Supervision for music therapists: An Australian cross-sectional survey regarding views and practices

Supervision for music therapists: An Australian cross-sectional survey regarding views and practices

Abstract

 Music therapy professional organisations regard supervision as important and therapists are often encouraged to use supervision. However, little is known about music therapists' views and practices of supervision. Objective: The objective of this study was to investigate the views and practices of Australian-based music therapists regarding supervision. Method: A cross-sectional on-line survey was conducted with registered music therapists (RMT) practising within Australia. Responses were analysed using descriptive analyses. Results: A response rate of 19.5% (71/360) was achieved. Overall completion rate was 16.3% (59/360). Four sets of respondents were identified, including those who received supervision from a music therapist; from a non-music therapist, from both music therapist and non-music therapist and a substantial proportion that did not receive supervision. No significant differences (p [less than or equal to] 0.05) were found between the groups that did and did not access supervision, however differences in costs and location were identified. The majority of those that received supervision (57%) received it from a supervisor not qualified in music therapy. The top three factors used to select a music therapy qualified supervisor were trust and prior knowledge of the supervisor, workplace requirements, and the type of supervision needed. The two highest-ranking reasons for not using supervision were working in a setting where supervision was not needed, and working with a population where supervision was not required. Conclusions: Our findings highlight a gap between the importance placed on supervision by music therapy professional organisations and what this group of therapists report that they do. Based on our findings, professional guidelines surrounding the practice of professional supervision also need to be reviewed.

 

Keywords:Supervision, survey, best practice, Australia, music therapy


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Date published: July 2013

Kennelly, J. D., Baker, F. A., Morgan, K. A., & Daveson, B. A. (2012). Supervision for music therapists: An Australian cross-sectional survey regarding views and practices. Australian Journal of Music Therapy, 23, 42-58.