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Music and temporary dispositionFeatured science projectScience project video


The materials required for this science fair project:

-    30 participants, each 12 years old
-    A cheerful, happy music CD (e.g. upbeat children’s songs)
-    A somber music CD (e.g. opera music)
-    A heavy-metal music CD
-    A CD player
-    A classroom
-    Tables and chairs


1.    For this science fair project, the independent variable is the type of music played in the background. The dependent variable is the temporary disposition of the participants. This is determined by having them each complete a survey form. The constants (control variables) are the number of questions asked and the length of time the music is played.

2.    Prepare a survey form to help evaluate the emotions, moods and temporary dispositions of the participants. An example of the survey form is shown above. There are also commercially available surveys which can be acquired for the purposees of this experiment. Make 30 copies of the form.
3.    Separate the participants into 3 groups of 10 persons each. Bring only one group into the classroom at a time. When the 1st group enters the classroom, play the cheerful music in the background for 1 hour before having them fill up the survey form. Play the somber music for the 2nd group and the violent music for the 3rd group.
4.    After each group of participants has completed the survey form, collect the forms and total the points for each participant. Separate them into the following categories: Happy (24 to 30 points), Somber (17 to 23 points) and Violent (10 to 16 points). Record your results in a table, as shown below.

Temporary disposition survey Group : 1 / 2 / 3 Total points :
Name Age Gender Select one of the following emotions
No. Condition 1 Point 2 Points 3 Points
1 Normal state Angry Moody Happy
2 Something is lost or misplaced Frustrated Anxious Relaxed
3 Getting scolded Angry Hopeless Relaxed
4 Receiving a gift Excited Calm Happy
5 Failure to complete a task Frustrated Hopeless Willing to try again
6 Successful in completing a task Excited Calm Happy
7 Receiving praise Excited Calm Happy
8 Being cheated Angry Somber Relaxed
9 Winning a contest Excited Calm Happy
10 Scoring top grades Excited Calm Happy


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Time required:
1 day for preparation, 1 day for observation
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