Music ‘s ability to enhance personal well-being is to be explored by researchers at NUI Galway and the university is looking for volunteers for the project.
Jenny Groarke, a musician and PhD student at NUIG’s School of Psychology, is seeking participants aged 18 to 30 and 60 to 85 years to join focus group sessions. Volunteers will spend two/three hours in small groups discussing the reasons they listen to music, and then vote for what they believe is most beneficial for well-being.
Emerging evidence suggests that people listen to music for a wide range of reasons, but their reasons for listening are primarily emotional, but Ms Groarke says that through the volunteer groups, she hopes “to understand how we can use listening to music to improve well-being”.
She added: “Music has long been known to give rise to positive feelings, memories and emotions. People of all ages listen to music to cope with the stresses of everyday life, they listen to music to connect with others in social situations, and those who are isolated say they often listen to music to reduce feelings of loneliness.”