Continuing Professional Development

Continuing Professional Development (CPD) serves to ensure the continual development of a music therapist’s professional skills in order to provide the best possible treatment for their patients.

CPD is an important process on the professional path as it contributes to quality and development of the service provided. In some countries it is also part of the certification and recertification processes.

The different stages of professional development of music therapy across the member countries of the EMTC make the definition of these criteria complex. General guidelines are presented here that can be adapted by each national professional association to the circumstances of the individual country. The main goal of these guidelines is to provide a supportive framework to all music therapists and music therapy associations regarding CPD requirements.

General Guidelines For Continuing Professional Development

1) CPD should be mandatory. Continuing Professional Development is one of the ways in which music therapists continue to develop their skills and learn new skills throughout their careers as health professionals. CPD values reflection on and development of skills gained in clinical practice and through additional training in order to promote the best quality service to service users.

2) It is recommended that each country have an authority responsible for monitoring/approving/evaluating CPD requirements, connecting them to the recertification process of that country.

If a country does not have a certification board or an authority responsible for this process, the CPD process should be monitored by its professional music therapy association or regulatory body.

3) The European Music Therapy Standards should include CPD recommendations.

4) A system of competencies (points, credits or standards) should be determined by each country.
Considering the stages of professional development of music therapy across the member countries of the EMTC, it is proposed that each country adopt a system of counting/validation applicable to their individual circumstances. This system serves to measure the events/moments that are part of the CPD process.

5) The recommendations should specify:

  • The numbers of hours, credits or the standard required;
  • The attribution of a specific amount of points/credits/standards to specific CPD initiatives;
  • The time period between each cycle of recertification (if applicable);
  • The mixture of different activities recommended to be appropriate for the development of the individual’s current or future clinical practice;
  • The impact of the CPD activities upon both the individual’s practice and the benefits for their service users;
  • CPD courses offered in any member country of EMTC should clearly define the number of points/ hours/ credits and types of competencies to be developed so that music therapists can receive the certification of that country.

6) For more information about CPD criteria, we advise music therapists to contact the professional association or regulatory body in their individual countries.

Jackie Robarts leading a weekend of CPD for music therapists from the Baltics in 2018

Download CPD Guidelines as PDF