Resources and Information for Music Advocacy

Music Statistics

1)In a 1995 study in Hamilton, Ohio, string students who participated in pullout lessons averaged higher scores than non-pullout students in all areas of the Ohio Proficiency Test. 68% of the string students achieved satisfactory ratings on all sections of the test, compared to 58% of the non-pullout students.
-Michael D. Wallick, "A Comparison Study of the Ohio Proficiency Test Results Between Fourth-Grade String Pullout Students and Those of Matched Ability," Journal of Research in Music Education, 1998.

2)More music teachers are role models for minority students than teachers of any other subject. 36% of surveyed minority students identified music teachers as their role models, compared to 28% for English teachers, 11% for elementary teachers, and 7% for physical education teachers.
-"Music Teachers as Role Models for African-American students," Journal of Research in Music Education, 1993.

3)Researchers at the University of California and the Niigata Brain Research Institute in Japan have found an area of the brain that is activated only when reading musical scores.
-"Musical Brain - Special Brain Area Found for Reading Music Scores," NeuroReport, 1998.

4)The scores of elementary instrumental music students on standardized math tests increased with each year they participated in the instrumental program.
-"Music Training Helps Underachievers," Nature, May 26, 1996.

5)A 2000 Georgia Tech study indicates that a student who participates in at least one college elective music course is 4.5 times more likely to stay in college than the general student population.
-Dr. Denise C. Gardner, Effects of Music Courses on Retention, Georgia Tech, 2000.

6)On the 1999 SAT, music students continued to outperform their non-arts peers, scoring 61 points higher on the verbal portion and 42 points higher on the math portion of the exam.
-Steven M. Demorest and Steven J. Morrison, "Does Music Make You Smarter?," Music Educators Journal, September, 2000.

7)Students who participate in All-State ensembles consistently score over 200 points higher on the SAT than non-music students. This figure indicates that students can pursue excellence in music while also excelling academically.
-Texas Music Educators Association, 1988-1996.

8)Students with good rhythmic ability can more easily detect and differentiate between patterns in math, music, science, and the visual arts.
-"Rhythm seen as key to man's evolutionary development," TCAMS Professional resource Center, 2000.

9)College students majoring in music achieve scores higher than students of all other majors on college reading exams.
-Carl Hartman, "Arts May Improve Students' Grades," The Associated Press, October, 1999.

10)Of approximately 7,500 students at a medium-sized university between 1983 and 1988, music and music education majors had the highest reading scores of any students on campus, including those majoring in English, biology, chemistry, and mathematics.
-Peter H. Wood, :The Comparative Academic Abilities of Students in Education and in Other Areas of A Multi-Focused University," ERIC Document Number ED327480.

11)Music students demonstrate less test anxiety and performance anxiety than students who do not study music.
-"College-Age Musicians Emotionally Healthier than Non-Musician Counterparts," Houston Chronicle, 1998.

12)The average scores achieved by music students on the 1999 SAT increased for every year of musical study. This same trend was found in SAT scores of previous years.
-Steven M. Demorest and Steven J. Morrison, "Does Music Make You Smarter?," Music Educators Journal, September, 2000.

13)A majority of the engineers and technical designers in Silicon Valley are also practicing musicians.
-The Case for Sequential Music Education in the Core Curriculum of the Public School, Center for the Arts in the Basic Curriculum, 1997.

14)In a 2000 survey, 73% of respondents agree that teens who play a musical instrument are less likely to have discipline problems.
-Americans Love Making Music - And Value Music Education More Highly Than Ever, American Music Conference, 2000.

15)Students who can perform complex rhythms can also make faster and more precise corrections in many academic and physical situations, according to the Center for Timing, Coordination, and Motor Skills.
-Rhythm as Key to Music's Evolutionary Role in Human Intellectual Development, Center for Timing, Coordination, and Motor Skills, 2000.

16)A ten-year study indicates that students who study music achieve higher test scores, regardless of socioeconomic background.
-Dr. James Catterall, UCLA

17)A 1997 study of elementary students in arts-based programs concluded that students' math test scores rose as their time in arts education classes increased.
-"Arts Exposure and Class Performance," Phi Delta Kappan, October, 1998.

18)In a Scottish study, one group of elementary students received musical training, while another group received an equal amount of discussion skills training. After 6 months, the students in the music group achieved a significant increase in reading test scores, while the reading test scores of the discussion skills group did not change.
-Sheila Douglas and Peter Willatts, Journal of Research in Reading, 1994.

