How To Become A Music Therapist
In order to become a music therapist, students first need to have a degree in music therapy or some sort of equivalency degree or certification.
Most preparation programs provide a combination of academic and clinical preparation. It is common for many universities to advertise that their program takes “four years, plus a six-month internship.” Thus, students embarking on this path should realize that this isn”t a standard four-year degree. Following the successful completion of undergraduate coursework and clinical training, candidates are then eligible to sit for the national board exam and receive the MT-BC status.
What Is Your Motivation To Apply For Admission To A Music Therapy Program
Have you read about music therapy? Observed music therapy? Spoken to a Music Therapist? Have you had any hands-on experience with challenged persons? For an inclusive list of publications in the library on music therapy see worldcat.org and type in music therapy. For a sample of the available full-text publications, go to and type in search words.
Is Music Therapy A Good Fit
Music therapists are highly creative, energetic, and positive. They are interested in people and have a desire to help. They demonstrate strong communication skills and work well with others. Because music therapists are able to work in a variety of settings and with numerous populations and age groups, they are able to adapt techniques and strategies, thereby individualizing treatment depending on client needs.
Other important attributes include being empathetic, patient, imaginative, open, and understanding. Perhaps most importantly, though, music therapists, like their clients, have a love for music, although unlike their clients, prospective music therapists must have a background in music.
Consider volunteering in settings that utilize music therapy to see whether this is a career field that fits your interests and personality.
Mary Holliday, a board-certified music therapist and former chair of the Workforce Development and Retention Committee for American Music Therapy Association . Check out her article Music Therapy: Making a Difference One Note At a Time.
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Purdue University Fort Wayne
Fort Wayne, IN
Total Points: 6 Program Website
Purdue University Fort Wayne reached our top 30 affordable colleges for music therapy degree training with $8,589 in-state attendance costs. At Rhinehart Center, the College of Visual & Performing Arts bestows a low-priced Music Therapy B.S.M.T. with a 100 percent MT-BC certification exam pass rate to master evidence-based therapeutic music methods. Mentored by Dr. Nancy Jackson, the economical, 121-credit, NASM-accredited degree plan mandates cumulative 2.5 GPAs during courses like Aural Perception and Exceptionality of Children plus six-month internships. Mastodons might also join the Three Rivers Honor Band, enter the Gene Marcus Competition, tour Prague, and earn the Deans Grant.
Bachelor of Science in Music TherapyIn-State Tuition: $8,589
Maryville University Of St Louis
Master of Music Therapy
Average Graduate Tuition: $13,768
The music therapy program at Maryville University is open to those with and without an undergraduate degree in music therapy. Students without an appropriate background will need to complete prerequisite coursework in addition to masters coursework to complete the program. This program is offered during the evenings to allow students to work while they attend school. Students who attend full-time are able to complete the program in just two years. Coursework covers areas such as ethics, research, psychotherapy, and treatment models. Graduates are prepared to work with individuals who have mental disorders, addictions, autism, and other disabilities.
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First Get A Music Therapy Degree
Education requirements for becoming a music therapist include topics like psychology, biology, social and behavioral sciences, in addition to general studies and career-specific courses.
According to the AMTA, your curriculum must also include 1200 clinical hours, completed through fieldwork such as an internship in healthcare or education.
Degrees are available between the bachelors level and masters level. Some schools offer higher-level degrees, such as doctoral options. In any degree program, youll cover topics like:
- Musical foundations
- General education
Here are a few schools that offer music therapy degree programs:
Berklee College of MusicBachelor of Music in Music Therapy: Youll take the expected therapy courses plus instrumental classes for a well-rounded introduction to the profession.
Biola UniversityBachelor of Music in Music Therapy: Biolas program combines music therapy coursework with interdisciplinary study with Biolas psychology department. However, this program is currently pending AMTA approval, according to the universitys website.
Loyola UniversityMaster of Music Therapy : The Masters degree in Music Therapy covers research, music therapy in medicine, theories, and multicultural issues.
Also, the university notes that the AMTA endorses Loyolas MMT program. To earn this degree, youll need to be Board Certifiedor you can take the equivalency program option instead.
Music Performance Program Requirements
Music performance programs require an Ontario Secondary School Diploma or equivalent, which includes a grade 12 English credit. Degree programs also require six grade 12 U or M courses.
Auditions are a significant part of the admissions process. Students may also be required to submit recordings, resumes and proof of music experience to be considered. Individual program requirements vary, so be sure to check them carefully.
Mississippi University For Women
Total Points: 7Program Website
The Mississippi University for Women holds our eighth best affordable music therapy degree with cheap $7,525 tuition. At Poindexter Hall, the College of Arts, Sciences, & Education added a low-cost Music Therapy Concentration to its Bachelor of Music in August 2002 to learn mental and physical health interventions for CBMT credentialing. Overseen by Dr. Julia Mortyakova, the inexpensive, 124-credit, AMTA-approved coed degree program builds on core courses like Vocal Performance with 1,200-hour internships at Windsor Place, Recovery House, Baptist Memorial, and more. Owls might also attend the Music By Women Festival, join the Jazz Ensemble, minor in American Studies, and tour Oslo.
