Abstract and Keywords
New students of music therapy soon find that the most common inquiry about their field of study is “What is music therapy?” They may also be asked questions such as “Does that work?” Even experienced practitioners in the field can find these questions annoyingly routine in meeting new colleagues. In answering these questions, providing a definition of music therapy is important. There are multiple constructs through which the functions and capacities of music therapy can be usefully discussed. Five of these areas are elaborated in the Oxford Handbook of Music Therapy; music therapy contexts and populations across the lifespan, music therapy models and approaches, music therapy methods, music therapy research, and music therapy training and professional issues. This chapter elaborates these areas and discusses the contribution to the development of music therapy in each of these sectors of inquiry and practice.
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