Stay up to date with notifications from The Independent

Notifications can be managed in browser preferences.

Classical music and studying: The top 10 pieces to listen to for exam success

Classic FM reveals which pieces of classical music will help students get the most out of their revision

Aftab Ali
Student Editor
Thursday 19 May 2016 13:58 BST
(Getty Images)

Recent research from academics in the US and France has found that listening to classical music while studying can actually help students score higher in their assessments.

With exam season well underway here in the UK, we want to give students a helping hand wherever we can, particularly after new figures released by ChildLine showed a concerning rise in the number of young people seeking help for stress.

Therefore, to help combat stress levels, the team at Classic FM has revealed a list of the top pieces of classical music to help students get the most out of their revision.

From relaxing melodies for starting the process to pace-quickeners for those last-minute cramming moments, classical music can both calm students down and make them more receptive to new information.

Classic FM presenter, Bill Turnbull, has shared his experiences of listening to classical music while studying. He said: “When I was revising for exams, it wasn’t unheard of for me to lose concentration, but listening to classical music was a really simple and effective way to stay focused and keep my nerves under control.

“Last year, thousands of students tuned into Classic FM to help them get through the busy revision and exam period so, this year, we have created a list of the most relaxing, inspirational, and motivational pieces to help them keep their eyes on the ball.”

So, taking into consideration the presenter’s words of wisdom, turn down the Beyoncé, and turn up the Bach - here’s a countdown of the top ten classical tracks which could set you on the road to exam success:

10) Piano Concerto No. 23 – Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

9) The Hours – Philip Glass

8) Gymnopedie No. 1 – Erik Satie

7) Clair De Lune – Claude Debussy

6) Etudes – Claude Debussy

5) Academic Festival Overture – Johannes Brahms

4) Well-Tempered Clavier – Johann Sebastian Bach

3) A Beautiful Mind – James Horner

2) Goldberg Variations - Johann Sebastian Bach

1) Canon in D – Johann Pachelbel

If you feel exam stress and revision is getting the better of you, get in touch with the team at ChildLine for help and support by calling their free confidential helpline on 0800 1111. Also, support is available from a counsellor online through 1-2-1 chat. The team also has some top tips on getting the best out of revision.

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in