For young people, music is not just meaningful as an object of aesthetic consumption; it also has a social function to which they attribute different values that influence their identity and social relations. Thus, the aim of this article is to evaluate how their musical preferences are structured and what differences exist by gender and age range, as well as studying what stereotypes they associate with the styles they listen to most in comparison with these variables. To do so, an updated and adapted version of the questionnaire by Cremades et al. (2010) was used. This was answered by 1020 adolescents from a district of the city of Madrid: 540 female (52.9%) and 480 male (47.1%) aged between 12 and 20. The results reveal which styles of popular urban music young people prefer, with older ones listening to a wider range of styles than the younger ones, and female respondents favouring mainstream music and Latin music. The stereotypes they most associate with their preferences are “generation”, “personality”, and “behaviour”, something that is related to the development of the adolescent’s own identity. Therefore, starting from knowledge of the meaning young people attribute to music, it is necessary for music lessons to improve their listening and critical capacities, as a way of creating competent listeners, with sufficient musical and social knowledge of the music they prefer.

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Author Biography

Roberto Cremades-Andreu. Doctor of Education. Associate Professor in the Department of Language, Art and Physical Education Teaching, and he holds the position of vice-dean for Research and Postgraduate Study in the Faculty of Education at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM). His research activity is in the field of music education, with a special interest in analysing the social and psychological perspective of music, as well as in the training of teachers in the European Higher Education Area. Principal investigator and team member in various research (Comenius, I+D+i, AECID, art. 83) and teaching innovation projects. Head of the Music Education from a Social and Psychological Perspective consolidated research group (UCM).


Carlos Lage-Gómez. Doctor of Education. Civil servant on sabbatical from the body of secondary school teachers in the music specialism. He has been a coordinator and teacher in the Gifted Students Programme of the Community of Madrid. He is currently an Associate Professor in the Department of Language, Art and Physical Education Teaching at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid. Visiting researcher at the University of Cambridge, at the University of Eastern Finland and at the Haut École Pédagogique in Vaud (Lausanne, Switzerland). He is author of various articles published in high-impact journals and editorials.


Arantza Campollo-Urkiza.Doctor of Education, licentiate degree in History and Musical Sciences, piano diploma, master’s in Managing Educational Centres. She is currently a professor of practice in the Department of Language, Art and Physical Education Teaching at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid, as well as a specialist music teacher in secondary education. Her principal lines of research centre on disciplinary teaching, with a special focus on music education and its contribution to key competences, and music education from a social and psychological perspective. She has given a number of conference papers and lectures on both subjects. She has also published work

David Hargreaves. Emeritus Professor at the University of Roehampton (London). He previously held posts in the faculties of Psychology and Education at the universities of Leicester and Durham and the Open University. He has also been visiting professor at the universities of Gothenburg (Sweden) and Curtin (Australia). He is a chartered psychologist and a fellow of the British Psychological Society. He was the editor of Psychology of Music (1989-1996) and chair of the research commission of the International Society for Music Education (ISME) (1994-1996). He is currently a member of the editorial boards of ten psychology, music, and education journals. In recent years, he has spoken about his research at international conferences, and is the most cited author in the field.


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Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License

Esta obra está bajo una licencia internacional Creative Commons Atribución-NoComercial 4.0.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License



Palabras clave | Keywords

musical preferences, sociocultural stereotypes, adolescence, new generations