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MLE Subcommittee News

August 25, 2013 12:30 PM


In an effort to keep all music therapists updated on the continuing exploration of the proposal to make the Master’s degree the entry level for the profession, the following information is made available to you.

As you may know, Town Hall meetings were held at all regional conferences in 2012. The meetings allowed members to comment on the two papers created by the Education and Training Advisory Board proposing Masters level entry into the field.

In the summer of 2012 a Subcommittee of the AMTA Board of Directors, the Masters Level Entry (MLE) Sub-Committee, was created to gather more information related to questions posed at the Town Hall meetings. Last year at the AMTA annual conference in St. Charles, IL, a forum for Educators and Internship Directors/Supervisors provided another opportunity to discuss this proposal.

The following information is from the Educators and Internship Directors/Supervisors forum, as well as summaries of comments from the Town Hall meetings, and the power point presentation given at the 2013 regional conferences by members of the MLE Subcommittee.

The Educators and Internship Directors/Supervisors Forum took place in October of 2012. The Forum provided the opportunity for educators and internship directors/supervisors, the people largely responsible for implementing proposed change related to Master’s Level Entry into the music therapy profession, to have a formal discussion.

The Forum began with formal presentations by people representing state supported and private, liberal arts campuses from across the country as well as the Chair of the Association Internship Approval Committee. Fourteen, 5-minute Formal presentations were given and the power point slides of the presentations are provided.

After the formal presentations Forum participants then divided into 10 small groups and were asked to discuss the following questions:

  1. What did you hear that this group thinks is critically important for the Association in making this decision?
  2. What are the top three benefits?
  3. What are the top three challenges?
  4. Is there a model for education and clinical training not yet articulated?

Each small group compiled a report of their discussion, created power point slides, and presented their slides to the entire Forum. The slides from the small group discussions are also posted. Forum Co-Chairs Bryan Hunter and Christine Neugebauer provided the following summary of the Forum.

A wide variety of opinions were expressed in both the formal presentations and in the small group discussions. These opinions included:

  1. Both support for and opposition to moving to MLE now.
  2. Potential support for moving to MLE, but only after further study of the possible effects on: workforce, students, universities, and clients.
  3. Support for close examination of education and clinical training for the 21st century, regardless of MLE decision.
  4. A fairly common concern that the master’s degree cannot be both entry level and advanced at the same time.
  5. Consistent support for retaining the bachelor’s degree in some form regardless of the MLE decision. Possibilities included: a. retaining it as is, b. using it as a pre-master’s degree, and c. re-branding it as something related, such as a bachelor’s of music in human services.
  6. A number of proposals were for a clear two-tiered education model (bachelor’s, master’s) tied to provisional entry level certification (for entry level practice) followed by required advanced certification to continue practice.

PowerPoint Presentations:

Small Group Presentations:

Regional Conference Presentations:

Members of the Master's Level Entry Subcommittee presented a session at each regional conference in the spring of 2013. The sessions included a power point presentation summarizing work of the Subcommittee. The presentation reviewed steps leading to the formation of the Subcommittee, the initial work of the Subcommittee to investigate other allied health professions, summaries from the 2012 Town Hall Meetings, the process and themes from the Educators and Internship Directors/Supervisors Forum in October 2012, and questions and recommendations provided by NASM. Following the power point presentation time was allocated for audience members' questions and comments. The power point slides with the text are presented here. If you have questions, feel free to contact any of the members of the Subcommittee: Mary Ellen Wylie (Chair) Amy Furman, Angie Snell, Bryan Hunter, Christine Neugebauer, Cynthia Briggs, Jane Creagan, Jim Borling, and Ronna Kaplan.