STEM vs STEAM vs STEMM(usic)
Music does change the body’s most important organ, and changes it more profoundly than any other intellectual, creative, or physical endeavor.
Few of us would argue against music's transformative powerful. Whether one is a consumer, producer, or critic, music's connection to our culture and to ourselves is certainly no secret. However, the reasons why have not always been visible to us scientifically. It is challenging to capture in data points the impact of subjective experiences. Now science is helping us understand what many of us have always known: music matters and is a key elevator of brain function and interdisciplinary connections. It has the power of at once being able to synthesize what we know while also transcending what we know. It is a key to harnessing the mysteries and capabilities of the human brain's capacity. Music is unique, unparalleled in its effects, and worth much more than school, industry, and commercial markets often reflect.
According to the following research, it might seem that the "STEM" movement (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) misses [M]usic as a vital agent of synthesis. While some have argued anecdotally that STEM also needs [A]rts (STEAM), this research shows more specifically that among the arts, music is unique in its effect on brain activity and cognitive executive functions.
Questions: What should be the impact of this research? Should this elevate the arts in our views of education and behavioral sciences, or, more specifically should music alone be elevated in this way? Is this evidence for the needed expansion of music in our schools and through society at-large via government programs? Is there something to be said for the value of arts independent of its commercial value and therefore, should society bear more responsibility in ensuring support?