Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Music Therapy


Music Therapy

First Advisor

Dr. Claire Ghetti


The purpose of this phenomenological study is to explore the experience of music therapists who have had vocal health issues. Participants included three board-certified music therapists who use their voice as a primary or secondary instrument in practice and have experienced vocal health issues for which they obtained medical treatment. Participants described their experiences during semi-structured interviews, and an adaptation of Giorgi's (2012) descriptive phenomenological psychological method was used to identify the underlying themes. Themes that depicted the essence of the therapists' experiences were: (a) Physical Sensations Leading to Emotional Experiences, (b) Challenges to Identity, (c) Relationship Shifts, (d) Changes in Music Therapy Practices and Beliefs, and (e) Desire to Educate Others. These findings help in understanding how vocal health issues deeply impact music therapists, and how such experiences affect personal and professional realms. These findings also support the need for vocal health education in music therapy training.

Related Pillar(s)


Included in

Music Therapy Commons