19)According to a 1991 study, students in schools with arts-focused curriculums reported significantly more positive perceptions about their academic abilities than students in a comparison group.
-Pamela Aschbacher and Joan Herman, The Humanities Program Evaluation, 1991.

20)Students who are rhythmically skilled also tend to better plan, sequence, and coordinate actions in their daily lives.
-"Cassily Column," TCAMS Professional Resource Center, 2000.

21)In a 1999 Columbia University Study, students in the arts are found to be more cooperative with teachers and peers, more self-confident, and better able to express their ideas. These benefits exist across socioeconomic levels.
-The Arts Education Partnership, 1999.

22)College admissions officers continue to cite participation in music as an important factor in making admissions decisions. They claim that music participation demonstrates time management, creativity, expression, and open-mindedness.
-Carl Hartman, "Arts May Improve Students' Grades," The Associated Press, October 1999.

23)A group of second grade students in inner-city Los Angeles received piano training twice a week, and they used specialized computer software that related the piano lessons to math concepts. On standardized math tests, 50% of the second graders scored as well as fifth grade students in affluent Orange County, California. The scores of the entire second grade group were equal to the scores of fourth grade students in Orange County.
-"Music on the Mind," Newsweek, July 24, 2000

24)Second and third grade students who were taught fractions through musical rhythms scored 100% higher on fractions tests than those who learned in the conventional manner.
-"Rhythm Students Learn Fractions More Easily," Neurological Research, March 15, 1999.

25)Students involved in arts programs had significantly higher class attendance rates than a matched comparison group.
-Pamela Aschbacher and Joan Herman,The Humanities Program Evaluation, 1991.

26)Classroom teachers in Rhode Island noted improved behavior and attitudes among a test group of students given intensive arts training.
-"Music Training Helps Underachievers," Nature, May 26, 1996.

27)More than nine out of ten people believe that schools should offer musical instruction as part of their regular curriculum.
-Americans Love Making Music - And Value Music Education More Highly Than Ever, American Music Conference, 2000.

28)Teachers in schools with strong arts programs report greater professional interest, motivation, self-development, and increased innovation in the classroom."
-Champions of Change federal study, 1999.

29)Ninth grade students in a Chicago arts program achieved reading scores that were a full grade level higher than students not in the program. All other variables, including race, gender, and socioeconomic status were equal in the study.
-CAPE Study, President's Council on the Arts and Humanities, 2000.

30)Practicing musicians demonstrate 25% more brain activity than non-musicians when listening to musical sounds.
-Exposure to Music is Instrumental to the Brain, University of Muenster.

31)People who participate in the arts live longer than others, according to a Swedish study.
-British Medical Journal, 1996

32)At-risk children participating in an arts program that includes music show significant increases in self-concept, as measured by the Piers-Harris Children's Self-Concept Scale.
-Project ARISE: Meeting the needs of disadvantaged students throughout the arts, Auburn University, 1992.

33)Martin Gardiner of Brown University tracked the criminal records of Rhode Island residents from birth through age 30, and he concluded the more a resident was involved in music, the lower the person's arrest record.
-"Music Linked to Reduced Criminality," MuSICA Research Notes, Winter 2000.

34)The part of the brain responsible for planning, foresight, and coordination is substantially larger for instrumental musicians than the general public.
-"Music On the Mind," Newsweek, July 24, 2000.

35)Students who participate in school band or orchestra have the lowest levels of current and lifelong use of alcohol, tobacco, and illicit drugs among any group in our society.
-H. Con. Res 266, United States Senate, June 13, 2000.

36)In a French study, the use of melodies was shown to stimulate speech recovery in stroke victims.
-Neurology, December, 1996.

37)Taking a music elective course is a better indicator that a students will stay in college than high SAT scores or high GPA.
-Dr. Denise C. Gardner, Effect of Music Courses on Retention, Georgia Tech, 2000.

38)A 1985 study by Edward Kent showed that student absence from class to study a musical instrument does not result in lower academic achievement. He found no difference in academic achievement between sixth grade students who were excused from class for instrumental study and those who were not, matching variables of sex, race, IQ, cumulative achievement, school attended, and classroom teacher.
-Cutietta, Hamann, and Walker, spin-offs: The Extra-Musical Advantages of a Musical Education, United Musical Instruments U.S.A., Inc., 1995.

