Musikalischer g-Faktor oder multiple Faktoren? Struktur und Leistungskennwerte der musikalischen Hörfähigkeit von Jugendlichen
Musical g Factor or Multiple Factors? Structure and Norms of Musical Ability of Adolescents

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Viola Pausch
Daniel Müllensiefen
Reinhard Kopiez


The structure of musical abilities has not yet been clearly identified. The present study investigates whether musicality is best modelled as a collection of several independent musicalities, analogous to Gardner's concept of multiple intelligences, or as one general musicality factor, analogous to Spearman's general “g” factor of intelligence. As part of the LongGold study, we measured musicality using tests of beat and intonation perception as well as melodic and emotional discrimination in a sample of adolescents (N = 1786, age range: 8–18 years, M = 11,78, SD = 1,68) from Germany and the United Kingdom. Overall, test scores correlated with medium to high effect sizes. The comparison of several latent variable models and a confirmatory factor analysis suggested that probably, a model similar to the general g-factor model of intelligence also applies to musical listening ability conceptualized as a single-factor model. Norm values are provided for the individual musicality tests differentiated according to age, gender, and the extent of musical training.

musical ability; musicality; Gold-MSI questionnaire; adolescents; empirical norms

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