For Educators

"I did not see a lot of representation within my program and no one spoke about race or discrimination. It was also hard to see that certain music genres weren’t taught because they may be 'violent' or promote 'negative behaviors.'"

-Anonymous Music Therapy Survey Participant 

Teachers and professors at all education levels have a huge impact on future music therapists. By being educated on the topics of diversity, equity, and inclusion, as well as gender pronouns, and neurodiversity, educators can allow a student to have a full and inclusive education. Our teachers must be culturally aware and have great cultural humility in order to support students. Please utilize these resources so that we can grow together!
Anti-Racism Education 
from Showing Up for Social Justice
Multicultural competence
Engaging in difficult dialogues that are inherent in teaching about diversity.
(APA Psychology Teacher Network)
From Your Students...

Below are quotes from an anonymous survey of students who had ideas about ways that they could be better supported during their education. All quotes are used with permission. 


"Something I have struggled with as a trans student is how to incorporate best practices for trans clients into my work.  I feel most professors and supervisors have good intentions with pronouns, but are unsure how to ask and implement their intentions in front of a crowd.  I also feel that the curriculum and fieldwork can be difficult for students transitioning, as some transitions include physical discomfort (singing while your voice is changing) and others include emotional discomfort (having to disclose to clients during transition or choose to be misgendered/deadnamed for a semester)."

"I had trouble getting accommodations and understanding due to my disability. We learn about disabilities in all our courses, but when one of your students, a Music Therapy major has one, they suddenly act different."

"I have had my education disrupted by feeling weird power grapples and uncomfortabilities with professors and supervisors over my gender when I should have just been worried about my clinical work.  I have also had music therapy professors hold my mental illness over me and threaten me with the prospect of withholding a letter of recommendation based on poor mental health (rather than offer support or even frame it as "I want to support you in your education and I'm concerned that internship would be too intense for you right now") after I did an excellent job in my first semester of clinical work."

"I think a number of my classes have done a brief once-over or single session devoted to privilege/inclusion, but these topics should be explored much more deeply."

"We have no [education on diversity and inclusion] at my school as leadership is mostly cis-white."

"Some time is spent discussing culture and music, but typically from a lens of age and of country of origin. Little to no time is spent on other aspects of culture and how music and varying aspects of culture intersect."

"There is absolutely not sufficient time spent discussing it, particularly the IMPACT.  We barely even talk ABOUT diversity and inclusion and privilege and oppression but that's not even the impact!"

"When I was in school, there was a brief discussion of issues like this, but I feel most of what I learned came from my own exploration, from books I was reading independently, or from the women's studies electives I was taking. I do not believe that music therapists, at least from my program, are at a base level educated enough on these topics, which is especially troubling since music therapists frequently work with marginalized groups."