39)Researchers at the University of California - Irvine reported that second grade students given four months of piano keyboard training, as well as time playing with newly designed computer software, scored 27% higher on proportional math and fractions tests that other children.
-Shaw, Graziano, and Peterson, Neurological Research, March 15, 1999.

40)Admissions officers at 70% of the nations major universities have stated that high school credit and achievement in the arts are significant considerations for admission to their institutions.

41)Physician and biologist Lewis Thomas studied the undergraduate majors of medical school applicants. He found that 66% of music majors who applied to medical school were admitted, the highest percentage of any group. 44% of biochemistry majors were admitted.
-"The Case for Music in the Schools," Phi Delta Kappan, 1994.

42)Music - specifically song - is one of the best training grounds for babies learning to recognize the tones that add up to spoken language.
-Sandra Trehub, University of Toronto, 1997.

43)Researchers at the University of Muenster in Germany have discovered that music lessons in childhood actually enlarge parts of the brain. An area used to analyze pitch of a musical note is enlarged 25% in musicians compared to people who have never played an instrument. The earlier the musicians were when they started musical training, the bigger this area of the brain appears to be.
-Pantev et al., Nature, April 23, 1998.

44)A research team exploring the link between music and intelligence reports that music training - specifically piano instruction - is far superior to computer instruction in dramatically enhancing children's abstract reasoning skills necessary for learning math and science."
-Dr. Frances Rauscher and Dr. Gordon Shaw, Neurological Research, University of California at Irvine, February, 1997.

45)There is a very high correlation between positive self-perception, high cognitive competence scores, healthy self-esteem, total interest, school involvement, and the study of music."
-O.F. Lillemyr, "Achievement Motivation as a Factor in Self-Perception," Norwegian Research Council for Science and Humanities.

46)On the basis of observation and experiments with newborns, neuroscientists now know that infants are born with neural mechanisms devoted exclusively to music. Studies show that early and ongoing musical training helps organize and develop children's brains.
-Susan Black, "The Musical Mind," The American School Board Journal, January, 1997.

47)Research shows that when a child listens to classical music, the right hemisphere is activated. However, when a child studies a musical instrument, both the right and left hemispheres of the brain are activated. Significantly, the areas that become activated are the same areas that are involved in analytical and mathematical thinking.
-Dee Dickinson, "Music and the Mind," New Horizons for Learning, 1993.

48)Students in two Rhode Island elementary schools who were given an enriched, sequential, skill-building music program showed marked improvement in reading and math skills. Students in the music program who has started out behind the control group achieved statistical equality in reading and pulled ahead in math.
-Gardiner, Fox, Jeffrey, and Knowles, Nature, May 23, 1996.

49)The arts are recognized as a core subject in the Goals 2000: Educate America Act approved by both houses of Congress in 1994.
-National Education Goals Panel

50)A two-year Swiss study involving 1,200 children in 50 schools showed that students involved in the music program were better at languages, learned to read more easily, showed an improved social climate, demonstrated more enjoyment in school, and had a lower stress level than non-music students.
-E.W. Weber, M. Spychiger, and J.L. Patry, 1993.

51)Research shows when the arts are included in a student's curriculum, reading, writing, and math scores improve.
-J. Buchen Milley, A. Oderlund, and J. Mortarotti, "The Arts: An Essential Ingredient in Education," The California Council of the Fine Arts Deans.

52)When researchers analyzed the NELS:88 database of the U.S. Department of Education, which tracked 25,000 students over a ten-year period, they discovered that students who were involved in music scored higher on standardized tests and reading tests than students not taking music courses. This finding was consistent for students of all socioeconomic backgrounds.
-Dr. James Catterall, UCLA

53)The Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania School District analyzed its 1997 dropout rate in terms of students' musical experience. Students with no ensemble performance experience had a dropout rate of 7.4%. Students with one to two years of ensemble experience had a dropout rate of 1%, and those with three or more years of performance experience had a dropout rate of 0.0%.
-Eleanor Chute, "Music and Art Lessons Do More Than Complement Three R's," Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, April 13, 1998.

54)Students with band and orchestra experience attend college at a rate twice the national average.
-Bands Across the USA

55)One in three of today's school-aged children will hold an arts-related job at some time in his or her career.
-Education Commission on the States.

