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Course content

  • Approved by the Health Care Professions Council (HCPC), this training leads to a nationally recognised professional qualification as a music therapist.
  • Work placements organised by the University, the majority with a music therapist on site.
  • Music therapy course staff have their own current clinical work, and are therefore embedded in current practice and clinical thinking.
  • The staff team are involved in writing and researching and have a high profile within the UK music therapy profession.
  • Work as a music therapist to benefit people with a wide range of challenges.
  • In the Research Excellence Framework 2014, the leading national assessment of quality, 100% of the research we submitted was rated “world-leading” or “internationally excellent” for its impact. 

Summary

The Music Therapy programme offers training for competent, practising musicians to become therapists, bringing together their skills, education and other life experiences. On completion of the training, graduates are eligible to apply to the HCPC for registration, with the ability and flexibility to practice within the NHS, Social Services, education or private sector.

Music therapists draw on the innate qualities of music in order to support people of all ages and at all stages of life who are facing diverse challenges. Music therapy facilitates positive changes in wellbeing through the engagement in live musical interaction. Essential to music therapy is the relationship between client and therapist. At Roehampton we have chosen to base our Music Therapy training programme on the use of psychoanalytic ideas to inform our understanding of the therapy process and the ways the client works with the environment, the therapist and the music. Broader theories and ways of working are also studied in order to equip students to meet a range of clinical need. Music therapy as practised in Great Britain is largely based upon improvisation, the music being the shared and spontaneous creation of the person in therapy and the Music Therapist. Other styles of music, including song writing, the use of technology and pre-composed music are also used as appropriate to the need of the individual.

The course emphasises your emotional development as a practitioner, together with clinical exploration through critical enquiry. In addition to this, students must be prepared to enter mandatory individual personal therapy for one year of the training.

Music Therapists work within a wide range of clinical settings, individual and group work. They work with people of all ages; from infants and young children through to elderly adults. Music therapy can benefit people with a wide range of difficulties or challenges, including mental health problems, learning disabilities and autism, dementia and neurology, as well as people experiencing serious illness such as cancer or those who have experienced trauma.

Content

The programme aims to encourage a critical and evaluative approach to both theory and practice in music therapy. It is designed to prepare students for work with children and adults with a range of disabilities and illnesses, and placements include work with children and adults in the settings in which Music Therapists commonly work. 

Key areas of study include human development and growth and the clinical context for music therapy, clinical improvisation, observational studies, music therapy theory, clinical case work and supervision, introduction to research and your dissertation. Some of the core teaching will take place with peers from across the Arts and Play Therapies programmes, giving unique opportunities for interdisciplinary learning. Personal development and reflection on this is central throughout the programme.

Clinical work is central to the training. After visits to a variety of workplaces which offer music therapy, you will undertake individual and group work in two contrasting settings over six months, January to June (first placement) and September to February/March (second placement).These clinical placements will provide you with music therapy work experience alongside qualified Music Therapists. You will also participate in an experiential group, which gives you an opportunity to develop your own self-awareness and examine personal and group dynamics through verbal and musical processes. In addition, it is a requirement for you to find and fund personal individual therapy outside the course.

Please read the programme information pack thoroughly before applying to this course which inlcudes full programme details. 

We also offer introductory courses hat provide a useful background to those working in related professions or anyone simply wishing to find out more about the work. No particular level of musical competence is required.

Career options

Music Therapists work within a wide range of clinical settings. They work with people of all ages; from infants and young children through to elderly adults. Music Therapists work within statutory services (such as the NHS, education or social services), within charities and private organisations, and in private practice. To find out more, you can join the British Association for Music Therapy.

Short Courses

We also offer weekend introductory courses, 5 day Summer Schools, and 20 week part time evening Foundation Courses which provide a useful background in related professions. For more information, see our Psychology Short Courses.


Visit the Music Therapy - MA page on the University of Roehampton website for more details!

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