Music and Books that Increase SAT Scores

According to 25-year-old Caltech graduate, Virgil Griffith, an affinity for Kelly Clarkson will result in a low SAT score. Griffith recently collected statistics showing that certain music tastes affect intellect.

For example, the favorite musician of the smartest students was Beethoven, with an average SAT score of 1371. Also on the “smart” end of the scale were Sufjan Stevens (1260), Counting Crows (1247), and Radiohead (1220). And sadly for Lil Wayne, enjoying his music was associated with being the dumbest, with an average SAT score of 889.

What does this say for people like me who fit on both ends of the spectrum? I love the Counting Crows, Ben Folds, and The Beatles, all bands that produce music that supposedly increases SAT scores, but I also enjoy upbeat music that apparently makes everyone dumber. Artists like Lil Wayne and Kelly Clarkson create fun, high energy songs perfect for parties and working out. The same can be said for The Beatles, but they’ve definitely made more depressing songs that can easily bring down the mood of an entire room.

Then there’s the book data:

On the book front, Lolita was favorite tome of the brightest students (a result which Griffith called “charming”), with an average SAT score of 1317. The lowest-scoring students liked the erotica author Zane, with an average score of 980. And strangely, the students who listed their favorite book as “The Bible” were smarter (1047) than those who said it was “The Holy Bible” (980).

Lolita is one of my favorite books, and I’ll agree that the Holy Bible isn’t the most literary of works, hence I recently ranted about studying the Bible in my Women and Literature class, and I’m glad this statistic stays true to my complaint. The last sentence in the paragraph above seems to take a stab at religious test-takers, but this is just my humble opinion.

Overall, the controversial data doesn’t seem completely far off, but studies have shown that happy, fast-paced music makes people, well, happier, and it doesn’t mean they’re stupid.


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