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Date of Award


Document Type

Thesis - Pacific Access Restricted

Degree Name

Master of Arts (M.A.)


Music Therapy

First Advisor

David A. Wolfe

First Committee Member

Audree A. O'Connell

Second Committee Member

Ruth V. Brittin

Third Committee Member

Lydia V. Flasher


The purpose of the current investigation was to examine the efficacy of a music therapy protocol on mood states and levels of group cohesiveness in adult oncology patients. Eleven oncology patients in two groups (ages 30 to 84 years) took part in the study over a ten-week period of time (ten participants completed the study). During that period, participants took part in eight music therapy sessions consisting of two types of interventions: 1) four "music making" sessions (where the mechanism for change included the process of making music) and 2) four "music responding" sessions (where the mechanism included the process of responding to music). The two types of music therapy sessions and their effectiveness on improving mood states and group cohesiveness were examined. The Profile of Mood States- Short Form (POMS-SF) was used to assess changes in participants' mood states. A content analysis, attendance records, and a questionnaire were used to assess levels of group cohesiveness. Results showed significant improvement in mood state scores (from pre session levels to post sessions levels) after involvement in all music therapy sessions. Similar significant findings were found within each of the "music making" and "music responding" conditions but no differences were found when comparisons were made between those conditions. No statistically significant effects were found with respect to group cohesiveness measures. Study implications and future research directions are discussed.



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