ERIC Number: EJ929760
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Jul
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
Constraints on Infants' Musical Rhythm Perception: Effects of Interval Ratio Complexity and Enculturation
Hannon, Erin E.; Soley, Gaye; Levine, Rachel S.
Developmental Science, v14 n4 p865-872 Jul 2011
Effects of culture-specific experience on musical rhythm perception are evident by 12 months of age, but the role of culture-general rhythm processing constraints during early infancy has not been explored. Using a habituation procedure with 5- and 7-month-old infants, we investigated effects of temporal interval ratio complexity on discrimination of standard from novel musical patterns containing 200-ms disruptions. Infants were tested in three ratio conditions: simple (2:1), which is typical in Western music, complex (3:2), which is typical in other musical cultures, and highly complex (7:4), which is relatively rare in music throughout the world. Unlike adults and older infants, whose accuracy was predicted by familiarity, younger infants were influenced by ratio complexity, as shown by their successful discrimination in the simple and complex conditions but not in the highly complex condition. The findings suggest that ratio complexity constrains rhythm perception even prior to the acquisition of culture-specific biases.
Descriptors: Music Education, Intervals, Music, Familiarity, Infants, Habituation, Age Differences, Testing, Cognitive Processes
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Early Childhood Education
Authoring Institution: N/A