Project Outline

Does the number of levels of beats or pulses in a song enhance people’s perception of the groove? How does tempo affect this perception?

As for our experimental design, we plan to have 6 conditions, created by 2 variables

# of Pulse Levels: We plan to enlist a panel of musical experts to determine the number of salient pulse levels present in the songs we use in the experiment, and then will divide these songs into high and low categories based on this measurement.  Low (1-2 pulse levels), High (3-5 pulse levels)

Tempo: Slow (< 74 bpm), Medium (75 – 99 bpm), Fast (> 100 bpm)

Low # of Pulse Levels

High # of Pulse Levels

Slow Tempo

Low # + Slow Tempo

High # + Slow Tempo

Medium Tempo

Low # + Medium Tempo

High # + Medium Tempo

Fast Tempo

Low # + Fast Tempo

High # + Fast Tempo

We plan to randomly take songs (unchosen as of yet) from the list compiled by Janata et al., and use these in the experiment, and it is these that will be reviewed by the panel of experts

Subjects, after listening to the pieces, will be asked about the grooviness of the music, using the same scale as Janata et al., which was a 7 point scale with 1 = least groove and 7 = most groove.

The experiment will likely be administered by an online questionnaire with music inserted into it. Participants will respond for each song directly after it plays, and will be told to feel free to move along to the music. There will also be questions to address musical and cultural background of the subject, and whether they are familiar with the songs played.

We hypothesize that songs that are reported having more salient beat levels will be rated as groovier, and that the songs with slow tempos will also be rated as more groovy than those with faster tempos.

2 thoughts on “Project Outline

  1. Make sure you post your articles from the background research (3-4 articles), including the citation, abstract, and liked PDF, if available.

  2. As we discussed in the workshop, the grooviness rating would be a dependent measure, even though you are picking representative samples from Janata that were already rated. The idea, is that this way you can see if their results are replicated.

    The second independent variable would be the number of salient pulse levels (or some other measure you calculate based on the experts’ ratings). You could do a preliminary analysis comparing experts’ ratings with grooviness rating from Janata as well. Your hypothesis would be something like: Music with a higher number of salient pulse levels (or music that has a higher beat salience rating, or both) has a higher grooviness rating. This would be a correlational analysis.

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