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MU3050: MUSIC AND THE BRAIN (2018-2019)

Last modified: 22 May 2019 17:07

Course Overview

This course is designed to enable students to understand and critically evaluate the factors involved in music perception and music performance from a neuroscientific perspective. 

Course Details

Study Type Undergraduate Level 3
Session First Sub Session Credit Points 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits)
Campus Old Aberdeen Sustained Study No
  • Dr Frauke Jurgensen

What courses & programmes must have been taken before this course?

  • Any Undergraduate Programme (Studied)
  • Either Music (MU) (Studied) or Psychology (PS) (Studied)
  • Either Programme Level 3 or Programme Level 4

What other courses must be taken with this course?


What courses cannot be taken with this course?


Are there a limited number of places available?


Course Description

Course Content

  • Phylogenetic and onto-genetic development of music

  • Perception of music and computation of musical meaning

  • The role of motor control in music performance

  • Acquisition of music performance skills in terms of hand movement or voice control and mental practice

  • Musician's cramp: the loss of motor control in musicians

  • The peculiarities of the musician's brain as a window into neural plasticity brought about by extensive training

Main Learning Outcomes

Students will be able to:

  • demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the basic concept of music perception;
  • identify key questions in experimental psychology, particularly, in music cognition;
  • display awareness of the relationships between psychoacoustics, musical phenomena, and musical practice;
  • examine the correlation between musical performance skills and mental practice;
  • understand the process of experimental design in psychoacoustic research.

Contact Teaching Time

Information on contact teaching time is available from the course guide.

Teaching Breakdown

More Information about Week Numbers

Details, including assessments, may be subject to change until 31 August 2023 for 1st half-session courses and 22 December 2023 for 2nd half-session courses.

Summative Assessments

1st Attempt

100% continuous assessment:
- The first tutorial report (20%)
- The second tutorial report (20%)
- The final essay (60%)


Students need to rework and resubmit failed assignments.

Formative Assessment

Students will be assessed formatively throughout the course by means of 3 in-course assignments, two tutorial reports and a final essay.


Students will be provided with qualitative feedback during the tutorials, as well as in the revision workshop.

Course Learning Outcomes


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