What is Music Therapy?

“Music Therapy is the clinical and evidence-based use of music interventions to accomplish individualized goals within a therapeutic relationship by a credentialed professional who has completed an approved music therapy program.” –American Music Therapy Association

Music therapy is a healthcare profession, and music therapists are nationally board-certified through the Certification Board for Music Therapists.

Music Therapists use music to work on functional goals

Goals may be:

  • Cognitive
  • Communicative
  • Emotional
  • Motor
  • Developmental
  • Spiritual

Do I have to be musical/a musician to participate?

No. There are no musical prerequisites to benefit from music therapy!

Little known fact: all people are born to be musical people – even if you can’t “carry a tune in a bucket.”

People throughout all of human history, and across cultures, have engaged in music – often as a social experience. Music helped people survive by bringing them closer together. As a result, music is hardwired into our brains. Music is processed globally in the human brain, making for a uniquely powerful tool in therapy- from motor to memory and beyond.

Is music therapy supported by research?

Absolutely! Music therapy research can be found worldwide in medical, neuroscience, and music therapy publications.

What does Music Therapy look like?

Music therapy typically (though not always!) involves the use of live music.

Music therapy can be provided to individuals or groups.

Music therapy is provided in a variety of settings:

  • Hospitals
  • Rehabilitation centers
  • Psychiatric hospitals
  • Nursing homes
  • Hospices
  • Outpatient treatment programs
  • Schools
  • Correctional facilities
  • In your home