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Roger Chaffin

Roger Chaffin

Professor

Biography

Roger Chaffin is Professor of Psychology at the University of Connecticut in the USA. In his research he has studied the cognitive processes involved in musical performance. His longitudinal case studies of experienced musicians preparing for performance provide a new level of understanding of the psychological processes involved. These studies combine the third-person perspective of the scientist, which provides objectivity and rigor, with the first-person perspective of the musician, which provides a rich of understanding of the musical judgments that shaped the performance. Often the studies confirm the musicians’ understanding of their experience of performance, providing objective support for their intuitions. Sometimes the musicians are surprised and then everybody learns something new. He has reported this research in journals such as Psychological Science, Music Perception, and Music Psychology and in, Practicing perfection: Memory and piano performance (2002), written in collaboration with pianist Gabriela Imreh and social psychologist Mary Crawford. The book describes how their friendship led to the first longitudinal study of Gabriela’s learning of the Italian Concerto (Presto) and initiated the research on performance cues that is still an important focus of the music performance lab today. His work on musical memory complements his earlier work on memory and language reported in numerous journal articles in journals such as Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, Cognitive Science, and Psychological Bulletin. He is co-editor of Memory in Historical Perspective (1988) and co-author of Cognitive and Psychometric Analysis of Analogical Problem Solving (1991). Professor Chaffin is an amateur flautist who has performed in public exactly once and prefers running white-water rapids in a kayak to the excitement of performing on the concert stage.

 

Education

B.A. Oxford University, England, 1969
Philosophy and Psychology
M.A. University of Delaware, 1972
Psychology
Thesis: Similarity and categorization
Ph.D. University of Illinois, 1976
Cognitive Psychology (minor in Linguistics)
Dissertation: Semantic versus factual knowledge

Contact Information

Department of Psychology
406 Babbidge Rd, U-1020
Storrs CT 06269-1020

 

860-486-4100 Office (Storrs)
860-570-9272 Office (Hartford)
Roger.Chaffin@uconn.edu

Select Publications

Peer Reviewed Articles

Demos, A. P., Chaffin, R., Begosh, K. T., Daniels, J. R., & Marsh, K. L. (In press). Rocking to the Beat: Effects of Music and Partner’s Movements on Spontaneous Interpersonal Coordination. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General. Advance online publication.

Ginsborg, J. & Chaffin , R. (2011). Preparation and spontaneity in performance: A singer’s thoughts while singing Schoenberg. Psychomusicology: Music, Mind & Brain, 21(1), 1-22.

Chaffin, R., Lisboa, T., Logan, T., & Begosh, K.T. (2010). Preparing for Memorized Cello Performance: The Role of Performance Cues. Psychology of music, 38, 3-30.

Chaffin, R. & Lisboa, T. (2008). Practicing perfection: How concert soloists prepare for performance. Ictus, 9, 115-142.

Noice, H., Chaffin, R., Jeffrey, J., & Noice, A. (2008). Memorization by a jazz pianist: A case study. Psychology of Music, 36, 47-61.

Chaffin, R., Lemieux, A., & Chen, C. (2007). “It’s different each time I play”: Spontaneity in highly prepared musical performance. Music Perception, 24, 455-472.

Chaffin, R. (2007). Learning Clair de Lune: Retrieval practice and expert memorization. Music Perception, 24, 377-393.

Chaffin, R. & Logan, T. (2006). Practicing perfection: How concert soloists prepare for performance. Advances in Cognitive Psychology, 2, 113-130.

Ginsborg, J., Chaffin, R., & Nicholson, G. (2006). Shared performance cues in singing and conducting: A content analysis of talk during practice. Music Psychology, 34, 167-194.

Chaffin, R., Imreh, G., Lemieux, A., & Chen, C. (2003). “Seeing the big picture”: Piano practice as expert problem solving.Music Perception, 20 461-485.

Chaffin, R. & Imreh, G. (2002) Practicing perfection: Piano performance as expert memory. Psychological Science, 13, 342-349.

Chaffin, R. Crawford, M.,& Imreh, G. (2002). Performing gender. Feminism & Psychology, 12, 182-189.

Chaffin, R., Morris, R.K., & Seely, R.E. (2001). Learning new word meanings from context: A study of eye movements.Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, 27, 225-235.

Chaffin, R. & Imreh, G. (2001). A comparison of practice and self-report as sources of information about the goals of expert practice. Psychology of Music, 29, 39-69.

Chaffin, R. & Imreh, G. (1997). “Pulling teeth and torture”: Musical memory and problem solving. Thinking & Reasoning: Special Issue on Expert Thinking, 3, 315-336.

