University of Georgia – Music Therapy Program
The University of Georgia offers both Bachelor’s and Master’s degree programs in music therapy, providing the necessary coursework to become a licensed music therapist. Additionally, this curriculum includes internship and practicum experiences across many health and educational settings.
FSU has earned a stellar reputation for providing an excellent education in music therapy, with graduates enjoying 100% placement rates. Furthermore, the music therapy department is integrated within FSU’s robust classical music program, providing exceptional experiential learning opportunities.
Students in both bachelor’s and graduate programs learn from each other, providing them with a strong foundation in the profession while benefiting from the expertise of their peers. The program boasts an outstanding core music education, strong clinical connections to the medical community, as well as connections with Miami University’s world-renowned Frost School of Music that provide students with an advanced understanding of music therapy practice.
Music has long been used as a healing force for ailments. From I Samuel’s Israelites to modern-day trauma survivors, songs have served to help patients process and heal their emotions. Studies have even demonstrated that using music during grief and bereavement can reduce feelings of loss and emptiness, encouraging people to reflect on the past and find new ways of managing their losses.
Researchers have observed that music can have a calming effect on the brain, especially when enjoyed. When we hear music we enjoy, the reward network of our brain is activated which creates new connections which promote neuroplasticity – or adaptability – within our neural pathways.
The University of Georgia’s music therapy program has been accredited by the American Association for Music Therapy since 1919, and its focus on research and practice has enabled numerous clinical applications and methods in music therapy.
One such area is improvisation, a type of musical activity that encourages clients to express themselves by making up or altering their music. This can foster self-expression, build intimacy, and enhance cognitive skills.
Furthermore, improvisation has proven beneficial for clients with physical and cognitive difficulties such as Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease. It has been known to reduce pain, promote movement, ease stress and anxiety.
Improvisation can also be applied in group therapy settings, where groups come together to create music that has meaning for them. This type of treatment could be beneficial for treating anxiety, PTSD, and depression.
This approach can be particularly helpful for adolescents, who may find traditional therapy approaches ineffective or unsafe. Additionally, it has applications with pregnant women experiencing emotional or social concerns as well as infants and toddlers.
As a graduate student, you will gain invaluable experience within the hospital setting, developing skills necessary for providing safe and effective care to children and adults alike. Through internship and practicum experiences in the field, as well as developing your professional network and honing services to clients’ needs, the program provides invaluable opportunities.