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Chapter 1 Overview of Music Therapy Research
What is Research? • Gfeller – “disciplined or systematic inquiry” • Bruscia – “a systematic, self-monitored inquiry which leads to discovery or new insight, which, when documented and disseminated, contributes to or modifies existing knowledge or practice”
Four Basic Steps of All Research • Make clear statement of the purpose and aspects under investigation • Select method that is clearly described and justified • Report the results • Draw conclusions that are related to existing knowledge
Epistomological Questions • What is a legitimate object of study? • What is the relationship between the knower and the known? • What is the nature of causality? • What is meant by truth in research? • Is objectivity possible? (desirable?)
Professional Tasks (Not Research) • Clinical work • Documentation • Write about or discuss clinical work (communicate)
Research Journals in MT1970-1990 • 1970 – One: JMT • 1980 – Two: JMT and Canadian Journal • 1990 – Six: JMT, Canadian Journal, Music Therapy, Music Therapy Perspectives, British Journal, Australian Journal
Books About MT Research • 1970 – Experimental Research in Music (Madsen and Madsen) • 1993 – Music Therapy Research 1st edition (Wheeler) • 1996 – Music Therapy Research and Practice in Medicine (Aldridge) • 1996 – Qualitative Music Therapy Research (Langenberg, et al) • 1997 – Multiple Perspectives (Smeijsters) • 2001 – Beginning Research in the Arts Therapies (Ansdell & Pavlicevic)
Goals • Research: Modify the way things are done or thought about • Clinical Practice: Conduct clinical work and communicate about it.
Reciprocal Relationships Research Theory Practice
Relationship Between Research and Theory • Theory provides a structure for all clinical work (even if it is not well-developed or articulated) • Research serves as a foundation for theory development or the result of it
Relationship Between Research and Practice • The results of research inform and shape practice • Questions arising from practice generate research projects
Relevance • Are there problems applying the results of research directly to clinical practice? • Does the current research address the populations and issues with whom clinicians work? • Do music therapists have access to journals in which MT-related studies are being published? (nursing, rehab, neuroscience, education, etc.)
Reasons for Lack of Relevance • Perhaps students are not taught to understand and appreciate the value of research? • Perhaps clinicians are not motivated to read research? • Perhaps the research is prohibitive to read, understand, and apply? • Perhaps quantitative research methods do not yield information that is applicable to creative, generative, “psyche” work?
Early Contributors to MT Theory • Gaston (1968) • Sears (1968) • Ruud (1973)
More Recent Contributors • Kenny (1989) • Aigen (1991) • Bruscia (1995, 1998) • Edwards (1999) • Stige (2002)
Basic Research • Also called “pure” or “fundamental” research • Research conducted for the sake of gaining knowledge, without a focus on practical application (medicine, pscyhology) • Examples: How the brain processes music, How people form musical preferences, etc.
Applied Research • Conducted in order to solve a practical problem • Subjects (participants) are typically “real” populations (people with MR, patients with cancer, etc.) • MT assessment, treatment, and evaluation studies are applied
Historical Research • “the systematic study of past practices, materials, institutions, and people involved in therapeutic applications of music”
Experimental Research • Used to determine cause-effect relationships • Conditions are controlled by the researcher • Many different types
Descriptive Research • Does not seek to control or manipulate variables, simply measure or record them • Includes • 1) survey research • 2) correlational research and • 3) case studies and longitudinal studies
Theoretical/ Philosophical Research • Involves speculation, analysis, critique • “analyze and contextualize theory, research, and practice within the history of ideas” (Bruscia) • Uses exposition and argument as a primary mode of inquiry and presentation
Quantitative Paradigm • Quantitative = Positivistic Paradigm, concerned with natural phenomena as verified by the empirical sciences • Inductive-experimental reasoning dates to 17th century (nature is consistent and not random) • Truth exists and it is possible to discover it with controlled scientific methods
Qualitative Paradigm • Qualitative = Nonpositivistic Paradigm, concerned with multiple constructions or perspectives of a phenomenon • There is no single, static truth • The knower and the known are inseperable • Values are central to investigation • Kant – human knowing is dependent upon what goes on inside
Mixed Methods • Incorporates quantitative and qualitative methods • Purists argue against mixing • Pragmatists base methodological decisions upon practicality • Dialectics embrace juxtaposition as a means of generating more complete and insightful understanding
Final Comments All kinds of research… historical experimental descriptive theoretical/philosophical can be conducted using quantitative and/or qualitative perspectives