The Relationship between Math and Music

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Mathematics refers to numbers and calculations, often dealing with magnitudes, figures and quantities expressed symbolically. On the other hand, music is an art of sound through the use of harmonies, rhythm and melodies. Although these two subjects are in contrast to each other, as mathematics is often unpopular to most people for its difficulty and music is easily likeable for its pleasantness, experts have uncovered a strong connection between the two topics.

The connection between mathematics and music is held through the concepts of numbers, patterns, and ratios. Through these mathematical concepts, many music theories were developed. Great mathematicians like Pythagoras, also a renowned music lover, applied mathematics to expand his ideas on music theory. Similarly, famous musicians like Boethius used mathematical concepts to express his musical ideas. These people used mathematical concepts to understand music, and somehow music also helped them to accomplish great things in the field of mathematics.

Music helps enhance one’s mathematical skills by training the brain to think critically and analytically, developing one’s sequential and rhythmic skills, and stimulating the use of spatial reasoning, all of which are useful in solving mathematics. This music theory became famous when study on the Mozart Effect was developed in the late 1950s. Mozart effect is a theory in which one can improve his intellectual performance by listening to Mozart’s compositions. This theory led researchers to study further the correlation between mathematics and music and to prove whether this relationship exists or not.

A. Statement of the Problem

This paper aims to answer the following questions:
(1) What are the theories on the relationship between mathematics and music? (2) What are the mathematical concepts used develop musical theories? (3) What are the proofs that music helps enhance one’s mathematical skills?

B. Significance of the Study

This research will be able to aid those students who need help with their studies, not only in mathematics, but also in other subjects as this research will demonstrate how a student may be able to improve his skills in all kinds of aspects. This research will help them develop their sequential skills, spatial reasoning, and critical thinking.

From this research, parents will have the knowledge on how to assist their children on their studies. This research will provide numerous statistics that will show how music aids a child’s learning ability, and will prove this not only with conjectures, but with concrete proof. In the end of this research, a survey will be given to a class of 21 students to support this study.

It is of utmost importance that every child is to be given the best education he can have and that is why this research is conducted to let people be aware of the benefits that listening to music can give, some of which are aforementioned.


A. The Relationship between Music and Math

Math and music easily relate to each other. In the field of math, there are many different basic concepts that can be easily applied to music. These are:

(1) Numerical Operators
Numerical operators are about understanding and comparing numbers, and in relation to music, we count the beats inside a rhythmic pattern, and compare the beats in different kinds of measures (4/4, 3/4, 2/4).

(2) Geometry
Geometry is all about shapes and spatial understanding an in music, we can compare this to organizing notes of which are higher or lower, passing through or inside the bars, and many more.

(3) Measurement
Measurements are used immensely in music. Using system of measurements, we learn how to compare the tonality of each note, the pace of every rhythm, and the remaining beats left to complete a measure of ¾.

There are many theories in both fields of Math and Music that have a close connection to each other....
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