One of the primary reasons visitors attend exhibitions and conferences is the educational component. Organizers face the daunting task of ensuring that the education program is relevant, dynamic and memorable. The focus of this task has been in the selection of speakers, the theme of the program and the quality of deliverables. But is there something else that can be done to ensure that the visitor experience is maximized so that they absorb, process and are able to use the information they have learned in their everyday lives?
According to a survey reported by Miller-McCune the answer may be the integration of music. A research team led by Fabrice Dosseville of the Universite de Caen Basse-Normandie conducted an experiment which included 249 university students. For one group a series of familiar classical pieces, including Mozart’s Eine Kleine Nachtmusik, Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker and Bach’s Third Brandenburg Concerto was played as background to the lecture. The second heard the lecture with no background music. Each group was then quizzed to see how much information they were able to remember. The results indicate that the students who heard the music-enhanced lecture scored significantly higher that the lecturer only group.
While the reason for this phenomenon was not clear to the researchers, it did point to an important element to learning that organizers might consider experimenting with to see if it improves the attendees overall experience.
This simple and apparently effective addition to a conference or piped onto the floor of an exhibition may be an excellent and appreciated addition.