Our Research

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The Music Therapy provision at the University's Department of Music and Performing Arts was set up in 1994 by Helen Odell-Miller and Amelia Oldfield. In addition to providing the first MA Music Therapy training in the UK, the department became a world-leading centre for research, leading to the establishment of the Music for Health Research Centre (MHRC) in 2007.

Members of the MHRC have many years of experience in clinical practice in a variety of fields, which is reflected in their publications and research interests. You'll find a list of major publications below.

Since the beginning of music therapy at the University, we have also conducted various research projects and produced a number of videos, as well as supervising both MA and PhD projects.

Our research areas include:

  • older people, including dementias and Alzheimer's disease
  • younger populations within child adolescent and young adult psychiatry particularly pervasive developmental disorders and personality disorders

Envisioning the Future

The unique publication Envisioning the Future arose from The International Music Therapy Consortium public event held in March 2015 at Temple University USA. The aim is to summarise international research outcomes and future priorities in music therapy in 17 different subject areas. Anglia Ruskin University is a member of this International Consortium, and our own Professors Amelia Oldfield, Jorg Fachner and Helen Odell-Miller presented at the conference. Their chapters on music therapy and autism, music therapy and neuroscience, music therapy and forensics (criminal justice) respectively were authored as outcomes of the conference and are published in this volume.


Current publications

Baker, F., Wigram, T., and Gold, C. (2005) 'The effects of a song-singing programme on the affective speaking intonation of people with traumatic brain injury'. Brain Injury 19(7),519-528.

Baker, F., & Wigram, T. (2005) Songwriting: method, techniques & clinical applications for music therapy clinicians, educators and students. London: Jessica Kingsley.

Bonde, L., Nygaard- Pedersen, I., and Wigram, T (2001) Når Ord ikke Slår Til: En håndbog i Musikterapiens teori og praksis i Danmark. KLIM: Århus. (Music Therapy:When words are not enough. A handbook of Music Therapy Theory and Practice in Denmark).

Carter, C., and Oldfield, A. (2002) 'A music therapy group to assist clinical diagnoses in child and family psychiatry' in: A. Davies and E. Richards (eds), Group work in music therapy. London: Jessica Kingsley pp. 149-163.

Cass, H., Reilly, S., Owen, L., Wisbeach, A., Weekes, L., Slonims, V., Wigram, T., and Charman, T (2003) 'Findings from a multi-disciplinary clinical case series of females with Rett Syndrome'. Developmental Medicine & Child Oncology, 45 : 325-337.

Compton-Dickenson, S., Odell-Miller, H., and Adlam, J. (2012) Forensic music therapy: a treatment for men and women in secure hospital settings. London: Jessica Kingsley. In press expected publication date October 2012

Gold C., Wigram T & Elefant C (2006) 'Music therapy for autistic spectrum disorder (Cochrane Review)', The Cochrane Library, Issue 2, 2006. Chichester, UK: John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Gold, C., Heldal, T.O., Dahle, T., & Wigram, T. (2005). 'Music therapy for schizophrenia and schizophrenia-like illnesses'.(Review) The Cochrane Library. Issue 2

Gold, C., Wigram, T., & Voracek, M. (2007) 'Effectiveness of music therapy for children and adolescents with psychopathology: A quasi-experimental design'. Psychotherapy Research 17(3): 292-300.

Grocke, D., & Wigram ,T., (2006) Receptive methods in music therapy: techniques and clinical applications for music therapy clinicians, educators and students London: Jessica Kingsley.

Haire, N. And Oldfield, A. (2009) 'Adding Humour to the Music Therapist's tool-kit: Reflections on its Role in Child Psychiatry' British Journal of Music therapy, 23(1), 27-34

Holmes, J.; Oldfield, A. and Polichroniadis, M. (2011 ) Creating Change for Complex Children and their Families; A Multi-Disciplinary Approach to Multi-Family Work. Jessica Kingsley Publishers.

Jones, A., and Oldfield, A. (1999) 'Sharing sessions with John', in J Hibben (ed). Inside Music Therapy: Client Experiences,. Philiadelphia: Barcelona Publishers, pp. 165-171.

