problems when they have a positive mood compared to when they have a neutral

or negative mood. Music also lowers the amount of cortisol, a hormone responsible for

feelings of stress and anxiety. The type of music does matter. For example, relaxing music

such as classical music can also help students with stress and anxiety, therefore leading

them to study more efficiently. The theory that listening to music, specifically classical

music, can make people smarter, was developed in the early 1990s. It was called the Mozart

Effect by Dr. Gordon Shaw, who conducted research on the brain capacity for spatial

reasoning. However, it was later found to be misleading and some people now call it the

Mozart myth as they found zero evidence that IQ levels can actually increase when
listening to classical music but it may not be a complete myth, after all. Research does

suggest that although listening to classical music might not increase a students’ intelligence,

it could help students study better. Interestingly, such students find relief from math anxiety

when slow tempo classical music plays in the background. According to a study done in

France, published under Learning and Individual Differences, found that students who

listened to a lecture while listening to classical music performed better on a quiz better than

those who didn't. The researchers concluded that the music put the students at ease, making

them more receptive to information. For long study sessions, background music is helpful

because students are more focused and motivated when they are in a positive mood, which

helps them study for a longer time (Segaren, 2019).


Math anxiety is a kind of anxiety and its major causes are the pressure caused by time

limits on tests, fear of public embarrassment, and influence of teachers. One can cope up

with it by listening to classical music while studying. While there's still no proof of a

student's increase of intelligence through classical music, listening to it could help students

study better as it puts the students at ease, making them more receptive to information

(Segaren, 2019). The reviewed literature suggests that classical music is helpful in studying

as it gives positive vibes which causes the students to be more focused and to lengthen their

time of studying. Listening to classical music could help students with math anxiety in

improving their mathematical skills as it could calm them and give them a positive mood

and focus which can enable them to study math for a long period of time. In this way,

students with math anxiety can enhance their mathematical skill, hence overcoming their
math anxiety. The next step should be to research about other ways to overcome math

anxiety, and to develop ways to help students with math anxiety in applying these ways in

their study habits.


Impact of Anxiety and Depression on Student Academic Progress. (2019, May 5).

Retrieved from


Segaren, S. (2019, January 1). Does listening to music while studying make you a better

student?. Retrieved from



Pauwels, E., Volterrani, D., Mariani, G., & Kostkiewics, M. (2014, July 19). Mozart, Music

and Medicine. Retrieved from


Tobias, S. (1990). Math Anxiety: An Update. Retrieved from


1. All five of the available literature was used. 5

2. Each literature has been correctly paraphrased. 5

3. The literatures have been organized to form a 5

cohesive whole.
4. The RRL follows correct in-text citation. 5

5. References follow correct APA style. 5

6. The paper follows prescribed format: Arial – 5

12, double spaced, normal margins, justified
7. The RRL does not have more than three 5
grammatical/ typographical errors and other
errors in technical writing.
8. The paper is at least 50 percent similar to the -10
output of another student.
9. The output was submitted on or before the 5
Highest Possible Score / Total Points Earned 40