Bauhaus-Universität Weimar

Experimental Psychology: A Manual of Laboratory Practice, Vol. I: Qualitative Experiments, Part 1: Student's Manual
Titchener, Edward B.
§ 45- Degrees of Tonal Fusion 
to say ‘ doubtful ’ (or write the sign ?), stating at the same time 
the direction in which his judgment inclines. 
At the signal “ Now ! ” 0 closes his eyes, and awaits the 
stimulus. E sounds the note or notes for 2 sec. 0 records his 
judgment, and the experiment is repeated. The time-interval 
between test and test should be kept as constant as possible. 
No fixed rule can be laid down for it ; but three series of 25 tests 
each, with short pauses for rest between them, may be taken in 
the hour. At least 25 trials should be made with each of the 12 
musical intervals (300 tests in all). 
Results. — There will, probably, be some intervals which are 
invariably heard as more than one note, i.e., which are ‘judged 
correctly’ by 0 in every instance. On the other hand, there 
will perhaps be some intervals which are invariably heard as one 
note. E tabulates the intervals, in the order from highest to 
lowest percentage of errors. The first line of the Table will give 
the most perfect, the last line the least perfect fusions ; the 
intermediate lines show the intermediate fusion degrees. 
Questions and Cognate Experiments.—(1) How many 
degrees of fusion are distinguishable within the octave ? Are 
the different degrees separated by equal or by unequal steps or 
distances ? 
(2) Formulate the general law of tonal fusion. 
(3) Is the degree of fusion of two tones dependent upon the 
tone region (the part of the musical scale) from which the tones 
are taken ? 
(4) Is the degree of fusion dependent upon the (absolute or 
relative) intensity of the component tones ? 
(5) How is fusion degree affected by extension of the inter¬ 
vals beyond the octave ? Is there, e.g., any difference between 
the fusion degree of the fifth and that of the twelfth ? 
(6) How is fusion degree affected by the addition of a third, 
fourth, etc., tone to the two primary tones ? 
(7) How is fusion degree affected by a spatial separation (dif¬ 
ferent localisation) of the two tones ? 
(8) Can you ideate (imagine, think of) two simultaneously 
sounding tones in any other than their perceptual degree of 
fusion ?


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