A Systematic Rewiew of Resources for Adults with Depression

Date of Award


Degree Name

M.A. in Music Therapy


Department of Music Therapy


Advisor: James Hiller


Purpose: To conduct a review and evaluation of scholarly and popular press resources related to music therapy and depression in order to positively impact clinical practice for certified music therapists working with adults diagnosed with depression by identifying resources that clearly describe therapists' implementation procedures. Design: A systematic review of five resources. Methods: A thorough search of English language music therapy literature was conducted. From this search, five viable resources were identified for this review. For each resource reviewed, five categories were evaluated: participant age range, recency of the resource, Flesch reading score, currency of language, and application to practice. For application to practice, five subcategories were used for scoring purposes: First, were the implementation procedures clearly articulated? Second, was a clear description of the relevancy of music to the intended therapeutic aim provided? Third, was there mention of contraindications? Fourth, did the resource provide references to further illuminate the method used or offer the clinician other useful sources of information? Finally, were there any mention of cultural implications or considerations? Findings: Although the resources provide helpful information pertaining to working with adults with depression, there remains a dearth of actionable information in the music therapy literature. For example, four of the resources fail to provide information relevant to contraindications for the method variations described. All of the resources failed to mention cultural considerations when planning, designing, or facilitating particular method variations. Three of the resources provided additional references to further assist the reader.


music therapy, adults, depression

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