Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Music



First Advisor

Dr. Brian L. Wilson

Second Advisor

Dr. Mary Scovel

Third Advisor

Dr. Michele Burnette

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


The primary purpose of this study was to determine whether music could become a conditioned stimulus for lowered muscle tension and/or reduced anxiety.

There were three groups: (1) the PMR group receiving PMR alone, (2) the MUS group receiving music alone, and (3) the PMRM group receiving PMR followed by music. After four training sessions, a posttest was conducted in which all of the groups were given five minutes to relax. The PMR group had silence, the MUS group had music and the PMRM group had music which had previously been heard after relaxation training. Tension and anxiety reduction were then measured using an electromyograph monitor and the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (Spielberger, Gorsuch, & Lushene, 1970).

No significant differences were found between the three groups in muscle tension reduction or anxiety reduction. This may have been due to inconsistent relaxation resulting in inconsistent pairing of music and relaxation.