Music Therapy Internship
Entry-level Requirements

Entry-level Requirements

This internship is available to students who have completed undergraduate coursework at an American Music Therapy Association (AMTA)-approved school and are cleared to begin internship by their academic director. The student will need to have experiences at the undergraduate / graduate (basic) level so that these competencies (listed below) can be practiced, nurtured, fostered and matured: (From the AMTA competencies —Operational definitions of Competency at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, adapted from Landaker, M.J., 2007.) An audition and interview is required to evaluate the student on these competencies. Students are not expected to be adept in every area of the following: 

Music Foundations

Demonstrates the following functional abilities on the keyboard/piano:

  • Accompany self and groups proficiently.
  • Play basic chord progressions (I-IV-V-I) in several keys.
  • Sight-read simple compositions and song accompaniments.

Demonstrates the following functional abilities on the guitar:

  • Accompany self and groups proficiently.
  • Employ simple strumming and finger picking techniques.
  • Tune guitar using standard and other tunings.

Demonstrates the following functional abilities using the voice:

  • Lead group singing by voice.
  • Communicate vocally with adequate volume (loudness).

Demonstrates the following functional abilities using hand percussion instruments/drum set:

  • Accompany self and groups proficiently.
  • Utilize basic techniques on several standard and ethnic instruments.

Demonstrates ability to improvise on all aforementioned instruments as well as new instruments that will impact clinical outcomes:

  • Improvise on percussion instruments.
  • Develop original melodies, simple accompaniments, and short pieces extemporaneously in a variety of moods and styles, vocally and instrumentally.

Principles of Therapeutic Relationships and Therapy

  • Demonstrate basic knowledge of the potentials, limitations, and problems of exceptional individuals.
  • Demonstrate basic knowledge of the causes and symptoms of major exceptionalities, and basic terminology used in diagnosis and classification.
  • Demonstrate basic knowledge of typical and atypical human systems and development (e.g. anatomical, physiological, psychological, social.)
  • Demonstrate basic knowledge of the dynamics and processes of a therapist-patient relationship.
  • Demonstrate basic knowledge of the dynamics and processes of therapy groups.
  • Recognize the impact of one's own feelings, attitudes, and actions on the patient and the therapy process.
  • Use oneself effectively in the therapist role in both individual and group therapy, e.g. appropriate self-disclosure, authenticity, empathy, etc. toward affecting desired behavioral outcomes.
  • Demonstrate awareness of one’s cultural heritage and socio-economic background and how these influence the perception of the therapeutic process.

Music Therapy Skills

  • Demonstrate basic knowledge of existing music therapy methods, techniques, materials, and equipment with their appropriate applications.
  • Demonstrate basic knowledge of the purpose, intent, and function of music therapy for various patient populations.
  • Demonstrate basic knowledge of the use of current technologies in music therapy assessment, treatment, and evaluation.
  • Communicate assessment findings and recommendations in written and verbal forms.
  • Observe and record accurately the patient’s responses to assessment.
  • Identify the patient’s therapeutic needs through an analysis and interpretation of music therapy and related assessment data.
  • Select or create music therapy experiences that meet the patient’s objectives.
  • Formulate goals and objectives for individuals and group therapy based upon
    assessment findings.
  • Coordinate treatment plan with other professionals.

 (To be demonstrated throughout the second half of the internship.)

  • Demonstrates the ability to adapt and use any and every approach to best meet the needs of each individual patient and family we serve.
  • Create a physical environment (e.g. arrangement of space, furniture, equipment, and instruments) that is conducive to effective therapy.
  • Recognize significant changes and patterns in the patient's response to therapy.
  • Design and implement methods for evaluating and measuring patient progress and the effectiveness of therapeutic strategies.
Music therapy deals with the unique issues that each patient and family presents.