Office in University Center for the Arts, Room 120
(970) 491-5529

The Ph.D. in Music Therapy emphasizes research and scholarship, as appropriate for the music therapist who aspires to a career in research, college-level teaching, or advanced clinical practice. In this program, students engage in coursework that advances scholarship and helps to reach professional goals. Students are involved in groundbreaking research, with the opportunity to develop original research in an area of interest.

The degree is focused on three core areas:

  • Research Core: Engages in coursework and collaborative research projects that are focused on advancing research skills. Opportunity to pursue original research.

  • Music Therapy Clinical Practice Core: Further understanding of advanced clinical competencies, with an emphasis in evidence-based practices.

  • Academic Core: In order to prepare for a future as an educator or supervisor in music therapy, Students engage in coursework focused on teaching and learning in higher education.

Credit Requirements

The Ph.D. in Music Therapy is comprised of 72 credits, of which 30 credits may be accepted from a prior master's degree. Program credits include: 

  • 12-15 credits in each core area (research, clinical practice, academic) that are selected to prepare the student for future work in an academic, research, or advanced clinical position.

  • 15 directed electives, which are selected with the graduate committee to best meet the student’s needs and career goals. Subjects of study may include, but are not limited to, neuroscience, music therapy methods, research methods, statistics, teaching methods, and developmental science.

  • The program culminates with a final exam and completion of a substantial piece of original research.

Visit our website for information about research opportunities, eligibility, and teaching assistantships.

Effective Fall 2021

Clinical Core
MU 544Advanced Techniques-Neuroscience-Informed MT3
MU 545Composition and Improvisation--Music Therapy3
MU 647Historical Foundations of Music Therapy3
MU 648Neuroscience/Music Foundations in Therapy3
MU 649Advanced Practice in Music Therapy3
Research Core
MU 543Intro to Applied Music Research Methods3
MU 743Interpretivist Research in Music Therapy3
MU 744Music Therapy Research to Practice3
MU 692GSeminar: Music Therapy3
Academic Core
EDAE 620Processes and Methods3
or EDUC 651 Multicultural and Special Populations
EDAE 639Instructional Design3
MU 684Supervised College Teaching3
MU 792Seminar in Music Therapy 16
MU 799Dissertation 215
Electives (to be chosen in consultation with doctoral advisor) 30-15
Program Total Credits:72

MU 792 should be taken twice for a total of 6 credits.


Variable credits per semester may be taken in order to add up to 15 total credits.


Student may apply an earned Master’s degree for up to 30 credits toward the PhD requirements. 

A minimum of 72 credits are required to complete this program.