Date Available


Year of Publication


Degree Name

Master of Music (MM)

Document Type

Master's Thesis


Fine Arts



First Advisor

Dr. Olivia Yinger


Music therapists use songwriting interventions to address a variety of goals with several populations. Nevertheless, limited research exists regarding the use of songwriting interventions with individuals who are grieving. The purpose of this study was to examine practices and perceptions of board-certified music therapists working with clients who are grieving, specifically: (a) common interventions used to address grief (b) use of songwriting intervention; (c) perceived effectiveness of songwriting; and (d) music therapists’ comfort levels and training in implementing songwriting interventions. An online survey was sent to 6,292 board-certified music therapists, 324 of whom completed the survey. Participants reported that they use counseling techniques, singing, and songwriting with individuals who are grieving. Respondents indicated that songwriting was most effective in increasing emotional expression of clients who are grieving. All participants (N = 324, 100%) believed that songwriting could be an effective intervention for clients who are grieving. Music therapists expressed a need for further training in implementing songwriting interventions.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)