Foundation Course in Music Therapy 2020

October 2020

Duration   20 weeks
Pattern of Delivery   18 x two hour evening classes plus two Saturdays
Start Date   24 October 2020
End Date 20 March 2021
Course Fee   £1150

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Course Outline

The course will provide an overview of music therapy practice in the UK and follow the psychodynamic model as taught on the Roehampton University MA training. Classes will comprise interactive seminars on various aspects of practice and theory (1 – 1&1/4 hours), including video material, followed by workshop/experiential sessions. The workshop segment will introduce the elements of clinical improvisation, whilst the experiential portion will provide a direct experience of group music therapy, the balance between these two elements shifting to the experiential as the course progresses. Participants will be encouraged to keep a personal diary of the course, with particular emphasis on their psychological process in and via the experiential sessions. Reading will be suggested, whilst hand-out essential reading will be provided that anticipates the following week’s seminar topic. A programme of experiential workshops led by the course facilitators and seminars given by visiting Music Therapists from a wide.

A programme of experiential workshops led by the course facilitiators and seminars given by visiting Music Therapists from a wide range of fields.One full-day Induction (Saturday) and introductory workshop to begin the course to be held un October 2020 with weekly evening classes to follow; finishing with a full Plenary Day to close in March 2021. 

You will need to complete 80% of the course and the assessment process in order to recieve an attendance certificate.

Please note that completion of the Music Therapy Foundation course does not guarantee a place on the MA Music Therapy programme at Roehampton University.

Suggested Reading List

The suggested reading list is available here.

Course timetable and dates

This timetable is provisional - dates and times may be subject to change.

Date Time Title
Introduction to the course
24 October 1000-1630 Personal introductions and overview of the course. An initial look at some definitions of music therapy with some video illustrations of music therapists’ range of work.

Introduction of BOUNDARIES and the idea of a journey
Introducing the idea of PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT


Experiential improvisations to explore these topics
Workshop 1 – 3
Getting to know each other
28 October 1900-2100 Developing the therapist
1. Personal qualities imagination, intuition, intellect
Self-reflective stance
Observation and listening skills
Introducing the Reflective journal
2. The subjective experience of sound, silence and music. Meaning and self-expression in music, with an emphasis on improvisation and free play.

Developing the musician
The therapist’s toolkit. How we use our own music in our work.
3. Creative use of percussion drawing on musical elements, timbre, texture, etc.
Composing for groups
Improvisation and 'attuning'
Analysing music metaphorically
4 November 1900-2100
11 November 1900-2100
Workshop 4 – 9
Key concepts: building relationships, using ourselves, developing trust
18 November 1900-2100 Introducing the theoretical basis of psychodynamic music therapy
4. The unconscious
5. Secure base, (Bowlby)
6. Reflections on the mother- infant model
Communicating without words – further exploration of the first relationship (Bion) Affect Attunement (Stern)
7. Words, music and free play(Winnicott)
8. Containment.
9. Transference and Counter-transference
25 November 1900-2100
2 December 1900-2100
9 December    1900-2100
16 December 1900-2100
13 January 1900-2100
Workshop 10 – 18
Client groups, Clinical settings and Group Work
20 January 1900-2100 10. Learning Disabilities. The significance of Secondary Impairment.
11. Working with children with LD
12. Working with Adults with LD
13. Autism across the age groups.
14. Mental health in adolescents
15. Mental Health in adults
16. Related Clinical Fields: Palliative Care, Head Injury etc.
17. Principles of Groupwork
18. Groups in different settings
27 January 1900-2100
3 February 1900-2100
10 February 1900-2100
17 February 1900-2100
24 February 1900-2100
3 March 1900-2100
10 March 1900-2100
17 March 1900-2100
Endings – saying goodbye
20 March 1000-1630 Revisiting development of the therapist
The role of personal development in the life of a therapist: personal therapy, supervision, CPD and self-help. The professional/personal selves of the music therapist.

Taking Risks, New Directions
Reflections from personal journals.

Looking Ahead
Overview of the trainings in the UK: theoretical differences.
Preparing an application for MA

Summing Up
Group work Pieces /Performances
An opportunity for final questions and discussion
Feedback & Reflections