Sunday, November 29, 2009

Singing and Aphasia

I found this article very interesting. It discussed how certain people suffering from aphasia are able to sing songs that are familiar to them, and how music can help in aphasia recovery. There were three experiments performed. In experiment one, each subject was asked to complete the words to familiar songs which they identified as having heard before prior to the experiment, both with and without the melodies. In experiment two, each subject listened to twenty unfamiliar songs with randomly assigned syntactic phrases and the subjects were asked to repeat the phrases with and without the melodies. In the third experiment, each subject listened to a simple melody. The melody was the combined with 32 excerpts from the unfamiliar songs in experiment two, then the excerpts were asked to be sung and spoken.


Experiment One:
The subject was able to recall 58.8% of the words while singing, and 30.5% of the words while speaking.

Experiment Two:
The subject was able to recall 8.3% of the words correctly with the melody, and 20% of the words without the melody.

Experiment Three:
The subject was able to recall the melody with 100% accuracy after hearing it played the first time. However, the subject was unable to recall any of the words with the melody, and while speaking the subject could produce 20% of the words.

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