Music Therapy MMT

Center for the Performing and Cinematic Arts / BOYER COLLEGE OF MUSIC AND DANCE

Learn more about the Master of Music Therapy.

About the Program

The MMT degree program in Music Therapy is designed to provide professional music therapists with advanced clinical training, supported by studies in research, theory and ethics. The curriculum focuses on two areas: Music Medicine and Music Psychotherapy. A broad range of clinical populations, orientations, practices and research paradigms is presented, and opportunities for self-directed learning are provided through independent study projects. Emphasis is given to integrating professional and personal development through self-experiences in Music Therapy. The program in Music Therapy is led by four world-renowned music therapists.

Time Limit for Degree Completion: 6 years

Campus Location: Main, although students may fulfill some credits at TUCC and through online classes

Full-Time/Part-Time Status: The degree program can be completed on a full- or part-time basis.

Accreditation: The degree program is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music (NASM) and approved by the American Music Therapy Association (AMTA).

Areas of Specialization: The MMT in Music Therapy provides two tracks of advanced study, with a variety of course offerings in each track:

  • The Music Medicine Track provides didactic and experiential training in how music and the client-therapist relationship are used to facilitate mind-body communication and health.
  • The Music Psychotherapy Track provides didactic and experiential training in how music and the client-therapist relationship are used to promote emotional and interpersonal growth.

Coursework is designed to give students in-depth knowledge of creative, receptive, recreative and verbal methods of Music Therapy; the ability to utilize and integrate these methods within medical and psychotherapeutic settings and with a broad range of clientele; the ability to apply theory and research to practice; and an understanding of ethical issues in practice and research. In order to relate theory, research and practice, all courses involve extensive readings along with experiential training in their clinical applications. Additional requirements are a final project and courses on both quantitative and qualitative approaches to research. The experiential components of the program are designed to sensitize students to the effects of their own personality on the client, the music, and the therapy process, while also identifying ethical issues indigenous to music therapy practice. Various theoretical orientations are presented for medical and psychotherapeutic areas of practice.

Job Prospects: Graduates typically find employment in a variety of areas, including community mental health agencies, day care facilities, educational institutions, general and psychiatric hospitals, nursing homes, rehabilitation centers, and private practice. Graduates may combine clinical work with research in the above areas of practice. The program also provides preparation for doctoral study in Music Therapy and related disciplines.

Licensure/Certification: Board Certification as a Music Therapist demonstrates that you have completed comprehensive competency testing based on your education and clinical training and that you have met an objective standard that ensures you are prepared to practice music therapy. Certification is required to practice as a music therapist in the following states: California, Connecticut, Georgia, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, Rhode Island, Utah, Virginia, and Wisconsin. The Certification Board of Music Therapists administers an examination that students must pass in order to become certified. Temple University’s Master of Music in Music Therapy program, accredited by the American Music Therapy Association (AMTA), meets the educational requirements to sit for the certification examination. Students must also complete a clinical internship following graduation before sitting for the certification examination. For more information, visit

Non-Matriculated Student Policy: Professionals who wish to enroll in specific courses for continuing education may take courses with departmental approval. The Graduate School permits up to 9 credits of graduate coursework taken at Temple University as a non-matriculated student to be applied to a graduate degree.

Financing Opportunities: Boyer College of Music and Dance offers a number of assistantships and academic internships to matriculated graduate students. Full awards carry a cash stipend plus full tuition remission for the Fall and Spring terms. Partial awards also are available in values of 1/4 or 1/2 of a full award. Duties for assistantships and internships vary, but typically include teaching, tutoring, classroom assistance, research, artistic performance, and/or direct service related to academic programs. Assistantship and internship awards are made only in the Fall term for up to two terms: Fall and Spring. Awards may be renewed on an annual basis (typically up to one additional year for master's students and up to three years for doctoral students) based on departmental needs as well as satisfactory academic and musical progress by the recipient.

Admission Requirements and Deadlines

Application Deadline:

Fall: February 1

Applications are processed as they arrive up to the deadline date.

