Understanding the present, re-visioning the future: An initial mapping of music therapists in the United Kingdom
Carr, Catherine E.
Swijghuisen Reigersberg, Muriel
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Carr, C., Tsiris, G. & Swijghuisen Reigersberg, M. (2017) Understanding the present, re-visioning the future: An initial mapping of music therapists in the United Kingdom. British Journal of Music Therapy, 31(2), pp. 68-85.
Music therapy is a small, but evolving profession. Numbers of music therapists are increasing, yet little is known regarding the workforce and its employment characteristics. To understand the current profile of the music therapy workforce in the United Kingdom (UK), the British Association for Music Therapy (BAMT) commissioned a national survey of its membership. This survey explores the profile of the UK music therapy workforce in terms of demographics, training and employment characteristics. An online survey was circulated to all BAMT members. Data were analysed using descriptive statistics and thematic analysis of open-ended responses. A total of 374 therapists responded (44% response rate). Following demographic information (including age, nationality and training background), we focus on employment characteristics such as income, types of work, settings, clients and age groups. Supervision and clinical fees are considered as well as commissioning and funding of self-employed and employed music therapy work. As an initial mapping of the current UK workforce, this study offers a pragmatic platform to consider development and strategic priorities and thus to re-vision the future of music therapy in the country. Potential implications for the international music therapy community are also discussed.