Date of Conferral







Thomas Edman


Correlations between music training and psychosocial skills, sensory abilities, and aspects of intelligence, are sorted into primary or secondary effects. Correlations between these areas of human development and music training lack support pertaining to the underlying cognitive networks that these processes rely on. Thus, this study was based on the work of Baddeley and Hitch's model of working memory, and implemented a test of parallel processing (Articulatory Suppression Task, AST), which measures proficiency of working memory systems. Individual differences therein, were compared with music aptitude. Participants were gathered throughout urban and rural regions of the state of Oregon. Half the participants received specific training on how to excel on AST, the other half received no training. The training was based on research showing musicians to be more proficient in rhythm, the phonological loop, and mental imagery. Group AST pretest/posttest scores and the Drake Musical Aptitude test scores were analyzed using 2-tailed t test and regression models for within-group and between-group variation. No significant difference between musical aptitude and participant ability to increase proficiency with parallel processing was found, however, the results indicated that music training influences proficiency with parallel processing in general, and there were indicators that a ceiling effect may have confounded the pretest-posttest range in scores. This supports findings of previous research that musical training has beneficial influences on mathematics, socio-emotional awareness, motor skills, language, and general intelligence, highlighting that positive social change may result if music were a core class in K-12 education.