AMTA.Pro - Online Symposium - For Music Therapists, By Music Therapists

Collaboration in Clinical Practice & Research

Collaboration can be a key element for music therapists whether in the clinic, in research, or in education and training. In this AMTA-Pro podcast, our music therapy colleagues Dr. Laura Brown and Dr. Ellary Draper share their insights and experiences in several different aspects of their professional careers. Laura and Ellary give examples of ways collaboration and partnerships helped them in their graduate education, in their research projects, in their work as professors, and in two innovative clinical projects. Laura talks about partnering music therapy and speech-language pathology students in Camp Rock, her inclusive camp for children with ASD. Ellary describes her High School Pop Choirs, collaborative projects to help teachers successfully include students with disabilities in general music classrooms. The podcast speakers take time to discuss the benefits of collaborative partnerships as well as some of the challenges they have encountered over the years.

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MT Respite for Families with Dementia

Every life deserves world class care. Our music therapy colleague Dr. Becky Wellman is part of that mission at the Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health in Nevada where she has developed innovative services providing music therapy for individuals with dementia while at the same time allowing respite time for their family members. In this AMTA-Pro podcast, Becky talks about all aspects of designing and implementing the MT Respite Program, including assessments, session format, adaptations, safety issues, and more. She also talks about the challenges of building trust with the patients, the staff, and the family members. The results of the survey as well as observations by the therapist and caregiver comments indicate the wide-spread positive impact of the program on all involved.

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Tips for Submitting Strong Proposals

Proposals for conference sessions or CMTE sessions at regional or national music therapy conferences go through a blind review process, so everyone starts out on an equal footing. But some proposals are more likely to be chosen than others for specific reasons. In this AMTA-Pro podcast, regional representatives on AMTA’s Continuing Education Committee share numerous practical tips for developing and submitting strong proposals. The podcast speakers discuss considerations when selecting a topic and when writing the title, abstract, learning objectives, and description of a conference session. All music therapists are encouraged to consider sharing their experiences and expertise in a conference session or CMTE session, and this AMTA-Pro podcast gives a strong start to the process whether you are a seasoned pro or just now getting up the courage to write a conference proposal.

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Fascinating MT Pioneers

Three professional musicians led prestigious careers for decades in Europe as opera singers, composers and teachers before moving the United Sates under life-threatening circumstances in WWII. One was a neighbor to  Brahms, one worked with Mahler, and another was a singing porter on the London railway for 15 years. After escaping the Gestapo and coming the the United States, all three continued their productive music careers, and all three were among the first recipients of degrees in music therapy. They lived in different parts of the United States and pioneered music therapy practice with a variety of client populations. You won’t want to miss this riveting AMTA-Pro podcast where our MT-BC colleague Dr. Ted Ficken tells of their multi-faceted careers in composition, performance, teaching, writing, and music therapy, and about the impact of their work on the lives of many in the early 20th century. 

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Potential Harm in Music Therapy?

Have you ever heard music therapy described as “non-invasive”, “non-threatening”, or as a treatment with no side effects? In this AMTA-Pro podcast, our music therapy colleagues Brea Murakami and Daniel Goldschmidt discuss the topic of the potential for harm in music therapy, recognizing it has implications for music therapists in clinical, advocacy, educational training, and research realms. Although the AMTA and CBMT Scope of Practice acknowledge the potential for harm within music therapy practice, definitions of harm and ways of conceptualizing harm are few and far between in music therapy literature. After recognizing the need to acknowledge the potential harm, the podcast speakers talk about the need to understand, monitor, address, and prevent harm. They introduce the Music Therapy and Harm Model (MTHM), which provides a way of conceptualizing sources of harm in a music therapy session, and they discuss the possibilities for more specific research, education, and training about the topic of potential harm in music therapy sessions.

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Addressing Cognitive Skills in Children with ASD

Children on the autism spectrum often have cognitive needs that can be addressed in music therapy. In this AMTA-Pro podcast, Dr. Blythe LaGasse presents current neuroscience research related to individuals on the autism spectrum. She also provides the music therapy clinician with some explanations and clinical ideas for addressing working memory, attention, and executive functioning in children on the autism spectrum.

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Guide to Clinical MT Research

In this AMTA-Pro podcast, speakers Dr. Annie Heiderscheit, Dr. Nancy Jackson, and Dr. Kathy Murphy review the steps necessary for creating a preliminary plan for a clinical research study, including, among other things, (1) exploring clinical interests and looking at different perspectives, (2) determining feasibility, partnerships, collaborators, funding, and logistics of a clinical research project, (3) conducting the literature review, and (4) choosing the appropriate research design for the research question. Based on their own rich experiences in clinical work and in research, the podcast speakers provide examples and insight into navigating the challenges of conducting clinical-based research as well as strategies for overcoming these challenges. In this overview of an interactive session presented at the 2017 AMTA conference, the AMTA-Pro podcast speakers provide the groundwork for podcast listeners to begin the process of planning their own clinical research study.