Books

Chaffin, R., Imreh, G., & Crawford, M. (2002). Practicing perfection: Memory and piano performance. Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum Associates.

Right click here and click save as to download Garbriela Imreh playing the J.S. Bach’s Presto from the Italian Concerto BWV 971.

Bejar, I.I., Chaffin, R., & Embretson, S. (1991). Cognitive and psychometric analysis of analogical problem solving. New York: Springer-Verlag.

Herrmann, D.J. & Chaffin, R. (1988). Memory in historical perspective: The literature before Ebbinghaus. New York: Springer-Verlag.

Book Chapters

Lisboa, T., Chaffin, R. & Logan, T. (in press). An account of deliberate practice: Thoughts, behaviour and the self in learning Bach’s Prelude 6 for cello solo. In A. Cervino, M. Lettberg, C. Laws & T. Lisboa (Eds.) Practice of Practising (pp. 9-30). Orpheus Research Centre in Music: Leuven, Belgium.

Chaffin, R., Logan, T.R., & Begosh, K.T. (2009). Performing from memory. In S. Hallam, I. Cross, & M. Thaut (Eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Music Psychology (pp. 352-363). Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Lehmann, A.C., & Chaffin, R. (2008). Erinnern und Weidererkennen: Auswendig- und Vomblatt-speil. In H. Bruhn, R. Kopiez & A.C. Lehmann. Musicpsyhologie: Das neue Handbuch (pp. 354-373). Reinbek bei Hamburg: Rowohlt Verlag.

Chaffin, R., Lemieux, A., & Chen, C. (2006). Spontaneity and creativity in highly practiced performance. In I. Deliège & G.A. Wiggins. Musical creativity: Multidisciplinary research in theory and practice (pp. 200-218). London: Psychology Press.

Chaffin, R., & Lemieux, A. (2004). General perspectives on achieving musical excellence. In A. Williamon (Ed.). Musical excellence: Strategies and techniques to enhance performance (pp. 19-39). Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Articles Published without Peer Review

Chaffin, R., & Demos, A.P. (2012). Review of ‘Psychology of music: From sound to significance’. Psychomusicology: Music, Mind, and Brain, 22(1), 55-56.

Chaffin, R., Imreh, G., & Crawford, M. (2004). La pratique de la perfection: Comment un pianiste concertise prepare sa performance. (Practicing perfection: How a concert pianist prepares for a concert.). Medecine des Arts, 48, 33-35.

Chaffin, R. (2002). Review of B. Snyder, Music and memory: An introduction. Music Perception, 20, 18-24.

Imreh, G. & Chaffin, R. (1996/97). Understanding and developing musical memory: The view of a concert pianist. AmericanMusic Teacher, 46, (3), 20-24, 67.

Chaffin, R. & Imreh, G. (1994). Memorizing for piano performance. Piano Journal, 15, 16-19. Chaffin, R., & Crawford, M. (1990). On using your noodle in the supermarket. Review of Jean Lave’s Cognition in Practice. Applied Cognitive Psychology, 4, 505-506.

Recent Conference Presentations

Chaffin, C., Gerlin, C., Demos, A., & Melms, A. (2013). Theory and practice: A case study of how Schenkerian analysis shaped the learning of Chopin’s Barcarolle. In by A. Williamon, D. Edwards, & W. Goebl (Eds.), Proceedings of the International Symposium on Performance Science 2013. Brussels, Belgium. European Association of Conservatoires.

Ginsborg, J., Chaffin, C., Demos, A., & Nicholson, G. (2013). Reconstructing Schoenberg: Rehearsing and performing together. In by A. Williamon, D. Edwards, & W. Goebl (Eds.), Proceedings of the International Symposium on Performance Science 2013. Brussels, Belgium. European Association of Conservatoires.

Lisboa, T., Chaffin, C., Demos, A., & Gerlin, C. (2013). Flexibility in the use of shared and individual performance cues in duo performance. In by A. Williamon, D. Edwards, & W. Goebl (Eds.), Proceedings of the International Symposium on Performance Science 2013. Brussels, Belgium. European Association of Conservatoires.

Lisboa, T., Chaffin, C., & Demos, A. (2013). Recording thoughts as an aid to memorization: A case study. In by A. Williamon, D. Edwards, & W. Goebl (Eds.), Proceedings of the International Symposium on Performance Science 2013. Brussels, Belgium. European Association of Conservatoires.

