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The influence of sensorial abilities and cognitive functions in accuracy of vocal reproduction on musicians

Grant number: 22/08369-2
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): November 01, 2022
Effective date (End): October 31, 2023
Field of knowledge:Health Sciences - Speech Therapy
Principal Investigator:Caroline Nunes Rocha-Muniz
Grantee:Vitória Beraldo Pinheiro
Host Institution: Faculdade de Ciências Médicas da Santa Casa de São Paulo (FCMSCSP). Fundação Arnaldo Vieira de Carvalho. São Paulo , SP, Brazil


One of the most important aspects of singing is the control of fundamental frequency. In addition to motor controls, one of the factors that may influence the ability to vocally reproduce an acoustic model refers to the need to recognize a sound, know how to differentiate it, store it and, finally, reproduce it vocally. Thus, it is necessary peripheral and central auditory systems integrity function. However, despite some studies about auditory processing and pitch accuracy, there is no consensus on the mechanisms that underlie the vocal reproduction capacity of an acoustic model. Given these factors, this study aims to investigate the influence of the cognitive functions of memory and sustained attention (auditory modality) and of the sensorial abilities involved in auditory temporal processing on the accuracy of vocal reproduction (related to pitch-matching ability) in musicians and non-musicians. 30 normal young adults will participate in the study: 15 musicians and 15 non-musicians. All subjects will be assessed in cognitive mechanisms (sustained attention and working memory) and sensory ability of auditory processing (frequency pattern test, Gaps in Noise Test) and the pitch-matching test (ability to vocally produce a frequency). The analysis of the results will be made from the comparison of the studied variables between the groups and the intra-group correlation between the performance in the evaluated tests. In addition, we will verify if assertiveness for vocal reproduction was influenced by performance in attention, memory, TPF and GIN tests. Our hypothesis is that both skills related to higher cognitive functions (such as sustained attention and working memory) and auditory sensory skills (such as temporal auditory processing) are associated with vocal pitch.

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