Bachelor of Music Music Therapy ConcentrationIn-State Tuition: $7,525
Total Points: 8Program Website
Bachelor of Music in Music TherapyIn-State Tuition: $28,656
Total Points: 8Program Website
Bachelor of Music with Emphasis in Music TherapyIn-State Tuition: $11,732
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 www.musictherapy.org. Music Therapists use music in a therapeutic setting to restore, improve, or maintain mental and physical health. Music Therapists use music interventions to accomplish non-musical goals, so clients need not have any special musical training.
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Masters Degree In Music
A masterâs degree in music is a 1-3 year graduate program that allows student to pursue advanced studies in music. Eligibility will depend on your choice of program, but most schools will expect you to have an undergraduate degree in music or a closely related field from an accredited program. We recommend you look at each schoolâs application requirements for precise details. For example:
- Music therapists should have board-certification before applying to a masterâs programs.
- Potential MMus students must often pass an audition.
- Masterâs programs in composition may require you to submit a portfolio of scores and recordings of live performances.
Students pursue a masterâs degree because they are deeply interested in a field and/or wish to teach. Talk to your graduate adviser about your options. A masterâs degree is not necessary for many music jobs.
MMus Sample Coursework
Like the BMus, the MMus is focused on applied studies â i.e. intensive lessons, performance requirements, and working with a mentor. In addition to taking core courses in music theory, music teaching, and music history and specialized classes in your area of interest , you may be spending a lot of your time practicing your craft.
If You Have A Bachelors Degree In Music
According to the American Music Therapy Association, students complete only the required coursework necessary to satisfy professional competencies in music therapy without necessarily earning a second baccalaureate degree. The equivalency program consists of all core music therapy courses at the undergraduate level, all clinical training requirements including the internship, plus any related coursework in science and psychology .
Note that students or graduates who received a BA instead of a BM in music may need to spend additional time taking music credits theyre missing.
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What To Expect From A Career Performing Music
Musicians and performers are among the most disciplined and dedicated professionals out there. Hours are spent perfecting their skills not because they have to, but because its their passion. The music industry is highly competitive, but with the right training and education its possible to get ahead of the competition. Ontario college music performance programs provide students with the practical training and theoretical music knowledge they need to succeed in this demanding industry.
If you have a passion for music and want to make a career out of performing or teaching, heres what you need to know.
Doctoral Degree In Music
A doctorate in music is a 3-7 year advanced degree and the highest academic qualification you can achieve. Some universities offered combined masterâs/doctorate programs for bachelorâs graduates. Other universities will expect you to hold a masterâs degree before applying. Depending on your choice of program, you may be expected to submit a composition portfolio, provide examples of your expertise , and/or pass an audition before you are accepted.
DMA programs are open to candidates with a MMus, an MA, or a closely related degree. PhD programs in musicology or music theory are often targeted at candidates with an MA in music. However, some PhD programs are willing to consider strong candidates with a MMus in performance or composition, so itâs always best to check.
- Doctor of Musical Arts : Typically a practical/performance-oriented degree offered in concentrations such as performance , composition, and conducting. Graduates become professional musicians and/or teach and conduct research in universities.
- Doctorate of Philosophy in Music: Typically a research-oriented degree offered in concentrations such as music theory, music therapy, ethnomusicology, etc. Graduates are often involved in high-level research and university teaching.
DMA Sample Coursework
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Music Therapy At The Cali School
Established in 1969, our program is one of the countrys oldest and most distinguished. It features closely supervised clinical work each semester at highly reputable New Jersey facilities as well as schools, nursing homes and hospitals in New York City. In addition, the program offers a Music Therapy Training Group, Introduction to Guided Imagery and Music, and specialized courses in piano accompaniment and clinical improvisation. Guest clinicians from the U.S. and abroad offer presentations and workshops. Recent guest clinicians have included: Clive Robbins, Clare OCallaghan and Elaine Streeter .
Join us for Music Therapy Day. Information here.
Arizona State University School Of Music Theatre And Dance
Music therapy students at ASU will receive a broad, rigorous education in instrumental performance as well as therapeutic skills.
Students learn improvisation, songwriting, world music, and popular music styles. They can hone their instrumental skills by participating in one of ASUs many orchestras, bands, ensembles, and choirs.
Ethnomusicology ensembles include African Drumming, Javanese Gamelan, Mariachi, and Steel Pan.
The ASU Music Therapy Clinic offers professional development opportunities for students, connecting them with real patients in the community.
The schools metropolitan location makes it easy for students to complete the six-month required internship at local healthcare facilities.
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Temple University Boyer College Of Music And Dance
Temple offers a variety of concentrations within the discipline of music therapy.
Undergraduates can major in music therapy or even music therapy jazz, either of which are completed with a concentration in a performing instrument.
These programs last four and a half years, which include a semester of post-academic clinical training after senior year.