Loth, H. (2008) 'Music therapy groups for families with a learning disabled toddler: Bridging some gaps' in A. Oldfield and C. Flower, (eds) Music Therapy with Children and their Families, London: Jessica Kingsley

Loth, H (2006) 'How Gamelan Music Has Influenced Me as a Music Therapist: A Personal Account' in Voices: A World Forum for Music Therapy, Web essay

Loth, H. (2002) 'There's no getting away from anything in here: A music therapy group within an inpatient setting for adults with eating disorders' in A. Davies and E. Richards (eds), Music Therapy and Group Work. London: Jessica Kingsley.

Loth, H. (1996) 'Music therapy in forensic psychotherapy - crime psychodynamics and the offender patient' in C. Cordess and M Cox (eds), Crime, psychodynamics and the offender patient, London: Jessica Kingsley.

Odell-Miller, H. (1988) 'A music therapy approach in mental health' in Psychology of Music and Music Education, 16:62-70.

Odell-Miller, H. (1991) 'The experience of one man with schizophrenia' in K. Bruscia, (ed), Case Studies in Music Therapy, Pennsylvania: Barcelona Publishers.

Odell-Miller, H. (1995) 'Why provide music therapy in the community for adults with mental health problems?', British Journal of Music Therapy, 9, (1), 4-10.

Odell-Miller, H. (1999) 'Investigating the value of music therapy in psychiatry: outcome related to reasons for referral' in A. Wigram and J. de Backer, (eds). Clinical Applications of Music Therapy in Psychiatry. London: Jessica Kingsley.

Odell-Miller, H., Westacott, M., Hughes, P., Mortlock, D., and Binks, C., (2001) An Investigation into the Effectiveness of the Arts Therapies (Art Therapy, Dramatherapy, Music Therapy, Dance Movement Therapy) by measuring symptomatic and significant life change for people between the ages of 16-65 with continuing mental health problems, Cambridge: Anglia Polytechnic University and Addenbrooke's NHS Trust joint publication

Odell-Miller, H. (2001) 'Music therapy and its relationship to psychoanalysis' in Y. Searle, and I. Streng (eds). Where Analysis Meets the Arts. London: Karnac

Odell-Miller, H. (2002) 'One man's journey and the importance of time: music therapy in an NHS day centre' in A. Davies and E. Richards (eds). Music Therapy and Group Work, London: Jessica Kingsley

Odell-Miller, H. (2002) 'Musical narratives in music therapy treatment for dementia' in L. Bunt and S. Hoskyns, (eds). The Handbook of Music Therapy London: Routledge

Odell-Miller, H. (2003) 'Are words enough?' in L. King and R. Randall, (eds). The Future of Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy, London: Whurr .

Odell-Miller, H. (2005) Book Review of 'Between couch and piano: psychoanalysis, music, art and neuroscience: G. Rose' in Psychodynamic Practice, Volume 11;part 4, pp. 459-463.

Odell-Miller, H., Hughes, P. and Westacott, M., (2006) 'An investigation into the effectiveness of the arts therapies for adults with continuing mental health problems' in Psychotherapy Research 16 (1), 122-139.

Odell-Miller, H (2007) 'The practice of music therapy for adults with mental health problems: the relationship between diagnosis and clinical method', PhD thesis, Aalborg University, Denmark.

Odell-Miller, H and Richards, E (2009) Supervision of music therapy: a theoretical and practical handbook. London: Routledge

Odell-Miller, H. (2011) Introduction to Music Therapy and Psychiatry. On line module published by The Royal College of Psychiatrists.

Odell-Miller, H. (2011) Value of Music Therapy for people with personality disorders July 2011 | Volume 14 | Number 10.

Oldfield, A. (1995) 'Communicating through music - the balance between following and initiating' in T. Wigram, R. West and B. Saperston, (eds.), The art and science of music therapy: a handbook, USA: Harwood Academic Publishers, pp. 226-237.

Oldfield, A., Macdonald, R. and Nudds, J. (1999) Training as a music therapist: the MA in music therapy at APU, Commendation by the Royal Television Society, East Anglia, Non-Broadcast Video of the Year (2000-2001), Training video produced by Anglia Polytechnic University, available from the British Association for Music Therapy.

