Science project

Is There a Relationship Between Tempo and Genre?

Research Questions:

  • How easy is it to classify a song's genre by beats per minute alone?
  • Which genres have the fastest tempos?
  • Which genres have the slowest tempos?
  • Which genres are closest in beats per minute?


  • Twelve pieces of music (include a variety of genres: hip-hop, country, classical, pop, rock, folk, jazz). The library is a great resource for acquiring many different genres of music.
  • A device to listen to the music (CD player, iPod, mp3, etc.)
  • Paper and pencil to record data
  • Optional: music software

Experimental Procedure:

  1. Listen to the first track of music. (Hint: The more specific you are in the genres you choose - bluegrass instead of country or samba instead of simply Latin - the smaller your ranges are likely to be, and your data will be more easily interpreted.)
  2. Determine the beats per minute (bpm): count the number of beats you hear in 15 seconds of the song then multiply that number by four in order to get 60 seconds worth of beats. You can also determine the bpm using special music software that you can download for free at this website.
  3. Record your results.
  4. Repeat this process for each song.
  5. Analyze your results. Which genres have the fastest tempos? Which genres have the slowest tempos? Could you classify a song's genre by its bpm? Could you predict this or was it a surprise?

Terms/Concepts: beats per minute (bpm), tempo, music genres


Disclaimer and Safety Precautions provides the Science Fair Project Ideas for informational purposes only. does not make any guarantee or representation regarding the Science Fair Project Ideas and is not responsible or liable for any loss or damage, directly or indirectly, caused by your use of such information. By accessing the Science Fair Project Ideas, you waive and renounce any claims against that arise thereof. In addition, your access to's website and Science Fair Project Ideas is covered by's Privacy Policy and site Terms of Use, which include limitations on's liability.

Warning is hereby given that not all Project Ideas are appropriate for all individuals or in all circumstances. Implementation of any Science Project Idea should be undertaken only in appropriate settings and with appropriate parental or other supervision. Reading and following the safety precautions of all materials used in a project is the sole responsibility of each individual. For further information, consult your state's handbook of Science Safety.

Add to collection

Create new collection

Create new collection

New Collection


New Collection>

0 items