Music Therapy Major

Make a difference through music!

This degree is designed for students who wish to be employed as music therapists in a variety of clinical settings. Upon successful completion of the requirements for this degree, students are eligible to take the exam given by the Certification Board for Music Therapists. When students pass this exam, they will be granted the title Music Therapist — Board Certified (MT-BC).

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. Music therapy students receive practical training experience at the Drury University Center for Music Therapy & Wellness.  

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.

A music therapy student plays the guitar

Program Requirements

Bachelor of Music Therapy students should pass all coursework required for the major with a C or better. Students who fail to pass courses required for the major with a C or better after two attempts will no longer be allowed to continue in the major.

All students interested in majoring in music must perform and pass an audition before the music faculty. Students who fail to pass this audition after two attempts will not be allowed to continue as a music major. The audition must be completed before the end of their first semester as a music major.

After four semesters of study in music, all music majors must pass a sophomore review which includes performing their applied major jury before the music faculty. If the student fails this review, they will no longer be allowed to continue as a music major. Details of the sophomore review can be found in the Music Major Handbook available in the music office or online.

All prerequisites must be completed prior to enrollment in the following courses.

The bachelor of music therapy major requires a minimum of 90 credit hours.

MTHP 101: Field Studies I
MTHP 102: Music Therapy Orientation and Accountability
MTHP 130: Beginning Class Guitar
MTHP 131: Intermediate Class Guitar
MTHP 200: Psychology of Music
MTHP 201: Field Studies II
MTHP 202: Medical Music Therapy
MTHP 301: Field Studies III
MTHP 310: Recreational Music
MTHP 340: Music Therapy in Developmental and Behavioral Health
MTHP 380, 480 Music Therapy Internship
MTHP 401: Field Studies IV
MTHP 430: Behavior Measurement and Research
MTHP 475: Music Therapy Capstone
MUSC 105: Recital Attendance (8 semesters, or every semester registered as a music major)
MUSC 117: Music Theory I
MUSC 118: Music Theory II
MUSC 120:* Voice Class
MUSC 121: Ear Training and Sight Singing I
MUSC 122: Ear Training and Sight Singing II
MUSC 211: Sophomore Review
MUSC 217: Music Theory III
MUSC 218: Music Theory IV
MUSC 219: Ear Training and Sight Singing III
MUSC 220: Ear Training and Sight Singing IV
MUSC 321: History of Music I
MUSC 322: History of Music II
MUSC 356: Conducting

Choose one course from the following:
MUSC 116: History of American Pop Music
MUSC 221: African-American Music

MUSC 224: Jazz History

Applied Piano (1 hr)
Ensembles (8 hrs)
Major Instrument (to Level 4)
Music Therapy Guitar Proficiency
Music Therapy Piano Proficiency

Psychology courses required:
PSYC 101: Introduction to Psychology
PSYC 230: Life Span Development
PSYC 334: Abnormal Psychology

Biology course required:
BIOL 206: Human Physiology

*Applied Voice will fulfill the Voice Class requirement

Equivalency In Music Therapy

Equivalency students will be students who already have a bachelor’s degree in music and who will be seeking board certification without getting another bachelor’s degree. Such students will be required to take coursework equivalent to that required for the music therapy degree. The specific coursework taken will be determined in much the same manner as for transfer students. The music therapy program director will evaluate the transcripts of equivalency students and outline any transfer credits accepted. The music therapy program director will verify that all coursework transferred is equivalent to that offered by Drury University.

The music therapy program director then will outline in advance the coursework the equivalency student is required to take. Courses on the student’s transcript plus courses the student is required to take must meet the curricular standards of Drury and AMTA in addition to the requirements of the Certification Board for Music Therapists. As with transfer students, the equivalency student must demonstrate all music proficiency examination requirements required of music therapy students at Drury. The equivalency program will require a minimum of two semesters in residence at Drury plus internship.

Each student majoring in music is expected to:  

  1. Complete the prescribed course of study for the particular degree.
  2. Complete at least eight semesters of an ensemble in a principal instrument.
  3. Complete at least eight semesters (or every semester registered as a music major, excluding semesters enrolled in internship or student teaching) of Drury Singers, Drury Chorale, Wind Symphony or Orchestra.
  4. Register for MUSC 105 each semester and attend a minimum of 10 concerts or recitals during the semester including all faculty recitals, senior recitals, and all “Guest Artist Series” concerts.
  5. Pass the piano proficiency examination.
  6. Achieve the required applied music level for the major. Information concerning applied music levels can be obtained in the music major handbook.
  7. Maintain a cumulative grade point average of 2.5. If a student’s GPA falls below 2.5, the student will have one semester to re-achieve the 2.5. Failure to do so can result in removal from the major.

Additional information and requirements are available in the music major handbook available in the music office or online.

Drury University Music Therapy Classroom

Benefits of Music Therapy & Geriatric Care

Mommy and Me: Developmental Music Class