M.A. Music Therapy
The University of the Pacific's music therapy department offers two graduate degrees: the Master of Arts in Music Therapy and the combined Certification/M.A. program in Music Therapy. The Master of Music degree is designed for candidates who have received an undergraduate degree in Music Therapy. The combined Certification/M.A. program is designed for those with Bachelor's degrees in music other than Music Therapy.
Graduate level education is becoming the expected standard in many health professions. Although the AMTA currently supports standards for entry into the music therapy profession at a Bachelor's Degree level, approximately 25% of music therapists in the U.S. currently hold a Master's degree. Advanced learning and skill development is seen as vital for maintaining both the quality of patient care, and to maintain a competitive position in current health care markets. As a research-based profession, techniques and standards of care in music therapy are rapidly expanding. Advanced practitioners and researchers are collaborating in the development of empirically supported music-based treatments for specific problems and health-related needs in a variety of specializations.
Students pursuing the Master of Arts in Music Therapy are able to focus on their specific personal career goals by selecting one of two tracks supporting: a) development of advanced clinical, administrative, and program development skills, or b) preparation for eventual entry into teaching and research careers. Generally, this will require completion of a Master's Degree in music therapy first, followed by doctoral level work available in other programs.
Graduate Assistantship scholarships and part-time employment opportunities in local agencies may be available for Board-Certified Music Therapists.