56)Music therapists working with Alzheimer's patients have found that rhythmic interaction or listening to music resulted in decreased agitation, increased focus and concentration, enhanced ability to respond verbally and behaviorally, elimination of demented speech, improved ability to respond to questions, and better social interaction.
-"Carol Prickett and Randall Moore, "The Use of Music to Aid Memory of Alzheimer's Patients," Journal of Music Therapy, 1991.

57)Medical researchers have reported that subjects lowered both their systolic and diastolic blood pressure as much as 5 points (mm/Hg) and reduced their heart rates by four to five beats per minute following music listening sessions. People with high blood pressure can help keep their blood pressure down by listening to tapes of relaxing low frequency music in the morning and evening.
-Tony Wigram, "The Psychological and Physiological Effects of Low Frequency Sound and Music,"Music Therapy Perspectives, 1995.

58)Friedman (1960) studied the effect of instrumental students missing regular classroom instruction in reading and mathematics. The researcher concluded that the loss of regular classroom time did not hinder achievement on the Stanford Achievement test. In fact, a significant difference in reading scores was observed, favoring instrumental musicians.
Friedman, B. 1960. An Evaluation of the Achievement in Reading and Arithmetic of Pupils in Elementary School Instrumental Music Classes. Dissertation Abstracts International.

59)Kvet(1985) compared reading, language, and math achievement of sixth graders and found "no significant difference in achievement between students who are excused from regular classroom activities for the study of instrumental music and students not studying instrumental music." (Kvet, p.45)
Kvet, Edward J. Excusing Elementary School Students from Regular Classroom Activities for the Study of Instrumental Music: The Effects on Sixth Grade Reading, Language, and Mathematics Achievement. Journal of Research in Music Education, Spring 1985, pp. 45-54.

60)Circle(1983), music supervisor of the Shawnee Mission School District, determined that test scores of the instrumental students were higher in both math and in reading. After comparing scores of participants and non-participants on the Iowa Test of Basic Skills, Circle believes that participation in the music program increases student's achievement.
Circle, David. 1989. Pulling Your Child for Music Lessons Does Not Hurt Grades. Available: [1999, July 7]

61)Holmes(1989) conducted a three-year comparison study of fifth grade participants' and non-participants' scores on the Comprehensive Test of Basic Skills. Holmes found that music students continually surpassed their non-participant peers in academic achievement.
Holmes, David Monroe. 1997. An Examination of Fifth Grade Instrumental Music Programs and Their Relationships With Music and Academic Achievement (Band). Dissertation from University of Washington.

62)Dryden(1992) studied fifth grade students' achievement on the Comprehensive Tests of Basic Skills in Kansas. When comparing students involved in a music pullout program to students not involved in the music pullout program, the results showed that "excusing elementary students from regular classroom activities does not negatively affect achievement in math or reading." (Dryden, p. 72)
Dryden, Susannah. 1992. The Impact of Instrumental Music Instruction on the Academic Achievement of Fifth Grade Students. (ERIC Document Reproduction Services No. ED 368 634).

63)Wallick (1995) compared Ohio Proficiency Test Results of fourth graders participating in a string pullout program to those of matched ability who were not participating in the music pullout program. The results favored string students' achievement in reading and in citizenship and there was no significant difference between the two groups in writing or math sections.
Wallick, Michael. 1995. A Comparison Study of the Ohio Proficiency Test Results Between Fourth-Grade Spring Pullout Students and Those of Matched Ability. Available: [1999, July 7]
Music Advocacy Quotations

Music Advocacy Quotations

1."During the Gulf War, the few opportunities I had for relaxation I always listened to music, and it brought me great peace of mind. I have shared my love of music with people throughout this world, while listening to the drums and special instruments of the Far East, Middle East, Africa, the Caribbean, and the Far North, and all this started with the music appreciation course that I was taught in a third grade elementary class in Princeton, New Jersey. What a tragedy it would be if we lived in a world where music was not taught to children."
-General Norman Schwarzkopf - United States Army

2."Music is exciting. It is thrilling to be sitting in a group of musicians playing (more or less) the same piece of music. You are part of a great, powerful, vibrant entity. And nothing beats the feeling you get when you've practice a difficult section over and over and finally get it right (yes, even on the wood block.) Music is important. It says things your heart can't say any other way, and in a language everyone speaks. Music crosses borders, turns smiles into frowns, and vice versa. These observations are shared with a hope: that, when schools cut back on music classes, they really think about what they're doing - and don't take music for granted."
-Dan Rather - CBS News

