Ohio State University
School of Music
Further work on the psychoacoustics
and physiology of dissonance is needed.
All of the important psychoacoustic theories
(such as Tonotopic Dissonance, Difference Tones, and Temporal
Dissonance) need extensive testing on non-Western listeners.
All of the important exposure or learning-based theories
(such as Expectation Dissonance, Interval Category Dissonance,
and Absolute Pitch Category Dissonance)
need to demonstrate the effect of different cultures.
Historically, there has been a strong tendency for
researcher's to accept only a single theory
New research programs are needed that begin from
the premise that more than one theory is
For example, we need to investigate a
possible duplex perception of dissonance
where both tonotopic and temporal (e.g. beating)
factors contribute to dissonance.
Relationship to personality, etc.
Contrary to popular opinion, most theories
predict several "good" scales as optimum
for consonant music.
More in-depth studies are required of
scales in different cultures so that
proper comparisons with theory can be made.
Since timbre is known to affect consonance/dissonance,
theories should be able to predict the kinds of
timbres that are commonly used in music.
We should be able to test whether the preferred
musical timbres coincide with particular
Similarly, we should be able to test whether
instrument combinations or patterns of
orchestration coincide with particular
Working out the effect of streaming on dissonance