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Research Reports Suggesting that Absolute Pitch (Perfect Pitch) Ability Can Be Learned

Summaries of research reports that suggest that absolute pitch ability can be learned and improved through practice (note that "perfect pitch" is usually called by researchers "absolute pitch"):

Lola L. Cuddy

"The experiments reported in this paper suggest that learning or past experience plays an important role in determining the ability to judge musical pitches. Experiments 2 and 3 indicate that pitch judgment can be improved through a specific kind of training on the identification of a single tone."

"Practice Effects in the Absolute Judgment of Pitch," by Lola L. Cuddy, in The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America 1968, Vol. 43, 1069-1076.

Perfect pitch ear trainingNote: Cuddy's most successful training method is similar to that described by Paul T. Brady. Cuddy uses the note A instead of C and simply requires subjects to identify a note as "A" or "Not A". This type of training can easily be implemented with EarTest.

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EarTest is a Windows program that allows you to practice perfect pitch (and relative pitch) ear training. EarTest is flexible--you can try all the practice methods suggested by these studies.

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