Graduate students can get a Masters in Music Therapy or a PhD. Whichever path you choose, you will be guided by expert faculty with experience in the NICU, developmental disorders, and more.
To supplement academic study, students can join the Music Therapy Club a fundraising organization for charities and for sending students to AMTA Conferences in the mid-Atlantic region or the National Association for Music Education, the Temple chapter for music educators.
Music Performance Jobs And Salaries
The most common jobs for music performance graduates are performing artists and music teachers. As a performing artist, you may find a career with symphonies and bands or sign on with recording, television, film and other entertainment-related companies. You could also work in theatre, combining musical performance with dancing and acting. Job openings in other music-related businesses, including radio, publishing, production and retail, may also be an option.
If you decide to teach music, opportunities are available in public schools, conservatories, private music schools, colleges and more. Many graduates choose the entrepreneurial route, teaching from home or starting their own businesses.
The average starting salary in music performance is between $21,000 and $31,000 per year. Small record labels and productions typically dont pay very well , but graduates can expect to make more when they become established or get a break with a big theatre company or label.
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Music Therapy Degree Programs: How To Choose The Best School
Karen D. Goodman, Professor Emerita, Music, Montclair State University, Montclair, N.J. is a seasoned Music Therapy Educator, Author, Editor, Clinician, and Supervisor in the field of national and international music therapy. She offers consulting services in editing, clinical supervision, mentoring for educators, guest lecturing, continuing education in music therapy, academic writing support, and career guidance: Karen D. Goodman Consulting Services, LLC.
What are the best schools for studying Music Therapy?
For a brief introduction to music therapy, see the American Music Therapy Association.
Top 20 Most Affordable Music Therapy Degrees In 2021
Combining the creative field of music with the clinical field of recreational therapy, musical therapists help patients improve their physical and mental health. Clinicians work with small children, those with disabilities, and the elderly. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, this field will grow 8% in the next 10 years, with an average salary of $48,220.
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Receive Letter Of Offer
If you are accepted into a program, you will receive a letter of offer in your myCapU email inbox.
- You will need to confirm your acceptance into the program by paying a tuition deposit outlined in your letter of offer.
- This deposit will go towards your first-semester tuition once you are registered for courses at CapU.
After paying your tuition deposit, you will receive a letter of acceptance in your myCapU inbox. This may be used to apply for, or renew, a study permit.
- Depending on your citizenship, you may also need to apply for an entry visa.
Most Popular Schools For Music Therapy/therapist Major & Degree Program
A program that prepares individuals, in association with a rehabilitation team or in private practice, to use music in therapeutic relationships to address patients’ physical, psychological, cognitive, emotional, and social needs. Includes instruction in music theory and performance, human growth and development, biomedical sciences, abnormal psychology, disabling conditions, patient assessment and diagnosis, treatment plan development and implementation, clinical evaluation, record-keeping, and professional standards and ethics.
Looking for online degree programs? Get the facts on accredited college degree programs online!
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Applying To Illinois State
Applying by our priority deadline is encouraged for best consideration for your academic program and for scholarships. You will select your audition time within the application for admission. Start your application today!
Applying to the Program
- Complete your application for admission, including selecting an audition datewe’ll email you with a confirmation for your audition.
- Refer to the suggested repertoire recommendations for each music studio to prepare for your audition. You may want to also contact the respective applied faculty member for further information about the audition.
- Visit your portal to upload:
- a letter of recommendation from a music professional
- a music resume
Online Bachelor’s In Music Therapy Programs Ranking Guidelines
There are scores of undergraduate music therapy programs across the country, and many of them have had their curriculum approved by the American Music Therapy Association. Still, we wanted to find the best programs available. What is it that makes a program go from “meeting expectations” to “exceeding expectations?”.
Florida Gulf Coast University
Fort Myers, FL
Total Points: 8Program Website
Florida Gulf Coast University kicks off the top five affordable colleges for music therapy degree programs with cheap $6,118 in-state pricing. At Bower Music Hall, the College of Arts & Sciences provides a high-value Bachelor of Music Therapy BMT to enter this allied health profession with MT-BC certification. Coordinated by Dr. Mike Rohrbacher, the low-priced, 127-credit, NASM-accredited degree curriculum accepts up to 94 transfer credits graded C or better to accelerate through Fort Myers courses like Music Technology and Human Physiology to the 1,200-hour internship. Eagles may also attend the Nisita Concert Series, perform in Marilyn Bower Korest Rehearsal Hall, join the Basketball Band, and journey to Rome.
Total Points: 9Program Website
Bachelor of Arts in Music TherapyIn-State Tuition: $6,972
Total Points: 9Program Website
Bachelor of Music in Music Therapy In-State Tuition: $6,467
Total Points: 9Program Website
Bachelor of Music Music Therapy ConcentrationIn-State Tuition: $4,452
Total Points: 10Program Website
Bachelor of Science in Music TherapyIn-State Tuition: $7,070Graduation Rate: 62 percent