Neurologic Music Therapy Training

Programme

The Neurologic Music Therapy Training focuses on the use of music therapy for clients with neurologic disorders. 

The training will be held by Prof. Dr. Michael Thaut and Dr. Corene Hurt-Thaut.

Neurologic music therapy (NMT) is an evidence-based treatment, which can be deployed in cases of traumatic brain damage, strokes, Parkinson’s and Huntington’s disease, Alzheimer’s, dementia, autism and other neurological disorders. It turns out, however, that the applicability of the neurological music therapy proceeds. Meanwhile, the first scientific results are scored with people with Down, autism spectrum disorders and psychiatric problems.

The NMT-programme comprises an interesting training for music therapists but also other disciplines working with these client populations, such as speech therapists, physical therapist. This training is open to allied professionals who are interested in gaining a deeper understanding of neurologic music therapy (NMT) and music therapists interested in utilizing NMT methodology and techniques.


Neurologic Music Therapy is defined as the therapeutic application of music to cognitive, sensory, and motor function due to neurologic disease of the human nervous system. Neurologic Music Therapy is research-based. Its treatment techniques are based on the scientific knowledge in music perception and production and the effects thereof on nonmusical brain and behavior functions. Populations served by Neurologic Music Therapists include, but are not limited to: stroke, traumatic brain injury, Parkinson's and Huntington's disease, cerebral palsy, developmental disorders, Alzheimer's disease, autism, and other neurological diseases affecting cognition, movement, and communication (e.g., MS, Muscular Dystrophy, etc). The 4-day, 30-hour training will provide therapists with advanced clinical training and scientific knowledge in the field of NMT. Upon completion of this course, participants will:

  1. Be able to demonstrate a basic definition and introductory knowledge about neurologic music therapy (NMT), including the taxonomy of techniques used in NMT.
  2. Demonstrate an increased knowledge of current research supporting NMT techniques.
  3. Demonstrate a working knowledge of the Transformational Design Model; a model to assist in treatment selection based on functional goals.
  4. Identify current clinical assessments that can be used by NMT’s for treatment evaluation.
  5. Be able to answer basic neuroanatomy and pathology questions related to a variety of neurologic disorders.

Course curriculum

The most important principles and 20 specific technics of NMT concerning motor, speech-language and cognitive issues will be covered during this course.

Scientific Foundations of NMT

Neuropathology/ Disease Review

Sensorimotor Techniques:

  • Rhythmic Auditory Stimulation
  • Pattern Sensory Enhancement
  • Therapeutic Instrumental Playing

Speech Techniques:

  • Melodic Intonation Therapy
  • Musical Speech Stimulation
  • Rhythmic Speech Cueing
  • Vocal Intonation Therapy
  • Therapeutic Singing
  • Oral Motor and Respiratory Exercises
  • Developmental Speech and Language Training through Music
  • Symbolic Communication Training through Music

Cognitive Techniques:

  • Music Neglect Training
  • Auditory perception Training
  • Musical Attention Control Training
  • Musical Mnemonics Training
  • Associative Mood and Memory Training
  • Musical Executive Functions Training
  • Music Psychosocial Training

Download the Training schedule

Recommended literature

Certification

A certificate for this programme in neurological music therapy is issued by the Robert Unkefer Academy of Neurologic Music Therapy, endorsed by the World Federation of Neurorehabilitation, and recognized as advanced continuing education training by CBMT. For Dutch music therapists the SRVB registration is expected to accredit the training. Completion of the NMT training allows the board-certified music therapist to practice and use the credential of NMT for three years. This training is open to other students and professionals outside of the field of music therapy, however, completion of the NMT training does NOT allow one to practice outside their professional licensure-training-certification. There are no required prerequisites to take this training.