APPLY ONLINE to this graduate program.

Letters of Reference:
Number Required: 2

From Whom: Letters of recommendation should be obtained from evaluators who can provide insight into the applicant's abilities, talents and aptitude for graduate study.

Coursework Required for Admission Consideration: Three admission options are open to those seeking the MMT degree:

  1. Master of Music Therapy, which is the option available to an applicant who has completed a bachelor's degree in Music Therapy and is certified to practice Music Therapy. Applicants for the MMT degree are expected to demonstrate the musicianship, self-awareness and interpersonal skills needed for in-depth clinical work.
  2. Music Therapy/Combined Master's Equivalency Program, which is the option available to an applicant who has a bachelor's degree in Music, but is not certified in Music Therapy and must complete Music Therapy core courses. This program integrates core courses in Music Therapy required for entry-level certification with the master’s program.
  3. Bachelor of Music in Music Therapy, which is the option available to an applicant who holds an undergraduate degree outside of Music or who does not have at least 60 undergraduate credits in Music or its equivalent. The bachelor’s degree must be earned prior to applying for the MMT.

In addition, the Master of Music Therapy – Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) Program is available to both MMT students and Master's Equivalency students who want to complete the additional coursework needed to satisfy the Pennsylvania requirements for licensure.

Bachelor's Degree in Discipline/Related Discipline: A baccalaureate degree in Music Therapy, Music Education, Music History, Music Performance, or Music Theory is required.

Statement of Goals: Share your special interests within the discipline and expectations for the program.

Standardized Test Scores:
Applicants who earned their baccalaureate degree from an institution where the language of instruction was other than English, with the exception of those who subsequently earned a master’s degree at a U.S. institution, must report scores for a standardized test of English that meet these minimums:

  • TOEFL iBT: 100
  • IELTS Academic: 7.0
  • PTE Academic: 68

Audition: Applicants must submit a video-recorded audition consisting of two pieces in different styles in the applicant’s major performance medium (with accompanist when needed) and three standard or popular songs sung and played by the applicant on piano and/or guitar from American children, geriatric, adult or adolescent repertoire. See for audition repertoire requirements.

Resume: Current resume required.

Transfer Credit: A student who wishes to transfer credit should speak with their academic advisor and download and complete a "Request for Transfer of Graduate Credit" form, found in TUportal under the Tools tab within “University Forms.” Transfer credits must be approved by the advisor, the department chair, and the Associate Dean. The maximum number of credits a student may transfer is 6.

Other: Due to the large number of applications for admission and the competitive nature of its music programs, the College admits only a portion of its applicants. In addition to the general admissions credentials required of all Temple University graduate applicants, specialized admission criteria (i.e., auditions, portfolios, interviews, recommendations, departmental term papers, and standardized examinations) are very heavily weighted in admission decisions of the Boyer College of Music and Dance. Graduate applicants may be rejected for admission for failing to obtain the required level of proficiency in any one area of the specialized admission criteria regardless of the level of success in meeting the Temple University general admission criteria. In addition to the level of success demonstrated in the above-mentioned criteria, a final admission factor is the College’s Optimum Enrollment Policy. This policy may preclude the admission of any student who meets the minimum requirements.

Program Requirements

General Program Requirements:
Number of Credits Required Beyond the Baccalaureate: 36 for the MMT; 63 for the Music Therapy/Combined Master's Equivalency Program; 12 to add the Licensed Professional Counselor option

Required Courses:

Master of Music Therapy

Core Courses
MUED 8601Qualitative Research in Music Therapy3
MUED 8602Quantitative Research in Music Therapy3
MUED 8603Theories of Music Psychotherapy2
MUED 8615Adv Mus Thrpy Clin Trng1
MUED 8617Multicultural Music Therapy2
MUED 8618Music in Medicine2
MUED 8621Music Therapy Ethics2
MUED 8626Models of Clinical Supervision in Music Therapy2
MUED 9687Advanced Music Therapy Practicum1
Electives 115
Recommended courses include:
Music Therapy Research
Music Therapy Foundation
Advanced Topics in Music Psychotherapy
Advanced Topics in Music Medicine
Music Therapy: Special Topics
Capstone Course
MUED 9995Master's Final Project3
Total Credit Hours36