3."In every successful business.there is one budget line that never gets cut. It's called "Product Development" - and it's the key to any company's future growth. Music education is critical to the product development of this nation's most important resource - our children."
-John Sykes - President, VH1

4."The things I learned from my experience in music in school are discipline, perseverance, dependability, composure, courage, and pride in results.not a bad preparation for the workforce!"
-Gregory Anrig - President, Educational testing Service

5."Music is an essential part of everything we do. Like puppetry, music has an abstract quality which speaks to a worldwide audience in a wonderful way that nourishes the soul."
-Jim Henson - television producer and puppeteer

6."Should we not be putting all our emphasis on reading, writing, and math? The 'back-to-basics curricula,' while it has merit, ignores the most urgent void in our present system - absence of self-discipline. The arts, inspiring - indeed requiring - self-discipline, may be more 'basic' to our nation's survival than traditional credit courses. Presently, we are spending 29 times more on science than on the arts, and the result so far is worldwide intellectual embarrassment."
-Paul Harvey - syndicated radio show host

7."Its [music education] terribly important, extremely important - because when you are a child, you are in a receptive age.In high schools, public schools - that's were they must have the best influence, the first influence, which will go through their whole life."
-Eugene Ormandy - conductor of the Philadelphia Orchestra

8."It is our job, as parents, educators, and friends, to see that our young people have the opportunity to attain the thorough education that will prepare them for the future. Much of that education takes place in the classroom. We must encourage our youngsters in such pursuits as music education. In addition to learning the valuable lesson that it takes hard work to achieve success, no matter what the arena, music education can provide students with a strong sense of determination, improved communication skills, and a host of other qualities essential for successful living.
-Edward H. Rensi - President and Chief Operation Officer, U.S.A McDonald's Corporation

9."A grounding in the arts will help our children to see; to bring a uniquely human perspective to science and technology. In short, it will help them as they grow smarter to also grow wiser."
-Robert E. Allen - Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, AT&T Corporation

10."Some people think music education is a privilege, but I think it's essential to being human."
-Jewel - singer, songwriter, and instrumentalist

11."Music is about communication, creativity, and cooperation, and by studying music in school, students have the opportunity to build on these skills, enrich their lives, and experience the world from a new perspective."
-Bill Clinton, Former President of the United States of America

12."Perhaps we've all misunderstood the reason we learn music, and all the arts in the first place. It is not only so a student can learn the clarinet, or another student can take an acting lesson. It is that for hundreds of years it has been known that teaching the arts, along with history and math and biology, helps create the well-rounded mind that western-civilization, and America, have been grounded on."
-Richard Dreyfuss, actor

13."Music is a more potent instrument than any other for education, because rhythm and harmony find their way into the inward places of the soul."

14."Our society is committing cultural genocide. When the economy tightens and school budgets sink, programs in music and the other arts are most often the first to be cut back or even totally eliminated from the curriculum. This deprives children of a unique opportunity to develop their creativity, learn self-discipline and teamwork, and increase their sense of self-worth. It strikes me as being supremely ironic that today, we still have to try to make the case that music in indispensable if the term 'educated' is to mean anything."
-Michael Greene, President of the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences

15."I believe arts education in music, theater, dance, and the visual arts is one of the most creative ways we have to find the golf that is buried just beneath the surface. They [children] have an enthusiasm for life, a spark of creativity, and vivid imaginations that need that prepares them to become confident young men and women."
-Richard W. Riley, Former US Secretary of Education

16."The arts are an essential element of education, just like reading, writing, and, dance, painting, and theater are all keys that unlock profound human understanding and accomplishment."
-William Bennett, Former US Secretary of Education

17."I have a premonition that one day we will soon wake the realization that stripping instrumental music from our elementary schools was a true blunder of twentieth century American education."
-James S. Catterall, professor of education, UCLA

18."Whoever has skill in music is of good temperament and fitted for all things. We must teach music in schools."
-Martin Luther, Table-Talk, 1566

19."Music education opens doors that help children pass from school into the world around them - a world of work, culture, intellectual activity, and human involvement. The future of our nation depends on providing our children with a complete education that includes music."
-Gerald Ford, former President of the Unites States

Mikesell Music
- Developing talent in Carlisle for over 20 years