Oldfield, A. (1999) 'Listening, the first step towards communicating through music' in P. Milner, and B. Carolin (eds.) Time to listen to Children, London: Routledge , pp. 188-199.

Oldfield, A. (2000) 'Music therapy as a contribution to the diagnosis made by the staff team in child and family psychiatry - an initial description of a methodology that is still emerging through clinical practice' in T. Wigram (ed), Assessment and evaluation in the arts therapies. Herts: Harper House Publications, pp.93-101.

Oldfield, A., MacDonald, R. and Nudds, J. (2000) Music therapy for children on the autistic spectrum. Training video produced by Anglia Polytechnic University, available from the British Association for Music Therapy.

Oldfield, A. and Lucy Bunce, L. (2001) 'Mummy can play too... - short term music therapy with mothers and young children' British Journal of Music Therapy, Vol 15, No 1 pp.27-36.

Oldfield, A. (2001) 'Three music therapy research projects: an emerging methodology' in J. Robarts (ed.) Music Therapy Research: growing perspectives in theory and practice. London: BSMT Publications, pp. 34-41.

Oldfield, A. and Nudds, J. (2002) Joshua and Barry - Music therapy with a partially sighted little boy with cerebral palsy, Winner of the Royal Television Society, East Anglia, Non-Broadcast Video of the Year (2002-2003) Award, Training video produced by Anglia Polytechnic University, available from the British Association for Music Therapy.

Oldfield, A., Bunce, L. and Adams, M. (2003) 'An investigation into short-term music therapy with mothers and young children', British Journal of Music Therapy, Vol 17, No 1, pp. 26-45.

Oldfield, A. (2004) Music therapy with children on the autistic spectrum, approaches derived from clinical practice and research PhD thesis available from Anglia Ruskin University.

Oldfield, A. and Franke C. (2005) 'Improvised songs and stories in music therapy diagnostic assessments at a unit for child and family psychiatry - a music therapist's and a psychotherapist's perspective' in T.Wigram and F. Baker (eds.), Songwriting, methods, techniques and clinical applications for music therapy clinicians, educators and students. London: Jessica Kingsley.

Oldfield, A. and Nudds, J. (2005) The Croft - a unit for child and family psychiatry in Cambridge Training video produced by Anglia Polytechnic University, available from the British Association for Music Therapy.

Oldfield, A. (2006) Interactive music therapy, a positive approach - music therapy at a child development centre, London: Jessica Kingsley.

Oldfield, A. (2006) Interactive music therapy in child and family psychiatry - clinical practice, research and teaching, London: Jessica Kingsley.

Oldfield, A. and Flower, C. eds. (2008) Music Therapy with Children and their Families. Jessica Kingsley Publishers.

Oldfield, A. ( 2008) 'Supervision of Music Therapists Working with Children in Schools' in H. Odell-Miller and E. Richards (eds) Supervision of Music Therapy, Routledge.

Oldfield, A. (2008) 'Providing Support and Working in Partnership; Music Therapy with Pre-school Children and their Parents at a Child Development Centre' in A. Oldfield and C. Flower (eds) Music Therapy with Children and their Families. Jessica Kingsley Publishers.

Oldfield, A. (2011) 'Exploring Issues of Control through Interactive Improvised Music Making' in T.Meadows (ed) Developments in Music Therapy Practice: Case Examples, Barcellona Publishers, U.S.A.

Oldfield, A (2011) 'Parents' Perceptions of Being in Music Therapy with their Children' in J.Edwards (ed) Music in Parent-Infant Programmes, Oxford University Press.

Oldfield, A (2011 / 2012) 'Introduction' in Music Therapy in Schools: Working with Children of all Ages in Mainstream and Special Education, London, Jessica Kingsley Publishers.

Pool, J. and Odell-Miller H. (2011) 'Aggression in music therapy and its role in creativity with reference to personality disorder'. In The Arts in Psychotherapy. 38 (3) 169-177.