Music Therapy/Combined Master's Equivalency Program

Core Courses
MUED 3689Fieldwork in Music Therapy2
MUED 3789Fieldwork in Music Therapy II2
MUED 3889Fieldwork in Music Therapy III2
MUED 4611Music Therapy Overview3
MUED 4614Psychiatric Music Therapy3
MUED 4616Developmental Music Therapy3
MUED 4619Medical/Rehabilitative Music Therapy3
MUED 4641Music Therapy Experiences I: Creative Methods1
MUED 4642Music Therapy Experiences II: Recreative Methods1
MUED 4643Music Therapy Experiences III: Receptive Methods1
MUED 4685Music Therapy Clinical Internship6
MUED 8601Qualitative Research in Music Therapy3
MUED 8602Quantitative Research in Music Therapy3
MUED 8603Theories of Music Psychotherapy2
MUED 8615Adv Mus Thrpy Clin Trng1
MUED 8617Multicultural Music Therapy2
MUED 8618Music in Medicine2
MUED 8621Music Therapy Ethics2
MUED 8626Models of Clinical Supervision in Music Therapy2
MUED 9687Advanced Music Therapy Practicum1
Electives 115
Recommended courses include:
Music Therapy Research
Music Therapy Foundation
Advanced Topics in Music Psychotherapy
Advanced Topics in Music Medicine
Music Therapy: Special Topics
Capstone Course
MUED 9995Master's Final Project3
Total Credit Hours63

Master of Music Therapy - Licensed Professional Counselor Program

CPSY 5519Group Counseling3
CPSY 5593Career Counseling and Development3
CPSY 5694Introduction to Assessment3
EPSY 5541Concepts in Human Development3
Total Credit Hours12

Additional Requirements:
Diagnostic Examination:
The Diagnostic Examination in Voice, Piano, and Guitar is required for all students entering the master’s degree program in Music Therapy. The examination covers two broad areas of competence:

  1. the ability to sing and play a large repertoire of songs from the standard, popular, traditional, folk, rock or country literature; and
  2. the ability to sight-sing and sight-harmonize songs from a fake book.

For the examination, students bring a list of at least 12 songs that they are prepared to sing and play. The examiners then select one or more songs to be sung and played on the piano, and one or more to be sung and played on the guitar. In the next portion of the examination, students are asked to sight-sing and sight-harmonize tunes from a fake book, using piano and guitar as accompaniments.

Any student who has not studied voice, piano and/or guitar, or who is not prepared to play popular music or use a fake book, may waive any or all portions of the examination and opt to take the appropriate remedial course(s). This is not unusual. Most students entering the program need instruction or practice in one or more of these areas. Therefore, students are encouraged to view this as merely a placement examination. Depending on each student’s background and competence, as demonstrated on the examination, students may be placed in the following remedial courses for 1 credit each:

MUED 1658Guitar I1
MUED 1659Guitar II1
MUED 3631Functional Voice I1
MUED 3632Functional Voice II1
MUED 3633Functional Piano I1
MUED 3634Functional Piano II1
MUED 3635Functional Guitar I1
MUED 3636Functional Guitar II1
MUSC 1211Voice Class1
MUSC 1212Voice Class1
MUST 2105Jazz Secondary Piano1
MUST 2106Jazz Secondary Piano1
MUST 3105Jazz Class Piano1
MUST 3106Jazz Class Piano1

Credits earned in required remedial courses do not apply toward the master’s degree.

NOTE:  All students must present themselves for the Diagnostic Examination at the designated time. Students who wish to waive any portion of the examination by taking the remedial courses are still required to present themselves for the scheduled Diagnostic Examination, unless they send written notification to the Music Therapy faculty stating their intent to waive all portions of the exam. When students waive all portions of the exam, they are required to take all remedial coursework without any further opportunity for taking or retaking the examination.

