Julie Cassity, clinical supervisor
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.
How is Music Therapy Used?
Music Therapy uses music and music related strategies, presented by a qualified music therapist, to assist or motivate a person towards specific non-musical goals. Music therapists use their training as musicians and clinicians to bring about changes in cognitive, physical, communication, social, employment, and emotional skills.
Who Benefits from Music Therapy?
Children, adolescents, adults, and the elderly with mental health needs, developmental and learning disabilities, aging related conditions, substance abuse problems, brain injuries, physical disabilities, etc.
Parent Responses to Music Therapy
“Music seems to be one of the major things that has helped my child reach life goals as well as educational goals. With the music therapy she seems to learn faster, easier, and has fun doing so. Music therapy had such a major impact on her and her ability to grow and learn!”
“Music therapy has taken functional life skills my son needs and put them to music, which has made therapy a fun place to come for him.”
“Over the past several years, our son, Cameron, has participated in music therapy. He has found success in working on his IEP goals and other objectives through music. The therapists have played an integral role in his development. Cameron is motivated and thoroughly enjoys his music therapy sessions. I have been extremely impressed with the quality of this program and the progress he has made through music therapy.”
-C.M., mother & educator
Techniques Used in Music Therapy
Music therapy uses interactive therapeutic interventions to address specific needs of each client. These activities, along with the therapist-client relationship, help the client reach the goals established in the treatment plan.
Common music therapy interventions include
• Active music making
• Instrument exploration
• Musical performance
• Music-based discussion
• Progressive muscle relaxation
• Life review/reminiscence
• Movement to music
About the Program
The 6,183 square-foot Drury University Center for Music Therapy and Wellness is an on-campus music therapy clinic. Outstanding features of this clinic include both large and small activity rooms with adjoining observation rooms. The clinical staff is comprised of two full-time board certified music therapists who provide client services in addition to student supervision. A branch of Drury Center located in Monett, Missouri, serves residents of Lawrence and Barry Counties. Each session is led by a board-certified music therapist (MT-BC). A music therapist has completed a six-month internship, earned at least a bachelor’s degree in music therapy and passed the national board certification exam in order to become an MT-BC.
Sessions at Drury University may also include student music therapists who are working on clinical hours towards completing their bachelor’s degree. Students are accompanied by an MT-BC in each session. The clinic serves a growing number and variety of clients both on and off campus including:
• Children with developmental disabilities and learning disabilities
• Hospice clients
• Persons with behavioral health needs
• Substance abuse clients
Goals of Music Therapy
• Improve cognitive and academic skills
• Improve fine and gross motor skills
• Improve receptive and expressive communication skills
• Improve emotional skills
• Improve social skills
• Promote stress and anxiety reduction
• Coping with end of life
• Elevate mood