Music Therapy Undergraduate Degree
B.M. in Music Therapy
The Music Therapy concentration is designed to prepare students to take the examination of the Certification Board for Music Therapists (MT-BC). Music therapy is the clinical and evidence-based use of music to accomplish individualized goals within a therapeutic relationship. As a MT-BC, graduates may work in a variety of health care settings, including hospitals, clinics, rehabilitation facilities, assisted living centers, and in special education. Some music therapists maintain private practices or serve as consultants.
The undergraduate curriculum includes core music courses, music therapy methods and research courses, and general education courses. All students learn to demonstrate musicianship on several instruments including piano, guitar, and voice. Students engage with community members in a variety of service learning and clinical practicum placements, where they are supervised by board-certified music therapists. Students also complete a clinical internship at one of several approved sites, for a total of 1200 hours of clinical experience (as required by the American Music Therapy Association).
The Music Therapy program at CSU is internationally recognized for its leadership in clinical training and research. The music therapy area includes the Undergraduate Music Therapy Research Academy and the interdisciplinary Brainwaves Research Laboratory, where students have opportunities for hands-on involvement in music and music therapy research.
A background check is required prior to participating in the practicum course (MU 486A).
Undergraduate Music Therapy Audition/Interview Process
Students applying to the B.M. in Music Therapy are required to interview with members of the Music Therapy faculty, in addition to auditioning on their principal instrument. Interviews will take place on the same day you audition.
Prospective music therapy students have the option of auditioning to be part of an applied studio (e.g., flute, violin, voice), in addition to the music therapy area. Acceptance into an applied studio is recommended and is necessary if a student will engage in lessons on their primary instrument for their elective credits. Please note that scholarships at CSU music are funded through applied studios and students wishing to earn a scholarship must audition for an applied studio (and continue playing in the studio/ensembles to maintain their scholarship).
Students Applying for an Applied Studio and Music Therapy: As studio space is limited, students will need to be accepted into the applied studio in order to take lessons. In Acceptd you will indicate that you are a music therapy major and you will indicate the applied studio (i.e., flute or voice). Prospective students who wish to study in an applied studio will need to complete two auditions: 1) the audition/interview for the applied studio area and 2) the video audition and live interview for the music therapy area. The studio audition will be evaluated by faculty in that instrumental area (for instance, a flute player will be evaluated by members of the woodwind faculty). The music therapy audition materials will be evaluated by the music therapy faculty. Music therapy students who audition for and are accepted into a studio will agree to study in the studio for the full academic year.
Students Applying for Music Therapy (no studio): Prospective music therapy students may indicate that they would like to enter the program without applying to a studio by selecting the music therapy “no studio” category. Prospective music therapy “no studio” students will need to complete the video audition and live interview for the music therapy area. Student auditions/interviews will be evaluated by the music therapy faculty. Note: Students who do not take lessons or contribute to ensembles on a primary instrument are not eligible for a music-based scholarship.
All students applying to be a music therapy major must demonstrate a strong musical foundation, including accurate pitch perception and vocal skills.
Audition Required of All Music Therapy Applicants
All prospective music therapy students will be asked to complete the following audition and interview process for the music therapy program. Students who wish to audition in an applied studio must also complete the audition for that studio (see studio auditions here; the studio audition may be done in-person or virtually).
The music therapy portion of the audition process is evaluated by the music therapy faculty.
- Upload a video of yourself singing three prepared songs from different genres (i.e., one children’s song, one popular music song, and one country song). You are encouraged to accompany yourself (i.e., guitar, piano, etc.…) while singing these songs; however, you may sing a cappella or use a recorded accompaniment if you have no prior accompaniment instrument experience. Videos must be high enough quality that the faculty can hear your musicianship. There is not an in-person option for this portion of the audition.
- Prospective students must sign up for a 20-minute interview. During the interview, you will be asked to:
- Sing one additional prepared song (while accompanying yourself, if possible)
- Sing a song selected by the faculty (i.e., a children’s song or well-known song)
- Sightread rhythms and play by ear/match pitch
- Interview with the faculty regarding your understanding of music therapy, why you have selected the music therapy major, and what you will contribute to the program.
Decisions following the music therapy audition process:
- Accepted to a studio and the music therapy major: Students would take lessons in the applied studio for at least one academic year as a part of their music therapy coursework.
- Accepted to a studio, not the music therapy major: Students could pursue another degree program (Such as the Bachelor of Arts) and study within the applied studio. Students may reapply for the music therapy program for next academic year.
- Accepted to major, not accepted to the applied studio: Students could join the music therapy program; however, would not take lessons in the applied studio in their first year. Students may re-audition for the applied studio in their second year at CSU.
Please also follow the requirements for your instrument/voice and general audition details listed here.