Is There Really A Mozart Effect?

Some scientists claim there isn’t; tests show no effect. Well, that doesn’t prove something doesn’t exist. It might only prove you designed a crappy experiment.

Plenty of robust studies show there is indeed an effect and it’s a very good one.

The “Mozart Effect”, if you don’t know, is the supposition that playing nice music, with the right frequencies buried in it, is very stimulating to a child’s brain and can enhance growth and learning. Seems almost common sense, doesn’t it. Not to some people!

I’m looking at a copy of the book by Don Campbell. Per the usual American hubris (conceit), he states that all this was given impetus and cred by researches of Frances H Rauscher PhD, at Center for Neurobiology of Learning in Irvine, California.

These Americans are often decades behind the rest of us and believe they invented everything. Or if they didn’t, then it’s not worth knowing anyway.

The truth is all this was discovered starting in the 1950s in France, with the work of Alfred Tomatis MD. He’s been called the Einstein of Sound and the Sherlock Holmes of sonic detection. Tomatis was the developer of the “electronic ear” concept.

His biggest discovery was not the Mozart Effect but a physiological curiosity, which is that the voice does not contain frequencies which the ear cannot hear. If the ear does not pick up the sound, that sound will be missing from the quality of the voice. Continue reading

Was Cyril Burt Correct After All?

Sir Cyril Lodowic Burt (3 March 1883 – 10 October 1971) was an English educational psychologist who made contributions to educational psychology and statistics.

Burt is known for his studies on the heritability of IQ and his theories that the “best people” gave rise to the “best” children (cleverest). He created a storm

Remember this was in the days of sniveling socialism, when everybody HAD to equal everybody else and it was not PC to even suggest people from poorer families might not actually be that smart.

In 1942, Burt was elected President of the British Psychological Society and in 1946 became the first British psychologist to be knighted for his contributions to psychological testing and, ironically, for making educational opportunities more widely available, despite his critics.

Shortly after he died, his studies of inheritance and intelligence came into disrepute after evidence supposedly emerged indicating he had falsified research data. Some scholars have asserted that Burt did not commit intentional fraud.

More importantly, modern science is starting to back what he said. There was no fraud by Burt; only his critics lied and deliberately tarnished his reputation.

New research indicates that Burt was in fact correct. Up to half of human intelligence can be explained by genetics. There isn’t some big “smart gene” but it relies on the expression of quite a number of genes.

We needn’t go into the biology here. The point is that the smart set really are likely to have smart kids and this truth matters more than socialist agendas.

The researchers found that approximately half of individual differences in intelligence can be explained by genetics and across a great variety of genes. In fact, as the lead researcher explained, this is likely to be an UNDER-estimate, since they could only detect variation that is correlated with common DNA markers.

[SOURCE: Aug. 12, 2011, Molecular Psychiatry]