Welcome to MECCA!

The project investigates the effects of learning a music instrument on emotional and cognitive behaviours. Within the two legs of the project it will be examined to what extent playing music might contribute to reductions of emotional vulnerability, improvements of emotional self-regulation as well as improvements of cognitive performance (attention, memory). The project is based on a control-group design using repeated measures. 250 children in the intervention group will be compared to 250 children in the control group.
Dependent variables are psychometrically: stress and stress regulation, attention and memory performance; behaviourally/ physiologically: saliva cortisol concentrations under rest and stress conditions, cardiovascular parameters before, during and after an emotional stress condition; clinically: problematic behaviours, medical diagnoses and medical prescriptions.

Psychometric measures will be collected at four instances each at the beginning of school semesters. The behavioural/ physiological measures will be collected at the first and last instance. Subgroups of 60 children from intervention and control groups will be submitted to cardiovascular measurements and individual psychometric testing. The project will address hypotheses derived from the music cognition literature as well as explore the emotional effects of instrumental tuition in primary school children.