The program helps students develop competence for entry into the music therapy profession. The interdisciplinary curriculum emphasizes understanding of human behavior, musical and otherwise. It includes extensive work in music, behavioral science, biological science, and liberal arts, in addition to specific academic, clinical, and research studies in music therapy.
Music Therapy Program
The undergraduate music therapy program provides full preparation for entry into the profession. It culminates in the degree of Bachelor of Music with a major in music therapy. Graduates are prepared for general music therapy practice in a variety of settings, which may include, but are not limited to hospitals, schools, community health programs, wellness centers, and private and group settings across the age span. The KU music therapy program is approved by the American Music Therapy Association. Individuals who complete the program are eligible to take the national music therapy board certification examination. The music therapy major does not lead to licensure to teach music in public schools.
Students admitted to the music therapy program will be assigned an appropriate academic faculty advisor to work with the student throughout their academic career. Students are expected to consult with their advisor each semester to plan enrollment for the next semester. The advisor is available to help, to suggest ways to avoid course conflicts, to recommend courses particularly beneficial for various emphases, and to offer career guidance. The responsibility for taking appropriate courses and for meeting other requirements rests upon the student. Information regarding all requirements is in writing and available to students. Lack of knowledge of any requirement does not free the student from meeting that requirement. All students must sign up for a graduation check with the School of Music Student Services Office in 450 Murphy Hall one year prior to their graduation date.
Regardless of applied performance medium, each entering student should be able to sing independently, in tune, and with acceptable tone quality. Functional keyboard skills (accompanying, playing by ear, improvising, and transposing) are helpful. Experience working with others is also beneficial as well. Well-developed interpersonal skills are an asset.
Students are strongly encouraged to read the Music Therapy Undergraduate Program Handbook, which is available on the School of Music website and from the Student Services Office, 450 Murphy Hall, and provides detailed procedures, suggestions, and specifications.
Students must meet or exceed the School of Music academic admission requirements and successfully complete a major performance medium audition to be admitted. Students should declare the B.M. in music therapy as the major on the KU application for admission. Music therapy majors are in plan MTP-BM in the School of Music.
Students pursuing the B.M. in music therapy degree should apply for admission to the professional sequence upon completion of the second semester of the sophomore year with 50 or more KU hours. Transfer students with more than 45 hours of transfer credit must complete this application the first semester of classes at KU. Students may not enroll in courses in the professional sequence before formal approval by the director of music therapy. Music therapy majors who have been admitted to the professional sequence are in plan MTPPS-BM in the School of Music.
Students must be admitted to the music therapy professional sequence to enroll in upper-division music therapy courses. See the Music Therapy Undergraduate Program Handbook for details.
Candidates are reviewed for admission periodically. No student may be admitted to the professional sequence for a semester during which he or she will be on academic probation. The application form for music therapy professional sequence admission is distributed to students prior to their time to apply. Information about the application process may be found on the KU School of Music website.
Instrumental Ensemble Policy
In order to remain enrolled in studio instruction (lessons), all undergraduate (B.A., B.M., and B.M.E.) and M.M. students who enroll in any level of studio instruction (including nonmajor levels) in band and orchestral instruments must audition for and perform as assigned in a major instrumental ensemble1 each semester in which they are enrolled. For music majors, 1 ensemble taken for credit each semester is required for graduation. Exceptions to this policy are allowed on a case-by-case basis and only by the ensemble conductor in consultation with the faculty member in the studio area or the faculty advisor in music therapy as appropriate.
Undergraduate Admission to the School of Music
First-year students should enter the school directly. Students may transfer to the school from other institutions or from other KU schools if they have at least a 2.75 GPA (on a 4.0 scale) and are eligible to return to the college or university last attended in addition to completing a successful audition. Other students can be admitted only with the permission of the dean. Send applications to the Office of Admissions. Visit the Office of International Admissions for information about international admissions.
Students who wish to major in music must audition. All music students academically approved for admission to the School of Music are admitted contingent upon demonstration by audition of satisfactory level proficiency in their areas of applied music. Music audition and application information is available on the School of Music website. There is a limit of two times a prospective student may request an audition for entrance into one of the School's undergraduate degree programs. The second request must be within 12 months of the first and may be as early as 1 month following the first audition. The limitation also applies to students within the School auditioning from one program into another.
Students may transfer to the school from other institutions or from other KU schools if they have at least a 2.75 GPA (on a 4.0 scale), are eligible to return to the college or university last attended, and complete a successful audition. Only grades of C or higher are accepted in transfer credit toward degrees offered by the School of Music. Students who wish to transfer performance credit from another institution toward any music degree at KU must validate this credit by audition. Music audition and application information is available on the School of Music website. There is a limit of two times a prospective student may request an audition for entrance into one of the School's undergraduate degree programs. The second request must be within 12 months of the first and may be as early as 1 month following the first audition. The limitation also applies to students within the School auditioning from one program into another.
