What Is Music Therapy?
Music therapy is the clinical use of music by a board-certified music therapist to achieve individualized, non-musical goals. Music therapists facilitate evidence-based, musical interventions developed to work toward specific goals. Such goals can be pre-determined by the client, client’s family, and music therapist together.
At the Miami House of Creative Arts, we take a person-centered, humanistic approach to music therapy, aiming to meet our clients where they are at and then improving their health and wellness through music. We also strive to incorporate the most current research-proven methods into our practice.
Music Therapy Preparation and Coursework
Music therapists must complete a music therapy degree program at an accredited university including courses in music, psychology, neuroscience, and biology. Prior to graduating, music therapists must have accumulated at least 1200 hours of clinical training, including a six-month (minimum) internship at an approved internship site.
The last step to becoming a music therapist is passing the Certification Board for Music Therapist (CBMT) national exam. In order to maintain their certification, music therapists complete at least 100 Continuing Music Therapy Education credits (CMTE) every five years.
Benefits of Music Therapy
Here are some examples of what music therapy interventions might look like:
Writing a rock song with a teenager with anxiety to work on expressing emotions and identifying appropriate coping skills
Practicing bilabial sound, “ba” with a child with a developmental disability along with a preferred song to improve speech and language skills
A child with autism playing a drum and stopping when the music stops, working on executive functioning skills like impulse control
Singing a song from the 50s with an adult with Alzheimer’s disease and reminiscing after, using the music to bring back positive memories and the associated mood from those memories
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