A descriptive study of private practice in music therapy

Michael J. Silverman, Michelle J. Hairston

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Of professional music therapists in the American Music Therapy Association, 9% report being self-employed or in private practice. The purpose of this paper was to provide initial data concerning music therapists who are in private practice. The researchers successfully sent out 353 surveys and 118 were completed and returned via electronic mail for a response rate of 33.4%. Although general, results indicate that music therapists in private practice are active within the profession, doing presentations and inservices, conducting research, supervising practica students and interns, and keeping current with forthcoming research. Data indicate that most music therapists chose private practice due to a more flexible schedule, increased salary, and the lack of previously established job opportunities. Additionally, 65.8% of respondents reported having a bachelor's degree in music therapy, 29.2% reported having a master's degree, and 5.1 % reported having a doctoral degree. Quantitative results, rationale, and suggestions are included in an attempt to assist music therapists who are interested in starting private practices.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)262-271
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Music Therapy
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 2005

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