Con espressivo : the design and development of a music therapy syllabus and assessment in special education
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This thesis presents a Music Therapy Syllabus and Assessment designed for the special education context. The research process which influenced the development is outlined. Details are provided of the research steps that include: pilot and extended music therapy interventions, educator questionnaire, music therapist survey and interviews, application of the Assessment and peer review. The music therapist survey included music therapists (n=40) from Australia and the United Kingdom working in the special education context. Ninety percent of surveyed therapists acknowledge applying six or more of the 10 Board of Studies Life Skills Music Education Outcomes (Board of Studies, 2003). These results support the inclusion of Board of Studies Education Outcomes alongside music therapy outcomes in the Music Therapy Syllabus and Assessment. The Music Therapy Syllabus and Assessment include the categories of: communication, initiation, response, movement, social interaction, emotional expression, listening and decision-making. The Music Therapy Syllabus and Assessment seek to validate music therapy in the special education setting by situating music therapy in the education context. The Music Therapy Syllabus and Assessment provide a resource for programming, reporting and linking music therapy to the education curriculum. The Music Therapy Assessment supplies a practical tool that measures activity within sessions which enables accountability within the education context. The inclusion of music therapy and Board of Studies Education Outcomes is combined to produce a Music Therapy Syllabus and Assessment that is accessible to both educators and therapists. This thesis presents the design of the Music Therapy Syllabus and Assessment and outlines the influence of research steps on its development.
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