Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Music



First Advisor

Brian L. Wilson

Second Advisor

Edward A. Roth

Third Advisor

Dr. Kenneth Smith

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


The purpose of this study was to gather information regarding physicians' knowledge, attitudes, referral practices and barriers to use of music therapy in medical settings, as compared with related allied health professions. It is hoped that this knowledge will help music therapists identify opportunities for education and research, leading to the continued expansion of music therapy in health care. Participants were asked to complete a one-time online survey with 20 questions pertaining to basic demographic information, knowledge, attitudes, referral practices, and perceived barriers to use for music therapy and four related allied health professions. Forty-two physicians completed the survey beyond the first 3 demographic questions.

Results of this survey indicated that physicians have limited knowledge of music therapy; seem not to have formed strong opinions about music therapy; and report few actual referrals to music therapy, despite reported willingness to refer. Additionally, physicians reported greater knowledge, experience, education, and contact, more positive attitudes, and more actual referrals for the allied health professions than for music therapy. Physicians identified fewer factors influencing referrals, fewer areas of functioning for which they would refer, and more barriers to use for music therapy than the other professions. Greater knowledge of music therapy was associated with more positive attitudes, and participants with positive attitudes toward music therapy were more likely to report a recent referral to music therapy than participants with negative attitudes. Analysis based on demographic information also revealed interesting trends.

Included in

Music Therapy Commons