Richards, E, Davies, A and Barwick, N.(2014) Group Music Therapy:a Group Analytic Approach London: Routledge

Richards, E., and Davies, A. (1997) 'Music therapy in acute psychiatry; our experience of working as co-therapists in a group for patients from two neighbouring wards' British Journal of Music Therapy 13, 2, 53-59.

Richards, E and Davies. A. (2002) Music therapy and group work, London: Jessica Kingsley.

Richards, E. (1999) 'A response to Esme Towse' British Journal of Music Therapy 15, 1, (1999).

Richards, E. (2007) 'What bit of my head is talking now?: music therapy with people with learning disabilities and mental illness' in , T. Watson, (ed.) Music therapy with adults with learning disabilities. London: Jessica Kingsley.

Schaverien, J. and Odell-Miller, H. (2005) 'The arts therapies' in G.Gabbard, J.Beck and J.Holmes, eds. Oxford Textbook of Psychotherapy (pp. 87-95). Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Shipley, A. Odell-Miller, H. (2011) 'The Role of Music Therapy for Anxious Adolescent School Refusers: Identity and the Self' British Journal of Music Therapy. In Press. Expected publication date June 2012.

Tomlinson, J. Derrington, P and Oldfield, A. (2012) Music Therapy in Schools:. Working with Children of all Ages in Mainstream and Special Education, London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers.

Wigram, T. (2002) 'Indications in music therapy: evidence from assessment that can identify the expectations of music therapy as a treatment for Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD): meeting the challenge of evidence based practice'. British Journal of Music Therapy 16, (1) 11-28.

Wigram, T. (2002) 'Assessment and clinical evaluation in music therapy' in T. Wigram, I. Nygaard Pedersen & L.O.Bonde (eds.), A comprehensive guide to music therapy: theory, clinical practice, research and training. London: Jessica Kingsley.

Wigram, T. (2002) 'Evidence based practice in music therapy' in T. Wigram, I.Nygaard Pedersen & L.O.Bonde (eds) A comprehensive guide to music Therapy: theory, clinical practice, research and training. London: Jessica Kingsley.

Wigram, T (2004) Improvisation: methods and techniques for music therapy clinicians, educators and students. London: Jessica Kingsley.

Wigram, T. (2005) 'Survey Research' in B. Wheeler & K.Bruscia (eds) Music therapy research: qualitative and quantitative methods (2nd Edition). Phoenixville: Barcelona Publishers.

Wigram, T (2005) 'Songwriting methods - similarities and differences: developing a working model' in F. Baker & T.Wigram (eds), Songwriting: methods, techniques and clinical cases for music therapy clinicians, educators and students. London: Jessica Kingsley.

Wigram, T. (2006) 'Musical creativity in children with cognitive and social Impairments'. in I. Deliege & G. Wiggins (eds.) Musical creativity: multidisciplinary research in theory and practice, Psychology Press: Taylor and Francis.

Wigram, T., Nygaard Pedersen, I.,& Bonde, L.O. (2002) A comprehensive guide to Music Therapy: theory, clinical practice, research and training. London: Jessica Kingsley.

Wigram, T & Lawrence, M (2005) 'Music Therapy as a tool for assessing hand use and communicativeness in children with Rett Syndrome'. Brain and Development 27, S95-S96.

Wigram, T & Gold, C. (2006) 'Research evidence and clinical applicability of music therapy for autism spectrum disorder', Child Care: Health and Development 32, 5, 535-542.

Wigram, T & Elefant, C (2007) 'Therapeutic dialogues in music: nurturing musicality of communication in children with autistic spectrum disorder and Rett Syndrome' in C. Trevarthen and S. Malloch, (eds) Communicative Musicality. OUP (In press)

Wigram, T & Wosch, T (2007) 'Microanalysis in music therapy: a comparison of different models and methods and their application in clinical practice, research and teaching music therapy' in T. Wosch & T. Wigram (eds.) Microanalysis: methods, techniques and applications for clinicians, researchers, educators and students London: Jessica Kingsley.

Wosch, T. & Wigram, T. (2007) Microanalysis: methods, techniques and applications for clinicians, researchers, educators and students, London: Jessica Kingsley.