Seulgi Kim

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Music Therapy


Music Therapy

First Advisor

Dr. Seung-A Kim


The purpose of this study was to explore music therapy with adolescents in crisis in both America and Korea. Qualitative methods were employed in this study and the data were collected through semi-structured interviews with two music therapists —one American music therapist practicing in the United States and one Korean practicing in Korea — who have experience working with adolescents in crisis. The participants openly shared their experiences during an hour video-recorded on-line interviews. After the interviews, all content of the interviews was transcribed and analyzed. Three essential categories emerged: (a) the role of music, (b) the role of therapist, and (c) the cultural differences in the therapeutic process. Within the category of the role of music, the following themes emerged: (a) eliciting self-expression, (b) evoking projection, and (c) improving self-esteem. Within the category of the role of therapist, the following themes emerged: (a) expressing empathic understanding and (b) consistent and reliable caretaking. Within the category of cultural differences in the therapeutic process, the following themes emerged: (a) client openness and trust and (b) therapist emphasis on process versus product. Implications for music therapy clinical practice and future study are discussed.

Related Pillar(s)


Included in

Music Therapy Commons