The Instigator
Addison98
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
PericIes
Con (against)
Winning
3 Points

Playing an instrument increases your intelligence

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 1 vote the winner is...
PericIes
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 7/20/2015 Category: People
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 588 times Debate No: 77913
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (0)
Votes (1)

 

Addison98

Pro

I am on the pro side that if you play an instrument then you are more capable of learning new things like Math, Science, English, etc. than if you did not play an instrument.

This round will be for accepting the debate.
PericIes

Con

I accept. Needless to say, burden of proof is on my opponent to prove that playing a instrument makes one more intelligent than if they did not play one.
Also, by "play" I do not mean "make random sounds with it." Someone who plays an instrument has learned how to make music with that instrument. Not avant-garde stuff either, as that is, again, just random noises.
Debate Round No. 1
Addison98

Pro

Thank you for accepting the debate.
And yes, by "play" I too do not mean "make random sounds with it."

Executive Function Definition: A high-level cognitive processes that enable people to quickly process and retain information, regulate their behaviors, make good choices, solve problems, plan and adjust to changing mental demands.

Many studies have been done on this specific topic. For example, Boston's Children Hospital has found that through musical training, adult's and kid's EF(Executive Function) has improved. To prove this isn't a coincidence, neuroscientists used MRI brain imaging to find the connection between musical training and EF improvement.
A study was done where multiple adults and kids that played an instrument and that didn't play an instrument were tested. The ones that do play instruments showed better results on cognitive flexibility, working memory, and verbal fluency.

An interesting case of this "musical intelligence booster" is Albert Einstein. Many believe him to be the most intelligent man that ever lived. There have been numerous studies on why his brain was so much smarter and more capable than the average brain. From the age of 6, Einstein played violin. Often, when he couldn't solve a problem, he would play the violin and the answer would come to him as he lost himself in his music. Now that proves nothing. However, after Einstein died, scientists dissected his brain and found that his cerebral cortex is uniquely developed. And a big part of why he is so smart is because of the way his cerebral cortex was developed. And the reason his cerebral cortex is the way it is is because he played violin.

In closing, playing an instrument has been shown to improve the ability to integrate sensory information from hearing, touch, and sight. Also, brain circuits involved in musical improvisation are shaped by systematic training, leading to less reliance on working memory and more extensive connectivity within the brain. As you learn an instrument, MRIs show that your cerebrum develops which improves your EF.

You can give your rebuttals and make new arguments.
PericIes

Con

I'd like to wish my opponent good luck, and I hope that he lives long and prospers.

Burden of proof, as aforesaid, is on my opponent, so I only need to refute his points in order to win the debate.

It seems as though my opponent's argument is broken down into two points, followed by a summary of the points.

The first point seems to be "studies have corroborated my position."

The second point seems to be "Albert Einstein was very intelligent and played the violin."

Addressing the first point, I'd be interested if my opponent could post links to the studies that he mentioned. No links were posted, but allusions were made, so if he could provide access to the studies I might be able to properly discuss and/or refute their findings. as for studies in general, I was able to find plenty that gave the exact opposite conclusion that my opponent's alleged studies did. I'll post links to a few of them at the bottom of this section of the debate, but one good example was a study conducted by researchers at the University of Toronto, which found no correlation between musical ability and intelligence in children. (1)

Addressing the second point, I don't find it relevant. Albert Einstein was one man. He is not representative of the population as a whole, and for every genius that could play a musical instrument, I can find you one or more that didn't. His violin skills are not a cause of genius. If anything, they are an effect of genius. This leads to something that I think is important. You're looking at smart people who play musical instruments well and saying "they must be smarter because of the instruments." Actually, you have it backwards. They're good at music because they're smarter, not the other way around.

The examples, as promised:

1- http://www.zmescience.com...
2- http://healthland.time.com...
3- https://www.bostonglobe.com...
4- http://www.boston.com...
5- http://www.smithsonianmag.com...
Debate Round No. 2
Addison98

Pro

My apologies, I completely forgot to provide links to my sources. I usually wait until the bottom of my side of the debate but this time it slipped my mind. I'll post the links to my previous round at the bottom of the page, along with the links to my sources in this round.

As you made only rebuttals that round, I will have only contentions in this round.

Contentions:

1. Research continually shows that playing an instrument increases your brain functions. Maybe not by a lot, but it does increase it.
"New research suggests that regularly playing an instrument changes the shape and power of the brain and may be used in therapy to improve cognitive skills. These parts of the brain that control motor skills, hearing, storing audio information and memory become larger and more active when a person learns how to play an instrument and can apparently improve day to day actions such as being alert, planning and emotional perception. Lutz J"ncke, a psychologist at the University of Zurich, said: "Learning to play a musical instrument has definite benefits and can increase IQ by seven points, in both children and adults. Mr J"ncke also said that music can also make it easier to learn foreign languages and become more perceptive in interpreting the emotions of others. "

2. Learning an instrument increases your coordination.
By reading musical notes on a page, your brain subconsciously convert that note into specific motor patterns while also adding breathing rhythm to the mix.

