Special Issue 7 (1) 2015, “Music Therapy in Europe: Paths of Professional Development” – Article
Paths of professional development in music therapy: Training, professional identity and practice
Music therapy is listed as a profession in the EU Regulated Professions Database. This has assisted the next steps towards recognition in relevant countries and regions. The author’s experience as an academic leader in music therapy training over more than two decades is used to reflect on the profession of music therapy within Europe through interrogation of concepts underpinning professional identity, training, and professional practice. Potential tensions between recognition and regulation of healthcare professions are presented and discussed. As all practice takes place in context, balancing training needs between techniques and skills, systemic national and regional policy, and institutional knowledge is crucial. Achieving this balance is not easy but is key to successful growth of practitioner knowledge, seeding student’s curiosity about context and systems from the dawn of training.
Keywords: music therapy training; university contexts; music therapy trainers; music therapy students; professional regulation
Jane Edwards, PhD RMT, Associate Professor, Music Therapy, University of Limerick, Ireland; Programme Leader in Mental Health, Deakin University, Waterfront Campus, Geelong, Australia. Jane is the editor of the Oxford Handbook of Music Therapy (forthcoming 2015). She is author of more than 100 publications including three edited books, and 40 refereed papers, many on topics related to music therapy training, supervision and professional practice. Originally from Australia, where she was the course director in music therapy at the University of Queensland, she directed the music therapy training at the University of Limerick (UL) for 14 years.