Music and GPA: Correlation?

Written by Ashley Lyon and Mei Bailey and Becky Phillips

The researchers in this study aim to discover whether a correlation exists between a student’s preferred music genre and their GPA. The purpose in identifying this correlation is to discover whether a disposition for a certain style of music predicts academic success. The essential research question is “Is there a correlation between a student’s preferred musical genre and the student’s GPA?” We plan on using the survey method and asking students to self-report their preferred genre of music from a given list of genres. A randomized sample, selected using a random number generator and a numbered list of students at Pacific Grove High School, will be called into a classroom during lunchtime and given a survey in which they will indicate their preferred genre from a list (genres include Rap/Hip-Hop, R&B/Soul, Club/EDM, Pop, Classical, Folk, Rock, Alternative, Metal, Reggae, Jazz, Country, Musical Theatre, and Singer-Songwriter) and their current GPA. Once the data is collected, researchers will calculate the mean GPA for each genre to determine whether a relationship exists between GPA and music taste.


Based on the responses to our survey, we found that the highest average GPA in respondents was correlated with a preference for Musical Theatre style music at a GPA of 3.7. On the low end, Metal was found to have the lowest average at 2.0. Based on our survey, the median GPA was associated with a preference for Rap and Hip-Hop, and because Rap and Hip-Hop also reported the highest number of respondents, it can be inferred that the average person at Pacific Grove High School has a preference for Rap and Hip-Hop music.