Music Therapy Degrees in California
Music therapy is a field of healthcare that utilizes music to treat or improve physical, mental and emotional wellbeing. It has become an evidence-based profession that can benefit those suffering from various disabilities, illnesses and mental health conditions.
Music therapy is an emerging field that uses music to aid healing, reduce stress, improve communication and foster positive emotional growth in both children and adults alike. Music therapists work in hospitals, schools and other settings providing individual or group sessions to patients and their families.
California offers several colleges and universities that offer music therapy degrees. These programs typically last four years and require 1200 hours of clinical experience.
These colleges provide degrees in music therapy and therapeutic counseling. You can earn your bachelor’s, master’s or doctorate in this career field.
The bachelor’s degree program includes courses in music therapy and humanities, as well as psychology, biology and other sciences. These lessons are designed to build professional competencies as defined by the American Music Therapy Association (AMTA) and prepare students for taking their national board certification exam.
Graduates may pursue careers in a range of settings, such as community mental health agencies, schools, day care facilities, nursing homes and rehabilitation facilities. They may also engage in private practice.
Music therapists may conduct research in the fields of music medicine or music psychotherapy, and they have the opportunity to work with clients from varying backgrounds and abilities. Furthermore, they may supervise other music therapists as well as teach at either undergraduate or graduate levels.
A master’s degree in music therapy or a related field can enhance clinical skills and leadership capabilities. These programs typically feature advanced coursework on research, theory and practice as well as specialized fields like supervision, college teaching or administration.
During their graduate studies, music therapists gain a strong foundation in medical and psychiatric science as well as advanced techniques and procedures in music therapy. Furthermore, they develop advanced abilities with technology-based tools related to music composition.
These programs can be completed full or part time. In addition to classroom learning, therapists usually complete a clinical internship where they work with real patients under the supervision of an experienced therapist.
The therapist’s role is to assist their client in discovering themselves, identify and meet specific treatment goals, and promote music as an integral component of therapeutic practice. Furthermore, they create a safe, collaborative atmosphere so clients can engage in therapy sessions in whatever way works best for them.
UCLA Health’s music therapists use music to help patients enhance their quality of life and speed recovery from illness, injury or hospitalization. They are part of a patient’s multidisciplinary care team, working alongside doctors, nurses, social workers, child life specialists and other healthcare professionals to offer customized solutions tailored to each client’s individual needs.