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Preventive MT in Limited-Resource Communities

Individuals and families in limited-resource communities face real challenges not only in finances but also in opportunity. Insecurity and stress resulting from limitations in food, shelter, health, safety, and other basic needs impact all aspects of a person’s well-being. In this AMTA-Pro podcast, two of our music therapy colleagues, Elizabeth K Schwartz and Dr.Varvara Pasiali, discuss these complex challenges and ways in which music therapists can focus on helping children move away from stress, insecurity, and dysfunction toward trust, belonging, and opportunities. Varvara describes her research and clinical work with high-risk youth in a YWCA afterschool program in North Carolina, and Elizabeth describes her work with children eligible for Head Start services in New York. This AMTA-Pro podcast includes songs and interventions found effective in addressing specific issues these kids face in their daily lives.

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MT in the Community

Music therapy naturally allows individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities and autism of all ages to develop necessary skills for integrating into the community and to maximize their quality of life through living, learning, work, and leisure. The speakers in this AMTA-Pro podcast describe three innovative music therapy programs providing unique opportunities for inclusion and meaningful community engagement for individuals with special needs. Dr. Ellary Draper talks about inclusive pop choirs formed in collaboration between high school choral directors and the University of Alabama Music Therapy Program. These choirs, designed specifically to include students with mild, moderate, and severe disabilities alongside their typical peers, perform regularly in the community and serve as practicing sites for undergraduate music therapy and music education students. Our MT colleague Helen Dolas shares information about the Able ARTS Work, founded in 1982, which provides education and life-skills coaching to children, adolescents and adults with developmental disabilities. Professionals use pioneering, evidence-based therapeutic techniques tailored to meet individual needs and goals of participants at the Creative Health and Wellness Clinic and the Mobile Arts program of Able ARTS Work. Music therapist Grant Hales describes his unique ArtBeat Radio program, a potpourri of short podcasts featuring the thoughts, music, and creativity of adults with disabilities and musicians in the greater LA area. The goal of ArtBeat Radio is to explore the myriad ways in which the resident artists of Able ARTS Work can make their unique voices heard by engaging the ever-expanding virtual world.

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MT in Schools: Laws & Court Decisions

Laws passed by the US Congress and Supreme Court decisions ensure quality educational services for students with disabilities. Recently, the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) and the Supreme Court case, Endrew F. v. Douglas County School District emerged as landmark events significantly impacting special education services. In this AMTA-Pro podcast, Alice-Ann Darrow, Judith Jellison, Mary Adamek overview the recent legislation and court decisions, identify ways to advocate for music therapy services in schools based on the legislative and court actions, and share valuable resources critical for staying informed about updates regarding special education services and music therapy.

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Ethics of Online MT Research

As the nature of research moves toward online resources and methods, music therapists must take time to explore the ethics of online research. Our colleague Nicki Cohen, a member of the AMTA Research Committee, takes time in this AMTA-Pro podcast to share insights and considerations related to ethics and music therapy research. Using specific examples, Nicki discusses basic ethical principles, a brief history of unethical landmark research which resulted in legislation, and the advantages and disadvantages of online research methods. She overviews types of online research methods as well as viable software options for online interview and online surveys. As Nicki says in the podcast, ethics in online music therapy research is simply a matter of “being honest and respectful to the participants and being honest and respectful when reporting the results of your research.” This AMTA-Pro podcast provides practical guidelines for doing just that.

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Moving Forward with MTP

Music Therapy Perspectives, AMTA’s peer reviewed journal speaking to clinical practice, was launched in the 1980’s and is moving forward at a dizzying pace. In this AMTA-Pro podcast, MTP’s incoming Editor-in-Chief, Dr. Laura Beer along with Associate Editors Dr. Jennifer Jones and Dr. Noah Potvin discuss AMTA’s partnership with Oxford University Press, highlighting a variety of avenues for music therapists and the broader audience to access the content of MTP in new and unique ways. The editorial team encourages clinicians, researchers, and even students to write and submit articles. The MTP Mentorship service is available to help MT-BCs craft the beginning of an idea into an article to share with other clinicians. MTP’s new Clinical Portraits section provides a forum for articles about exploratory research, emerging treatment practices and protocols, unique client populations, and new strategies for teaching or supervising students and interns. Listeners of this AMTA-Pro podcast also learn about a variety of online platforms – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube blogs, and virtual issues – designed to increase dissemination of MTP content, encourage interaction with researchers and clinicians, and, ultimately, further the practice of music therapy.

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AMTA-Pro is filled to the brim with a wealth of podcasts featuring your colleagues sharing reflections, strategies, insider tips, and details about every aspect of music therapy. Don't miss even one of several dozen AMTA-Pro podcasts on a wide variety of topics, including:
+ Music therapy programs, clinical applications, and research in a broad range of areas such as Alzheimer's disease, eating disorders, stroke rehab, inpatient mental health, early childhood behavior issues, medical settings, wellness, NICU, wound care, hospice, and more.
+ Job Solutions, reimbursement, networking, and thriving in any economy.
+ Interviews with music therapy professionals, students, and interns, as well as special guests.
+ Podcasts capturing special AMTA events, conference speakers, and memorial tributes.


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