Music-based interventions for people with profound and multiple learning disabilities: a systematic review of the literature

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Abstract

Music is motivational, accessible and engaging for individuals with learning disabilities. Several systematic reviews have addressed the effects of music activity on people with learning disabilities; however, none has specifically reviewed the use of musical activity with people with profound and multiple learning disabilities.

This review aimed to: 1. identify peer-reviewed studies and describe the characteristics of evidence-based musical activity used with people with profound and multiple learning disabilities and 2. evaluate and analyse the effectiveness of these music-based interventions and identify gaps within current research. A systematic search was conducted in April 2021 identifying seven peer-reviewed studies which included music-based interventions with at least one person with profound and multiple learning disabilities.

Findings reveal the interventions varied in their frequency, duration and content. The outcome of most (n=6) interventions documented the development of the participants’ social skillset. Interventions were predominantly (n=6) implemented by facilitators with musical expertise. The diverse and novel nature of the reviewed studies highlights a need to expand and enhance research with this population.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Intellectual Disability
Early online date29 Apr 2022
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 29 Apr 2022

Keywords

  • interventions
  • music
  • profound intellectual/learning disabilities
  • review

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