Music Therapy


‘Music Therapy is Heartwork’

There are multiple ways of knowing, multiple ways of interacting and multiple opportunities for practice…
(John Hattie)

Carola Werger
Head of the Music Therapy dept.


ArtEZ believes music therapists are musicians that apply their musical skills during processes of change. During the course, you will learn how to use music methodically in the treatment or guidance of clients with various problems or queries. This means that close attention is paid to your own musical and personal development.

A professional music therapist helps clients by using specific methods and techniques, with music that the therapist composes or generates through improvisation and accompaniment on various instruments.

Studying at the ArtEZ Academy of Music

ArtEZ’s Music Therapy is the only music therapy course in the Netherlands that is offered at a conservatory. During your studies, you will receive broad musical training. You must be able to play a number of instruments and, of course, be able to use your voice. You will receive piano, singing and percussion lessons in addition to lessons to learn your own chosen instrument. Improvisational music is key in both the music courses and the methodology and experience courses. In the Music Theory Workshop, writing music forms the basis for the development and mastering of music theory principles.

Therapeutic knowledge

Of course, to be able to operate successfully in your new profession, therapeutic knowledge and skills are also required. You will learn to use music as a catalyst for change, stabilisation, acceptance and development. You will receive lessons in subjects such as methodology, music psychology, self-actualisation and health sciences. A number of internships will also ensure that you become acquainted with professional practice.

Music Therapy based on science

In this course, a great deal of focus is dedicated to the scientific foundation of music therapy. Recent scientific research demonstrates that music has a profound effect on humans. The Music Therapy course even has a number of in-house researchers. Annemiek Vink received her PhD in 2013 for her thesis on the effect of music and movement on patients with dementia. Laura Hakvoort received her PhD in 2014 for her thesis on the effect of music therapy on criminal behaviour of patients in involuntary commitment (TBS) facilities. Monique van Bruggen-Rufi is working on a PhD research subject about the effects of music therapy on patients with Huntington’s disease. The course has its own knowledge centre and professorship.