Study for finals with inspiring, stimulating music


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A young woman working on laptop and listening to music while taking notes. Music can help motivate students who are studying for finals. (Getty Images)

By Nick Glover, Lifestyle Editor

With final exam season closing in, some of us need inspiration to ensure that we get all of our work done. For me, the best way to stay focused and energized is with good music. Depending on what you need to get done, there are different genres that will inspire different moods for your study session. 

Lo-fi hip hop

Lo-fi hip hop is perfect for simple background noise. Lo-fi is a genre that is known for its aid on studying. The genre takes samples from classical music and jazz and puts earthy, gritty drums over the samples, creating a soft and relaxing mood, perfect for studying. 

The best place to find lo-fi is on YouTube. Channels like Lofi Girl and chilli music have constant livestreams where lo-fi is streaming non-stop. If you want soft background noise that fits the dim lighting of late-night studying, lo-fi is where you should look.

Heavy Metal

If I’m in a time crunch, the perfect music to motivate me is heavy metal. The banging drums and blazing guitars are full of energy, energy that is perfectly directed toward getting work done. Additionally, the yelling vocals are often distorted enough that the words are unable to be understood so that the lyrics will not distract you. 

If you’re looking for some good metal to get some work done to, my first recommendation is the group Soul Glo. Their hip-hop inspired vocal delivery is so full of spirit that I can’t help but feel motivated to finish homework. Other bands like Gospel, Drug Church and Show Me the Body fit the mood perfectly as well. 

Classical Music

Ringing strings, orchestral brass and booming timpanis and bass drums are the perfect soundtrack if you like to romanticize your work. Because of its use in modern media, classical music is seen as the perfect background music. 

Film soundtracks are historically great for background music. This inspiring music has been ingrained in us through training montages to mean things are about to get done. Because of these montages, when hearing soundtracks we want to mimic the hard-working and captivating scenes we’ve seen so many times in movies.

Recently though, playlists titled Classical Music for When You’re On A Deadline have started taking over YouTube. Each piece on the playlist features aggressive bowing and fast tempos that will push you to work harder than before. For me, Gustav Holst’s “The Planets” is a seven-piece suite that fits my studying needs perfectly.