3. Improves your reading and comprehensive skills.
"Children exposed to a multi-year programme of music tuition involving training in increasingly complex rhythmic, tonal, and practical skills display superior cognitive performance in reading skills compared with their non-musically trained peers, according to a study published in the journal Psychology of Music."

4. Just listening to music can improve your intelligence.
"When Gordon Shaw and Frances Rauscher published the results of their study on the relationship between music and spatial task performance in 1993, the "Mozart effect" became a popular term. It referred to the study"s findings that ten minutes of listening to Mozart can boost one"s spatial-temporal intelligence."

Conclusion:
You say that being able to play an instrument is a result of genius. However, many studies have proven otherwise. Some studies even show that just listening to certain types of music increase certain brain functions.
Round 2 sources:

https://www.psychologytoday.com...

http://journals.plos.org...

http://www.nature.com...

https://www.psychologytoday.com...

Round 3 sources:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk...

http://www.sciencedaily.com...

http://brainconnection.brainhq.com...
PericIes

Con

I would like to restate that, because the burden of proof is on my opponent, I only need to refute his points in order to win the debate.

Addressing your first point: You are stating that studies have corroborated your hypothesis and gave an example of one. That's all well and good, but I have plenty of studies that corroborate my hypothesis (I'll post more examples below), and I gave an example of one as well. This means that neither of us has the edge here, and since burden of proof is on you, and I only need to keep you from being proven to be correct, I believe that I come out on top in this area.

Addressing your second point: Irrelevant. Coordination is not intelligence.

Addressing your third point: Irrelevant. Reading quickly isn't intelligence either. Plenty of people read rather slowly. It does not make them less intelligent. Granted, people who read quickly are rarely unintelligent, but again, slow reading does not necessarily denote inferior intelligence.

Addressing your fourth point: The Mozart Effect applies to only one kind of music (classical, particularly Mozart's), applies to listening, though not necessarily playing (meaning that the music one makes while playing music, not the playing itself, causes the effect), and only effects visual-spacial reasoning. Additionally, it's only temporary, often only lasting a few minutes. (1)

Addressing the conclusion: Studies have proven that people never play music well as the result of genius? I would like to see the evidence for this.

1- http://lrs.ed.uiuc.edu...

More examples that corroborate my hypothesis:

2- http://www.newser.com...
3- http://www.telegraph.co.uk...
4- https://www.psychologytoday.com...
5- http://www.experienceproject.com...
Debate Round No. 3
Addison98

Pro

Burden of proof is on you too. By taking the con side of the argument, you must proof that playing an instrument doesn't increase your intelligence. You can't simply disprove my hypothesis. Which results in you also having the burden of proof.

For every link I post, you seem to have 4-5 that refute my claim. You seem to believe you have leverage on this debate because you are posting more links than I am. However, I could post 5, 10, even 15 links if I wanted to. But I see no reason to as the few links I provide are sufficient to support my hypothesis.

Conclusion:
It seems as though we are both going to keep giving studies that corroborate our hypothesis. We may even throw in a few side notes here and rebuttals here and then to help us out. Yet, it seems neither of us are actually proving everything.
For every link I give that supports my hypothesis, you have one that knocks it down.
But it works the same on the flip side.
For ever link you give that supports your hypothesis, I have one that knocks it down.

It seems to me you think having more links gives you edge. So here are many, many links supporting my hypothesis:

1- http://www.wwbw.com...
2- http://journals.plos.org...
3- http://www.jneurosci.org...
4- http://www.mms-us.com...
5- http://www.livescience.com...
6- http://ed.ted.com...
7- http://commonhealth.wbur.org...
8- http://www.nature.com...
9- http://www.worldmag.com...
10- http://www.musicianbrain.com...
11- http://www.musicianbrain.com...
12- http://www.musicianbrain.com...
13- http://www.erin.utoronto.ca...
14- http://pss.sagepub.com...
15- http://phys.org...
16- http://brainblogger.com...
17- http://www.hasdk12.org...
18- http://www.wwbw.com...
19- http://newslite.tv...
20- http://www.pbs.org...
PericIes

Con

Burden of proof is most definitely not on me. You are making a claim that something is the case. I only need to prove that there is not sufficient evidence to take the idea that you are claiming to be true as truth. I have nothing that I'm trying to instate as scientific law. You do. The Flying Spaghetti Monster, any religious/lack thereof connotations aside, is a great statement about this. (1) One may be claiming that there is an invisible, flying spaghetti monster in the room, and another person may be arguing that there is not sufficient evidence to support this claim, but if neither side can *absolutely* win the argument, the person arguing against the existence of the monster wins. This also is supported by the "innocent until proven guilty" mentality, and, also, science.

"For every link I post, you seem to have 4-5 that refute my claim." So?

"You seem to believe you have leverage on this debate because you are posting more links than I am." From whence are you drawing this conclusion?

"But I see no reason to as the few links I provide are sufficient to support my hypothesis." You posted 20 links on this round alone.

