Resources › For Students and Parents Noise Distraction Share Flipboard Email Print Rob Lewine/Getty Images For Students and Parents Homework Help Study Methods Homework Tips Learning Styles & Skills Time Management Private School Test Prep College Admissions College Life Graduate School Business School Law School Distance Learning View More By Grace Fleming Education Expert M.Ed., Education Administration, University of Georgia B.A., History, Armstrong State University Grace Fleming, M.Ed., is a senior academic advisor at Georgia Southern University, where she helps students improve their academic performance and develop good study skills. our editorial process Grace Fleming Updated February 25, 2019 Are you distracted by noise? Some students struggle to pay attention in class and other study areas because small background noises interfere with their concentration. Background noise does not affect all students in the same way. There are a few factors that may determine whether noise distraction is a problem for you. Noise Distraction and Learning Styles Three of the most commonly recognized learning styles are visual learning, tactile learning, and auditory learning. It is important to discover your own prominent learning style to determine how to study most effectively, but it's also important to know your learning style in order to recognize potential problems. Studies have shown that auditory learners are most distracted by background noise. But how will you know if you are an auditory learner? Auditory learners often: Talk to themselves while reading or studyingMove their lips while readingAre better at speaking than writingSpell better out loudHave difficulty visualizing thingsCan't follow conversations when the TV is onCan mimic songs and tunes well If you feel that these traits describe your personality, you may need to pay special attention to your study habits and the location of your study space. Noise Distraction and Personality Type Two personality types that you may recognize are introversion and extraversion. It is important to know that these types have nothing to do with ability or intelligence; these terms merely describe the way that different people function. Some students are deep thinkers who tend to talk less than others. These are common traits of introverted students. One study has shown that noise distraction can be more harmful to introverted students than to extroverted students when it comes to study time. Introverted students can experience more difficulty understanding what they are reading in a noisy environment. Introverts typically: Like to work independentlyAre confident about their own opinionsThink deeply about thingsReflect and analyze more before acting on somethingCan focus on one thing for a long timeEnjoy readingAre happy in their "own little world"Have a few deep friendships If these traits sound familiar to you, you may want to read more about introversion. You may discover that you need to adjust your study habits to cut down on the potential for noise distraction. Avoiding Noise Distraction Sometimes we don't realize how much background noise can affect our performance. If you suspect that noise interference is affecting your grades, you should consider the following recommendations. Turn off the mp3 and other music when you study: You may love your music, but it's not good for you when you're reading.Stay away from the TV when doing homework: Television shows contain plots and conversations that can trick your brain into distraction when you don't even realize it! If your family watches TV at one end of the house during homework time, try to move to the other end.Buy earplugs: Small, expanding foam earplugs are available at large retail stores and auto stores. They're great for blocking out the noise.Consider investing in some noise-blocking earphones: This is a more expensive solution, but it might make a big difference in your homework performance if you have a serious problem with noise distraction. For more information you may consider: "The Effects of Noise Distraction on SAT Scores," by Janice M. Chatto and Laura O'Donnell. Ergonomics, Volume 45, Number 3, 2002,pp. 203-217.