Keyboard Skills Placement Examination:
If a student has a background in piano playing, they may choose to take one or more Piano Quiz-Out tests. Successfully passing a Quiz-Out will exempt a student from having to take a particular class in the PIAN sequence (PIAN 144, PIAN 148, PIAN 284, PIAN 288, and PIAN 310). Students should check with their advisor about how this will impact their particular degree requirements.
Freshmen and transfer students with no previous piano study experience should enroll in PIAN 144. No examination or permission number is necessary. Students should check with their advisor about their particular degree requirements.
More information about the Keyboard Skills Placement Examination including deadlines is available on the School of Music website.
Requirements for the B.M. with a Major in Music Therapy
The degree requires a minimum of 120 semester hours of credit (including 45 at the Junior/Senior 300+ level) appropriately distributed among general studies, the major, and supporting music areas and behavioral sciences. With careful planning, the program can be completed in about 4½ years. Four academic years of study and clinical work on campus are followed by a full-time, 6-month internship in an approved clinical institution.
The degree requires at least a 3.00 cumulative grade-point average in all course work and a minimum of 3.00 in all MEMT courses. All music therapy majors must demonstrate proficiency in the major applied performance medium and in other performance areas.
All students must demonstrate functional vocal skills and ability to perform accompaniments on a portable chordal instrument, such as accordion, autoharp, guitar, or electric piano. These skills are assessed periodically throughout the program.
General Education Requirements (31 hours)
Performance Requirements (28-31 hours)
|Code ||Title ||Hours |
|Elementary Keyboard Skills I|
|Elementary Keyboard Skills II|
|Intermediate Keyboard Skills I|
|Intermediate Keyboard Skills II|
|Advanced Keyboard Skills|
|MEMT 115||Performance Media: Percussion||1|
|MEMT 119||Performance Media: Guitar||1|
|MEMT 117||Performance Media: Voice||1|
|or MEMT 120|| Vocal Performance in English|
|MEMT 246||Fundamentals of Conducting||1|
|MEMT 338||Rehearsal/Conducting Clinic: Non-traditional Ensemble||1|
Musicianship and Music Therapy Requirements (61 hours)
Music Therapy 4.5 Year Plan
Students with no prior piano experience should take the keyboard skills sequence (PIAN 144 - PIAN 288). Demonstration of skills is needed to pass/test out of PIAN 144 - PIAN 288. Students whose major performance medium is piano or organ should take PIAN 310 after completing two semesters of music theory (this course is only taken once in the fall term of the sophomore year).
- F = Fall only
- S = Spring only
- B = Both semesters
- Students must successfully complete Pre-Clinical Musicianship Assessment parts A and B before entering the Clinical Techniques Courses. These assessments are components of the Final Examinations for MEMT 150 and 196 respectively.
Professional Sequence Admission Requirements
Students should apply for admission to the Professional Sequence as early as possible and must be admitted before beginning the first semester of the junior year. Admission requirements:
- Cumulative grade-point average of 3.00 or higher.
- Grade-point average of 3.00 or higher in MEMT courses.
- A grade of C or higher in each of the following courses:
|MEMT 150||Introduction to Music Therapy||3|
|MEMT 196||Group Leadership Skills in Music Therapy||2|
|MEMT 250||Human Musical Learning and Development||2|
|MEMT 251||Clinical Techniques for Children||3|
|MEMT 296||Clinical Techniques for Adults||3|
- At least 50 hours of college credit.
- A signed applied music recommendation form verifying successful completion of the first semester of sophomore-level lessons.
- Successful completion of the application form.
- Students must successfully complete Clinical Practicum Musicianship Assessment before entering their second MEMT 396 Clinical Practicum. This assessment is addressed across MEMT 251 and 296.
- Students must apply for their internship 1 year in advance of completion of academic work. Check the Music Therapy undergraduate handbook for information on this procedure. Students must complete the Internship Eligibility Application during MEMT 586.
- Students must successfully complete the Internship Pre-Assessment as part of MEMT 586 and before entering their final MEMT 396 Clinical Practicum.
All MEMT professional courses as noted on the undergraduate music therapy degree requirement check sheet must be completed with a C or higher prior to beginning internship.
Students must pass all Clinical Musicianship and Internship Assessments and Musicianship Portfolio.
Students must request a graduation check from the School of Music Student Services Office approximately 1 year before the estimated internship date. Graduation checks before that time should occur with the student’s MEMT advisor.
Upon acceptance to an internship site students must complete and turn in the Music Therapy Internship Information sheet to the Student Services office.
Students must do the following in the final semester before leaving for internship:
review degree requirement check sheet to see that they have met all graduation requirements
submit an application for graduation online through Enroll and Pay
successfully complete the major applied instrument (422 Lessons with Senior Recital) including the senior half-recital