Demos, A.P., Frank, T., &  Chaffin,R. (2011).Understanding movement during performance: A recurrence quantization approach. In by A. Williamon, D. Edwards, &  L. Bartel (Eds.), Proceedings of the International Symposium on Performance Science 2011. Utrecht, The Netherlands. European Association of Conservatoires.

Begosh, K. T., Chaffin, R., Silva, L.C.B., & Lisboa, T. (2010, August). Embodied Effects on Musicians’ Memory of Highly Polished Performances. To be in the proceedings of the 11th International Society for Music Perception and Cognition. Adelaide, Australia: Casual Productions.

Demos, A.P., Chaffin, R. & Marsh, K.L. (2010, August). Spontaneous vs intentional entrainment to a musical beat. To be in the proceedings of the 11th International Society for Music Perception and Cognition. Adelaide, Australia: Casual Productions.

Chaffin, R. (2010, May). Memory for music performance. In R. Chaffin (Chair), Memorization: The multiple aspects of the memorization process. Symposium conducted at the International Conference on Multidisiplinary Research in Music Pedagogy, Ottowa, Canada.

Demos, A.P., Chaffin, R. & Marsh, K.L. (2010, May). Differences between spontaneous and intentional entrainment to a musical beat. Poster presented at the Association for Psychological Science, Boston MA.

Chaffin, R., (2010, February). Practicing perfection: How concert soloists prepare for performance. Inaugural meeting of North Eastern Music Cognition (NEMCOG). New York University, New York.

Chaffin, R., Demos, A., & Crawford, M. (2009, December). The PC-survey: How does the use of performance cues vary across musicians, instruments, musical styles, and performances? Paper to be presented at the International Symposium on Performance Science, Aukland, New Zealand.

Lisboa, T., Chaffin, R., & Logan, T. (2009, December). How memory fades: Very-long-term recall of Bach. Paper to be presented at the International Symposium on Performance Science, Aukland, New Zealand

Chaffin, R., Demos, A., & Crawford, M. (2009, December). Sources of variation in musicians’ use of performance cues. In R. Chaffin (Chair), Resolving the dissonance between arts and science: Why musicology needs practice based research. Symposium to be conducted at the Second International Conference on Music Communication Science, Sydney, Australia.

Ginsborg, G. & Chaffin, R. (2009, December). Very long term memory for words and melody: An expert singer’s written and sung recall over six year. In R. Chaffin (Chair), Resolving the dissonance between arts and science: Why musicology needs practice based research. Symposium to be conducted at the Second International Conference on Music Communication Science, Sydney, Australia.

Lisboa, T., Chaffin, R., & Logan, T. (2009, December). Memory for music performance: Comparing played and written recall. In R. Chaffin (Chair), Resolving the dissonance between arts and science: Why musicology needs practice based research. Symposium to be conducted at the Second International Conference on Music Communication Science, Sydney, Australia.

Chaffin, R, Ginsborg, J, & Dixon, J. (2009, August). Serial position effects in a singer’s long term recall identify landmarks and lacunae in memory. Presented at the Society for Music Perception and Cognition (SMPC), Indianapolis, IN.

Chaffin, R, Ginsborg, J, & Dixon, J. (2009, August). Serial Position Effects in a Singer’s Long Term Recall Identify Landmarks and Lacunae in Memory. Paper presented at the European Society for the Cognitive Sciences of Music (ESCOM), Jyväskylä, Finland.

Begosh, K. T. & Chaffin, R. (2009, August). Listeners’ Sensitivity to Performers’ Expressive Intentions. Poster presented at the Society for Music Perception and Cognition (SMPC), Indianapolis, IN.

Begosh, K. T., Chaffin, R., Barros, L.C., & Lisboa, T. (2009, August). Cued Recall of Memory for Performance. Poster presented at the European Society for the Cognitive Sciences of Music (ESCOM), Jyväskylä, Finland.

Demos, A., Chaffin, R., Lewis, A., Begosh, K.T., Daniels, J., & Marsh, K.(2009, August). Rocking in Synch: Effects of music on interpersonal coordination. Poster presented at the Society for Music Perception and Cognition (SMPC), Indianapolis.

Demos, A. P., & Chaffin, R. (2009, August). A Software Tool for Studying Music Practice: SYMP (Study Your Music Practice). Poster presented at the European Society for the Cognitive Sciences of Music (ESCOM), Jyväskylä, Finland.

Logan, T., Demos, A. P., & Chaffin, R. (2009, August). A Method for Studying Music Practice: SYMP (Study Your Music Practice). Poster presented at the Society for Music Perception and Cognition (SMPC), Indianapolis.