What is a Music Therapist?

A board-certified music therapist (MT-BC) must be certified by the Certification Board of Music Therapists (CBMT) by completion of the following:

  • Graduation from an American Music Therapy Association approved academic program at the Bachelor or Master level, including clinical training and internship of 1,200 hours
  • Completion of a written examination of skills and competencies
  • Recertification every 5 years through examination or successful completion of 100 continuing education (CMTE) credits

Music therapists must demonstrate certain essential competencies.  These include:

Clinical foundations:  including exceptionality, therapeutic dynamics and therapeutic relationship

Music therapy foundations: including assessment, treatment planning, treatment implementation, documentation, evaluation, interdisciplinary (treatment team) collaboration, supervision, closure and ethics.

Musical foundations: vocal, keyboard, guitar, nonsymphonic instrumentation, composing, arranging, conducting, improvisation and creative movement.