Effects of choral singing on salivary cortisol levels and self-reported stress in university students





Stress, university students, music therapy, choir singing, salivary cortisol


Although mental disorders are common among university students, the majority of students with mental health issues do not seek out treatment during their academic life. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of a novel group approach- choir singing, and its potential impact on stress, via salivary cortisol levels and self-reported stress levels in university students during 4 sessions of choir singing. It was based on a quasi-experimental research conducted with 25 Brazilian university students. Each choir singing session lasted 60 minutes. A question was asked before and after the intervention: what is the level of your stress? Salivary cortisol was collected before and after the intervention. After the choir singing intervention, there was  a statistically significant reduction in self-reported stress (p<0.0001) and salivary cortisol levels (p<0.0001). This research suggests that choir singing can reduce the self-reported stress of university students after 4 weeks of follow-up with ∆= 45.83% and salivary cortisol levels in the first week with ∆= 3.57%.

Author Biographies

Gunnar Glauco De Cunto Carelli Taets, Federal University of Rio de Janeiro

Nursing College

Ramon Werner Heringer Gutierrez, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro

Medical School

Leila Brito Bergold, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro

Nursing College

Luana Silva Monteiro

Nutrition School


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