Music Therapy Assessment with the IMCAP-ND: A Pilot Study
Keywords:music therapy; neurodevelopmental disorders; autism spectrum disorders; pilot study
Background: Music therapy (MT) appears to be a valuable complementary intervention for children diagnosed with neurodevelopmental conditions, namely, autism spectrum disorders (ASD), who often present cognitive, academic, communicative, and social difficulties. Music therapy has been increasingly recommended as a standard support service for communication and social interaction in this specific neuropediatric setting. Objective: The aim of this pilot study was to determine the recruitment and protocol feasibility of music therapy for autistic children and explore trends towards the clinical utility of the IMCAP-ND[i] quantitative measure on assessing the focus on sound receptions, joint attention, turn-taking, auditory perception, sensory integration, social interaction, entrainment, and empathy, as a preparation for a future study wherein we will pursue with an MT intervention assessment. Furthermore, here we use the European Portuguese translated version of the IMCAP-NDPT scales to contribute to its validation and adaptation. Methods: Five autistic children received a weekly music therapy session of approximately 45 minutes for six months, totaling a minimum of 20 and maximum of 24 completed sessions per child. The IMCAP-NDPT and the Griffiths Mental Development Scales (GMDS) scales were applied pre- and post-test. Results: We tested the research design and the session’s protocol. All participants completed MT intervention and showed increase in social-emotional capacities, cognitive and perception skills, and overall responsiveness. However, our results indicate a need to review the inclusion criteria concerning participants with a single diagnosis (ASD), previous contacts with musical instruments, and the application of standardized music therapy settings. Conclusions: The design and protocol were perceived as acceptable and feasible, though some improvements were suggested for subsequent original research, and the IMCAP-NDPT version was considered usable. Our initial findings suggest the potential of music therapy for autistic children. Further intervention with efficacy assessment through a larger-scale randomized trial is needed, considering the content based on pilot findings.
[i] The Individual Music-Centered Assessment Profile for Neurodevelopmental Disorders (IMCAP-ND) is a criterion-referenced assessment of musical interaction, communication, cognition and perception, and responsiveness in musical-play for individuals with neurodevelopmental disorders at various developmental levels and chronological ages from children to adults. It is comprised by a set of three scales: Musical Emotional Assessment Rating Scale (MEARS), Musical Cognitive/Perception Scale (MCPS) and Musical Responsiveness Scale (MRS) (Carpente, 2013).
How to Cite
Copyright (c) 2023 Marisa M. Raposo, Ana Maria Abreu, Leticia L. Dionizio, Teresa Leite, Alexandre Castro-Caldas
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Articles published prior to 2019 are subject to the following license, see: https://voices.no/index.php/voices/copyright