What is a Music Therapist?

A music therapist is a graduate of a music therapy degree training program approved by the Canadian Association for Music Therapists (CAMT).

With a minimum Bachelor of Music Therapy degree, music therapists have extensive training in music, counseling and psychology, health conditions of childhood/aging, research practices and creative arts therapies. Music therapists are proficient in voice, guitar and piano. Program requirements include supervised clinical experience, practicums and a 1000 hour internship followed by accreditation through CAMT.

Music therapists must abide by the CAMT Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice, and report annual continuing education credits. Music therapists may pursue further specialization in the Helen Bonny method of Guided Imagery & Music (FAMI), Neurological Music Therapy (NMT), Neonatal Intensive Care Unit Music Therapy (NICUMT), Environmental Music Therapy (EMT), and/or a Master’s Degree in Music Therapy (MMT). The Federation of Associations for Counselling Therapists in British Columbia represent music therapists in BC.

What do Music Therapists do?

Treatment Planning – including setting of non-musical goals, objectives & interventions

Assessment – of clients physical, cognitive, emotional and spiritual health; willingness and ability to participate in interventions

Evaluation – of effectiveness of treatment plan, including charting, care review, re-assessment and other documentation

Session Planning/Preparation – can include research, song learning, recording music/editing, and more

Team Liaising – can include project collaboration, consultation, attending meetings

Where do Music Therapists Work?

Music therapists work in a number of settings, including but not limited to: hospitals, hospices, nursing/care homes, schools, correctional facilities, counseling practices, community agencies, clients’ homes and in private practice.