"It seems as though we are both going to keep giving studies that corroborate our hypothesis. We may even throw in a few side notes here and rebuttals here and then to help us out. Yet, it seems neither of us are actually proving everything.
For every link I give that supports my hypothesis, you have one that knocks it down.
But it works the same on the flip side." That's exactly what I said. Remember? Here's the quote: "You are stating that studies have corroborated your hypothesis and gave an example of one. That's all well and good, but I have plenty of studies that corroborate my hypothesis (I'll post more examples below), and I gave an example of one as well. This means that neither of us has the edge here, and since burden of proof is on you, and I only need to keep you from being proven to be correct, I believe that I come out on top in this area." So, thank you for supporting my side. Much appreciated.

I'd also like to point out that you didn't actually argue for your point during this round. You just claimed that I have the burden of proof as well (which I don't), that I am posting too many sources (which I wasn't), that neither of us has the edge in sources, and then you proceeded to post 20 sources.

1- https://en.wikipedia.org...

More examples:

2- http://testtube.com...
3- https://answers.yahoo.com...;
4- http://www.nytimes.com...;
Debate Round No. 4
Addison98

Pro

Rebuttals:

1:
"You are stating that studies have corroborated your hypothesis and gave an example of one. That's all well and good, but I have plenty of studies that corroborate my hypothesis (I'll post more examples below), and I gave an example of one as well." "So?" "So?" In one of the previous rounds, you said you have many studies that corrobrate your hypothesis. You're contradicting yourself.

2:
"He is not representative of the population as a whole, and for every genius that could play a musical instrument, I can find you one or more that didn't. "
" as for studies in general, I was able to find plenty that gave the exact opposite conclusion that my opponent's alleged studies did."
I draw my conlcusion through what you said.

3:
I said, "It seems to me you think having more links gives you edge. So here are many, many links supporting my hypothesis:" I only posted those links because you seemed to think having many links and many studies help backup your claim.

4:
You claim I haven't proven my side of the claim. However, I given many studies that prove otherwise. Why are your studies more authentic than mine? I show studies that say playing an instrument improves your intelligence. Whereas you show studies that prove otherwise. So why are your studies the ones that are right?

So far, I have proven my hypothesis to be true through:
  • Finding studies corroborate my hypothesis.
  • Finding real test subjects that have an increase in intelligence as they learn an instrument.
  • Providing many reliable sources.
  • Explaining every thing I'm saying.


What more is there to prove? You said in the last round, "I'd also like to point out that you didn't actually argue for your point during this round."
I didn't argue my point in the previous round because there is nothing left to argue. I proved my side.

PericIes

Con

1- I'm not contradicting myself at all. If you might take a gander at those statement when they're NOT taken out of context, you will notice that the reason that I have many studies that corroborate my hypothesis is to show that we are even on that particular playing field. I... don't even know for sure what you're talking about here. And the "so?" was from something completely different.

2- You are aware that the conclusion in question is "You seem to believe you have leverage on this debate because you are posting more links than I am," yes? Again, stop taking things out of context. I mean, even NOT taken out of context, I fail to see how my pointing out of the existence of supporting studies makes me claim that I am granted leverage on the debate by posting MORE of them.

3- No, I did not seem to think that. What you are trying to pull off here is called a straw man argument. It is a fallacy. (1)

4- "You claim I haven't proven my side of the claim." That's obvious. The fact that I'm on the opposing side of the debate says that in and of itself.
"Why are your studies more authentic than mine?" I never claimed that they were, and I even implied that they weren't when I suggested that we were evenly matched in terms of studies. Stop with the straw man arguments.

"Finding studies corroborate my hypothesis." I did that too.
"Finding real test subjects that have an increase in intelligence as they learn an instrument." That goes with the studies, and I found subjects that didn't have increases in intelligence.
"Providing many reliable sources." Again with the studies/sources. You're very fixated on this subject aren't you?
"Explaining every thing I'm saying." I did that as well.

I fail to see how any of the above four things that you cited as reaasons for your "proven" claim actually prove your claim.

"I didn't argue my point in the previous round because there is nothing left to argue." So you basically forfeited the round. And this round, really.

This debate seems to have turned into something totally different than what it was supposed to be, so thanks for that.

1- https://yourlogicalfallacyis.com...

Oh, right, and this is for your whole "burden of proof is on you, too" spiel.
2- https://yourlogicalfallacyis.com...

Debate Round No. 5
No comments have been posted on this debate.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by bballcrook21 1 year ago
bballcrook21
Addison98PericIesTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: As I read and analyzed this debate, I saw a hinted tone change with Pro. I admit and understand that it is rather difficult to conceal or even extrapolate a tone, since you cannot put verbal emphasis on language when you are writing. I did, through the process of reading, pick up on some writing that could be considered rude. In all honesty, I cannot award a point for conduct to either side because I did not quite perceive any tone or statements as insulting or condescending, as I, once again, understand that it is not easy to write without a certain tone. For the argument, I would have to side with Con. I found Con's argument to be more articulate and more argumentative, which is the basis for this debate. Additionally, Pro wasted an entire round on just talking about sources. Overall, quite an interesting debate.