You’re Torturing My Ears

In her science project, a student chose to test students' ability to hear sound in different ranges of pitch.

In this science project, a student chose to test students’ ability to hear sound in different ranges of pitch. 


What group of frequencies do teenagers hear best?

Independent variable

Frequency played

Dependent variable

Reactions of teenagers tested



Teenagers would hear the high frequencies best.


All of the subjects heard the high frequencies best.


All of the teenagers heard the high frequencies because the high frequencies played the loudest through the headphones.

Experimental Error 

I think that it was a little unfair, but I don’t think that there was anything that I could have done about it. The frequencies were so loud that people that weren’t wearing the headphones could hear them.


  1. App to play low bass and high sounds
  2. Good headphones


Valerie worked with a volunteer to determine which app would work best to play the appropriate ranges of pitch she had chosen and which headphones would work best.

She determined that she would need to decide when will this experiment be conducted and where, arrange a room so as not to disrupt class and get consent from students.

Prior to the experiment she needed to:

  1. Find sounds on the app using iPhone.
  2. Sounds should be frequencies
    • 145 Hz  
    • 795 Hz
    • 5000 Hz


  1. Test each volunteer separately.
  2. Have your volunteer put on the headphones.
  3. Play each sound a duration of 3 seconds.
  4. Sounds should be frequencies
    • 145 Hz  
    • 795 Hz
    • 5000 Hz
  5. Record which frequencies each volunteer hears.


You could choose other frequencies to test.

NGSS Standards:

By Laura Hospitál

Return to Accessible Science main page.

Student fingers on the Monarch. APH's photo.

Making math more accessible: Monarch’s Word processor

Cartoon caterpillar on a half eaten leaf reading a book.

Butterflies part 1: Caterpillars

Monarch multiline braille display

Graphing with the Monarch and Desmos