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Researchers have long been interested in measuring musical skills objectively, but the task faces several challenges. A workaround solution is to rely on musicianship status as a way to determine musical competence. However, this approach has an important limitation in that it cannot identify musical talent in musically untrained individuals.

To counteract this limitation, we developed the Profile of Music Perception Skills (PROMS; Law & Zentner, 2012). The PROMS is a novel musical test battery that measures perceptual musical skills objectively across multiple modalities, such as timbre, tuning, melody, pitch, rhythm, and tempo.

Two shorter versions of the test are now also available, the Short-PROMS and the Mini-PROMS (Zentner & Strauss, 2017). Next to being more time-effective, the new versions feature improvements to the online-interface and additional evidence in support of test validity and reliability. An additional strength is a novel feature called Modular PROMS, which offers researchers the possibility to request customized batteries that may include any combination of the subtests.

The PROMS is available in various versions and languages (e.g. English, German, French, Spanish, Norwegian, Russian, and Japanese. You are welcome to use the test for research purposes or to take it yourself and receive a feedback-profile on your music perception skills.


Play! by David Bain/flickr

PROMS User Guide

Learn more about the PROMS and how to use it for your own research project.


How to test for music skills

In his blog, Richard Kunert addresses the issue of (musical) ability assessment.

Music - Train Travels by Anne Helmond/flickr

Take the PROMS yourself

Curious? Take the test yourself and get detailed feedback on your music perception skills.

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