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Doing homework is a tricky situation. Environment is everything. Some people hate the library because it’s too quiet or always leave their dorm rooms because it’s too loud. Others manage just fine with nothing in their ears while others need their headphones in at maximum volume.

In my experience, I’ve always struggled to do homework with music. It took a lot of practice to be able to focus on my work while also bopping along to whatever music I was listening to at the time. Then again, once I got the hang of it, music was a great way to avoid environmental distractions and also stay in a good mood. Some of the songs I listened to over and over again last year have stuck with me so vividly that I think of them every time I enter the library to do homework.

This year though I fell into a music slump and this left my homework music habits neglected. I went back to straight silence. That is until I discovered this interesting niche on Youtube.

It started out as a video called “Lo-fi for Witches Only” with an animated cover of a witch doing homework. Adorable! Because it was spooky season and I needed something to fill up the silence of my room, I put it on. From there, my newfound appreciation for lo-fi study music only grew.

For more of an explanation, “lo-fi study music” is usually music without lyrics, just beats that develop and change over the length of the video. Some videos can last 10 minutes while others go for an astonishing 3 hours. The cool thing is, the music is constantly moving, never staying in the same place for very long. And even as it changes, it always follows the same sort of sound and vibe. 

Over time I’ve found a variety of types of lo-fi music ranging from spooky to sad to lonesome. It seems that the main goal of these beats is to evoke a certain feeling. Usually, the videos will have a certain description and the music will match that. For example, one video I’ve listened to is called “It’s 5 A.M and I Haven’t Slept.” Along with the cute graphics on the screen, the music creates the aesthetic of exactly that title.

Now, I’m no scientist but from my own personal research, I’ve noticed that these Youtube videos are extremely helpful in my homework process. The noise helps me stay grounded in what I’m doing while creating a positive ambience (which is beneficial if I’m doing something I really don’t want to do). Then, the lack of words in the music helps because then I can’t get distracted if I’m reading or writing or simply want to sing along. I can bop my head while also writing an essay. Lastly, I think the titles of these videos definitely work as a sort of premonition. Even if it’s not 5 A.M. or you aren’t feeling lonely or whatever the title says, you can still put yourself into that mood and feel a sort of comfort in the emotions of it. All in all, if I had to put words into my thoughts for lo-fi study music it would be this: positive ambience.

Hopefully at this point I’ve convinced you to at least give this little Youtube niche a try. So, to make it even easier, here are a few of my recommendations:

  1. Homework Radio– This is a Youtube channel that created that first lo-fi mix I ever listened to. They’ve got a variety of options ranging in length and with plenty of cute graphics to look at.

  2. Dreamy– Another Youtube channel with a whole cache of hour long mixes! Their playlists represent some very specific moments and experiences that vary in moods. Whatever you want they’ve got.

  3. Lofi Chill Music– If words in songs don’t bother you, then this Youtube channel has a great array of mixes filled with old songs. The vibes are immaculate. 

  4. Chillhop Music– Lastly, this channel has a great fantastical element to it. Trying to be taken away to a faraway land while doing homework? These are the mixes for you. 

In the end, homework can be a tough process to get through and luckily we have so much music available to us it may feel impossible to choose. However, if you’re feeling stuck in a rut and need some chill, easy music to listen to, then check out the Lo-Fi Study Music niche of Youtube.

Megan Hemenway is a sophomore at Endicott College, studying Communications with a minor in Creative Writing. Originally from Woburn, Massachusetts, Megan loves reading and writing. In the future, she hopes to be able to continue writing, specifically about entertainment or lifestyle. In her free time, Megan loves hanging out with her family and of course, her two dogs.
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