Theses 

Group Music Therapy for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder – Yue LU

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UNIVERZITA PALACKÉHO V OLOMOUCI

Pedagogická fakulta

Doktorský studijní program / obor:
Specialization in Education / Music Theory and Education

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Yue LU

Disertační práce

Group Music Therapy for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder

Group Music Therapy for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder

Abstract: With the increasing number of children diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), the education and development of children with ASD have become topics under heated discussion. Music therapy for children with special needs is lacking of influential theoretical outcome in China due to limited resources. In either public or private schools, given the limited funding, group therapy practice would be an optimal choice. Especially in China, a developing country, effective group therapy practice would be beneficial for autistic children. This research was designed to demonstrate a practical model of group music therapy for children with Autism Spectrum disorder (ASD). Mixed methods were employed including an action research and a single-subject research. There were 5 phases of the research implementation including measurement and planning, acting, reflecting, modification and acting, and evaluation and discussion. Objects of this research were five children who were diagnosed with ASD. Their ages were from 7.5 years to 9.5 years. Other participants involved in this research included a researcher, a therapist, four class teachers, five guardians of children and an assistant. Having investigated the developmental needs of children and planed therapy sessions within two months, the researcher conducted twelve sessions of group music therapy within six weeks. Detailed process of implementing group music therapy including deciding goals and objectives, choosing and revising materials, applying methods and evaluating the group progression has been presented in the thesis. The results with ATEC score of the group indicate (1) the group got a little improvement after group music therapy; (2) there was a significant difference between male and female participants in the therapy effect; (3) there was a significant difference in the rating between class teachers and guardians. The results of every single group member with ATEC score indicate that two girls in this group gained significant improvement and other three boys achieved improvements only in several developmental areas. In summary, except for the worsening in health/physical/behavior, the improvements were evident in areas of speech, sensory/cognitive awareness and sociability. The results of interviews from the therapist, class teachers and guardians indicate every child gained different improvements at various degrees such as improvement in attending attitudes, emotional control, accepting new things, expressing actively, imitation ability and coordination. The results both of single-subject research and action research demonstrated the unique functions that group music therapies performed for children with ASD. It includes specific improvements in joint attention, communication, interpersonal interaction, cooperation, and imitation. Apart from progress as a whole group, improvements in relaxation, self-confidence, and cognition were also detected in different individuals. With the analysis of measurement results and interviews results, the researcher discussed the implications of group and individual achievements, and compared the evaluating results from class teachers and that from guardians. The result demonstrated the unique functions that group music therapies performed for children with ASD. It includes improvements in joint attention, communication, interpersonal interaction, cooperation, and imitation. Apart from progress as a whole group, improvements in relaxation, self-confidence, and cognition were also detected in different individuals. To conclude, suggestions on the practice of group music therapy for children with ASD have been proposed, including principles of session planning, goals and objectives setting, format, materials, methods and evaluations.

Abstract: With the increasing number of children diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), the education and development of children with ASD have become topics under heated discussion. Music therapy for children with special needs is lacking of influential theoretical outcome in China due to limited resources. In either public or private schools, given the limited funding, group therapy practice would be an optimal choice. Especially in China, a developing country, effective group therapy practice would be beneficial for autistic children. This research was designed to demonstrate a practical model of group music therapy for children with Autism Spectrum disorder (ASD). Mixed methods were employed including an action research and a single-subject research. There were 5 phases of the research implementation including measurement and planning, acting, reflecting, modification and acting, and evaluation and discussion. Objects of this research were five children who were diagnosed with ASD. Their ages were from 7.5 years to 9.5 years. Other participants involved in this research included a researcher, a therapist, four class teachers, five guardians of children and an assistant. Having investigated the developmental needs of children and planed therapy sessions within two months, the researcher conducted twelve sessions of group music therapy within six weeks. Detailed process of implementing group music therapy including deciding goals and objectives, choosing and revising materials, applying methods and evaluating the group progression has been presented in the thesis. The results with ATEC score of the group indicate (1) the group got a little improvement after group music therapy; (2) there was a significant difference between male and female participants in the therapy effect; (3) there was a significant difference in the rating between class teachers and guardians. The results of every single group member with ATEC score indicate that two girls in this group gained significant improvement and other three boys achieved improvements only in several developmental areas. In summary, except for the worsening in health/physical/behavior, the improvements were evident in areas of speech, sensory/cognitive awareness and sociability. The results of interviews from the therapist, class teachers and guardians indicate every child gained different improvements at various degrees such as improvement in attending attitudes, emotional control, accepting new things, expressing actively, imitation ability and coordination. The results both of single-subject research and action research demonstrated the unique functions that group music therapies performed for children with ASD. It includes specific improvements in joint attention, communication, interpersonal interaction, cooperation, and imitation. Apart from progress as a whole group, improvements in relaxation, self-confidence, and cognition were also detected in different individuals. With the analysis of measurement results and interviews results, the researcher discussed the implications of group and individual achievements, and compared the evaluating results from class teachers and that from guardians. The result demonstrated the unique functions that group music therapies performed for children with ASD. It includes improvements in joint attention, communication, interpersonal interaction, cooperation, and imitation. Apart from progress as a whole group, improvements in relaxation, self-confidence, and cognition were also detected in different individuals. To conclude, suggestions on the practice of group music therapy for children with ASD have been proposed, including principles of session planning, goals and objectives setting, format, materials, methods and evaluations.

Keywords: children with ASD, music therapy, group therapy, practice

Jazyk práce: angličtina

  • Datum vytvoření / odevzdání či podání práce: 28. 4. 2017

Obhajoba závěrečné práce

  • Vedoucí: prof. PaedDr. Jiří Luska, CSc.

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Instituce archivující a zpřístupňující práci: UNIVERZITA PALACKÉHO V OLOMOUCI, Pedagogická fakulta

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LU, Yue. Group Music Therapy for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Olomouc, 2017. disertační práce (Ph.D.). UNIVERZITA PALACKÉHO V OLOMOUCI. Pedagogická fakulta

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