Clinical Experience:
Ongoing clinical experience is required.

Tuition and Fee Payments:
All tuition and fees must be paid according to the deadlines given by the Bursar's Office at the time of registration. This means that all payments must be received prior to the first day of the term in which the course is offered—not prior to the first day of the course, which in Music Therapy may be very late in the term. When payments are not received by the University deadlines for each term, registrations are automatically canceled, and late fees are imposed for reregistering. Often students do not receive written notification of this until well into the term. Students are encouraged to be punctual in meeting all registration deadlines, as failure to do so is very costly in time, effort and money.

Professional Development Policy:
In addition to taking the required subjects for their degrees, all students in the Boyer College of Music and Dance are obligated to serve in a number of capacities in order to enrich their academic and musical expertise. Boyer College of Music and Dance believes that such experiences give impetus to successful professional careers. Among the duties that may be required are conducting laboratory classes; tutoring; teaching private lessons; coaching; participating in the distribution and inventory control of Temple University-owned musical instruments and instructional materials; participating in ensembles; accompanying; performing at admissions and open house events; supervising performance classes; and engaging in other academic activities.

Independent Study Courses:
Independent study courses provide a special opportunity for graduate students to work in a highly individualized setting with one or more faculty members. All such study must receive the approval of the faculty member providing the instruction, the students' major advisor, and the Associate Dean. Approval is granted only after the student has presented a detailed description of the intended independent study project. Approval of independent study projects is granted only for students whose academic and musical record provides substantial support for the benefits of this type of study. In no case may more than 20% of a graduate student's curriculum be taken as independent study. Private lessons beyond those required in the curriculum are not an appropriate form of independent study.

Acceptable English:
All students, including those for whom English is not the native language, are expected to present all written work in acceptable English. No double standard exists to differentiate students on the basis of proficiency in the use of the English language. Students are also responsible for becoming familiar with the College's statement on plagiarism and academic honesty.

Applied Music Study:

  1. Graduate students in non-performing curricula may take up to 6 credits of applied study toward the degree with the permission of the major advisor. Such non-required lessons may be taken only if the student can pass the normal graduate-level performing audition expected of performance majors. In this event, a fee of $200, not covered by tuition remission, is charged.
  2. Regardless of major, graduate students with a demonstrable performing proficiency that may not meet the more rigorous requirements of a graduate-level audition may, by audition, qualify to take 2 credits of applied study per term for graduate credit. These courses carry a fee of $400 plus tuition and may be applied to the non-performing curriculum for degree credit. Up to 6 credits may be taken with the approval of the major advisor.
  3. Graduate assistantships and other forms of University-sponsored financial aid do not cover private lesson or Recital Extension fees.

All incomplete grades must be fulfilled within one year.

Culminating Events:
Comprehensive Examination:
Upon completion of the final projects and with permission of the Program Coordinator, the student may request permission to take the written qualifying examination. Students should contact the Program Coordinator regarding administration dates of the comprehensive examination.

The written qualifying examination in Music Therapy does not limit its scope to the coursework taken at Boyer College of Music and Dance. Instead, the student is expected to study comprehensively in preparation for this examination. The written qualifying examination in Music Therapy covers:

  1. Basic methods and techniques of Music Therapy.
  2. Principles of assessment and evaluation.
  3. Various client populations.
  4. Various theoretical approaches to individual and group therapy.
  5. Existing research literature and research approaches.
  6. Professional ethics.

Final Project:
As part of the Music Therapy curriculum, students undertake a final project that encompasses a pilot research study.


Program Web Address:

Department Information:

Dept. of Music Education and Therapy

Center for the Performing and Cinematic Arts/Boyer College of Music and Dance

2001 N. 13th Street

Philadelphia, PA 19122-6079


Submission Address for Application Materials:

Department Contacts:


James Short


Program Coordinator:

Dr. Darlene M. Brooks



Dr. Rollo Dilworth