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Oxford Seminar in the Psychology of Music: Diana Omigie (Goldsmiths University of London)

May 12 @ 4:56 pm - 6:26 pm


Diana Omigie, Music listening as a window into the aesthetic pleasure of information seeking

Please sign up here: https://oxford.onlinesurveys.ac.uk/ospom-dr-diana-omigie 


Information seeking may be defined as the motivation to seek and explore information in the environment. The availability of computational tools that allow the information theoretic properties of musical events to be objectively quantified thus makes music an optimal testbed for studying this important drive. In this talk, I will first present studies in which we have used depth-electrode intracranial recordings to examine the cortical and subcortical correlates of music-induced surprise and uncertainty. I will then present studies that, using computational modelling, provide evidence of music’s ability to induce curiosity as a function of the idiosyncrasies of its unfolding structure. Finally, I will provide evidence that individual differences in trait curiosity may account for variations in the timepoints at which listeners derive maximal enjoyment from music. Several theories suggest a role of curiosity and interest in the aesthetic response, but the potential of musical stimuli to throw light on these epistemic emotions are still under-exploited. I will close with recommendations as to how musical stimuli might be useful in addressing important open questions in the cognitive neurosciences of information seeking.


Diana Omigie is a cognitive neuroscientist and music psychologist, whose research interests revolve around the behavioural, physiological and neural correlates of music-induced emotions and the aesthetic experience. After a BSc in Neuroscience at UCL, and MSc and PhD studies at Goldsmiths, University of London, she completed postdoctoral fellowships in the USA (New York University), France (NeuroSpin, Brain and Spine Institute, University of Lille) and Germany (Max Planck Institute of Empirical Aesthetics). Diana now holds a Lectureship in Music Psychology at Goldsmiths, where she directs the MSc programme in Music, Mind and Brain.

About the series:

The Faculty of Music at the University of Oxford is pleased to announce a new seminar series – the Oxford Seminar in the Psychology of Music (OSPoM) – convened by Eric Clarke. Enjoying a position at a neglected part of the clock, seminars will start at 4.56pm GMT, and will last for 90 minutes – 45 minutes presentation followed by 45 minutes of discussion. These seminars are open to all.


May 12
4:56 pm - 6:26 pm
Event Categories:


Faculty of Music
01865 (2)76133