The future of music

6 Best Online Master’s in Music Therapy Degrees

December 29, 2023
online music therapy degree

Getting an online music therapy degree is a convenient way to expand your knowledge and improve your career prospects.

And for today’s article, we rounded up the best online master’s degrees in music therapy.

All of these masters are accredited and affordable.

Plus, you can take lessons regardless of where you live – it’s all happening online.

So without further ado, let’s take a look at the top online master’s in music therapy degrees.

1. Alverno College

Alverno College, Best Online Master’s in Music Therapy Degree. 

Alverno College Online Master of Music Therapy is one of the best university programs you can find in this field. 

As one of the first university programs of its kind, Alverno College has been a leader in the field of music therapy for more than 70 years.

The program is suitable for anyone who wishes to enrich their clinical practice or start building a career in music therapy.

Their courses are grounded in research, and they are focused on using evidence-informed music therapy techniques.

Alverno College offers spring, summer, and fall classes, and you can apply via their free online application.

Their application process includes sending your documents (college transcripts, proof of board certification, and three professional letters of recommendation), a demonstration of applied clinical musicianship, and an interview.

2. Loyola University New Orleans

Loyola University New Orleans

Loyola University also offers an accredited Master of Music Therapy degree online.

Their areas of expertise include mental health, addictions, hospice, pediatric medical, traumatic brain injury, and so on.

Some of their music therapy courses include Advanced Music Psychotherapy Models, Music Therapy in Medicine, Music Therapy Theories, Multicultural Issues in Music Therapy, Guided Imagery and Music, and Advanced Research Methods.

If you don’t have a bachelor’s degree in music therapy, the University offers the equivalency program.

And if you’re ready to apply, you should keep an eye out for rolling admissions.

Admission to the music therapy degree program requires an audition, an interview, a personal statement, and a resume.

3. Georgia College & State University

Georgia College & State University

If you’re interested in music therapy distance learning, you should also check out Georgia College & State University’s online master’s program.

You can apply if you’re a music therapy undergraduate, and you’ll have to go through an interview and an audition.

When it comes to their online music therapy lessons, the program is focused on special education, mental/physical health, and many other relevant coursework areas.

And to get an accredited master’s degree in music therapy in Georgia, 35 total credit hours and a graduate clinical project are required. 

You should also keep in mind that this online graduate program includes mandatory in-campus seminars that are held once each semester. 

The purpose of these seminars is to provide experiential learning necessary for quality music therapy education.

4. Colorado State University Global Campus

Colorado State University Global Campus

Another great option for music therapy online learning is offered by Colorado State University Global Campus.

With their nationally recognized online music therapy degree, you’ll be able to get a job in a variety of settings.

The program will allow you to expand your background in neuroscience, music, and research, and it will help you acquire all the necessary skills.

The courses are based on evidence-based practice and up-to-date techniques.

And the program includes a one-time long weekend on campus.

The rest of the program can be completed online, and all students are required to do a thesis and a practicum to graduate. 

5. Indiana University 

Indiana University music therapy university program

If you’re looking for a music therapy university program that can be completed 100% online, you should consider Indiana University.

With this online master’s program, you’ll develop advanced research skills, enhance your critical analysis, and learn how to integrate current research findings into clinical practice.

You’ll also learn how to integrate the vast array of music technology tools into clinical practice.

To be accepted to this program, you must have current music therapy board certification or international equivalent.

And to graduate, you’ll have to complete 30 hours of coursework and do a final project/thesis.

6. Augsburg University

Augsburg University

Augsburg University offers a hybrid music therapy program, which means you can complete it partly on campus and partly online.

And their hybrid model is quite convenient – each semester, students come to campus for an intensive one-week session, and throughout the rest of the semester, they complete coursework online.

The program is flexible and innovative, and it’s designed to meet the changing demands of healthcare.

Some of their music therapy graduate courses include Music Therapy Research, Music and Imagery, Transcultural Music Therapy, and Music Therapy in Palliative Care.

Their Master of Music Therapy is for students who are currently board-certified music therapists, but there’s also the Equivalency Plus MMT program for students with a bachelor’s degree in music but not in music therapy.

What do Music Therapists Do?

Music can truly do wonders, and many people can’t imagine their life without it. 

But besides being an important and beloved part of our lives, music has an important role as a therapeutic tool. 

There is clinical evidence of the impact and influence of music on the well-being of people, and music therapy is getting more and more attention in the medical world.

For instance, music is beneficial to those who suffer from mental illness, trauma, developmental disorders, stress, and so on.

That said, music therapy is usually defined as the clinical use of music to accomplish individualized goals.

These goals can include:

  • Improving mental health
  • Managing pain
  • Reducing stress
  • Enhancing memory

So, music therapists work with a variety of individuals to help them achieve specific goals and improve their mental and/or physical health.

And they use music as their therapeutic tool.

woman using laptop with headphones

Music therapists are usually highly trained practitioners; so if you’re wondering if you need a degree to become a music therapist, the short answer is yes.

A professional music therapist holds a bachelor’s degree or higher.

So, if you want to start a career in music therapy, acquiring a music therapy degree is a must.

A music therapy program will introduce you to necessary techniques and knowledge of psychology and music, but it will also show you how to utilize skills you might already have.

Generally, a music therapist should possess the following skills and qualifications:

  • Knowledge of psychology
  • Knowledge of fine arts
  • Counseling skills (active listening)
  • Patience and flexibility
  • Sensitivity and understanding
  • Interpersonal skills 
  • Basic computer knowledge

With a music therapy master’s degree, you can get a job in a variety of facilities and companies, such as medical, correctional, and educational facilities, independent music therapy companies, and so on.

And what direction you’re going to take as a music therapist depends on your specific skills and preferences. 

Regardless of what you opt for, getting a degree in music therapy will ultimately improve your career prospects and bring you closer to achieving your goals. 

Online Music Therapy Degree – Final Thoughts 

To become a music therapist, you need a special set of skills, including sensitivity, knowledge of psychology and fine arts, counseling skills, and so on.

And if you want to get a job as a music therapist, obtaining a master’s degree in music therapy is a must.

Luckily, you can complete your program entirely online – many excellent schools offer the possibility to get an online music therapy degree.

You just need to find a university program that meets your needs, check their application dates, and get your application ready! 

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