Alisha Snyder

Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Music



First Advisor

Dr. Brian L. Wilson

Second Advisor

Edward A. Roth

Third Advisor

Dr. John A. Lychner


Music therapy, quality of life, self-report, caregiver-report, dementia

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of music therapy on the quality of life of people with symptoms of dementia. Both self-reported and caregiver-reported quality of life scores were recorded before and after an eight-week treatment period. A control group of discussion and an experimental group of music therapy were included in the study, with a sample size of N = 13. Analysis of the data was done with t tests. No statistical significance was found when comparing the average quality of life scores in the discussion group or the music therapy group from pretest to posttest, in either the self-reported or caregiver-reported scores. Also, there was no statistically significant difference in the changes of scores between the experimental or control group from pretest to posttest in either self-reported or caregiver-reported quality of life scores. Finally, there was no difference in the posttest scores between the self-reported and caregiver-reported quality of life scores. Recommendations for further research include using a larger sample size, comparing the results of participants with different levels of symptoms of dementia, and comparing different types of music therapy, including vocal versus instrumental, live versus recorded music, or active versus passive participation.