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 how music therapists recognized, acknowledged, utilized, and managed countertransference when working with children with developmental disabilities. Three board-certified music therapists (MT-BC), who had experience working with this population and experienced strong countertransference reactions in their work, openly shared their experiences during 45-60 minute audio-recorded in-person or telephone interviews. Phenomenological design was employed in this study. Essential themes that emerged from the data were identified and presented. Common themes included feelings of attachment, reexperiencing the past, fulfilling needs in the therapist, and experiencing deep concern for the client. Overall, this study concludes that examining countertransference is a beneficial and valuable tool for music therapists working with children with developmental disabilities allowing them to increase their awareness and gain deeper insight into themselves, clients, and the therapeutic relationship.

Related Pillar(s)


Included in

Music Therapy Commons