Ecological approaches to music therapy and autism

Working with the family and community systems

Are you working with children with autism?

Are you looking to update your knowledge?

Would you like to learn new skills in assessment, program planning, parent engagement and collaboration?

Then you're in the right place!

Join Dr Grace Thompson as she outlines ecological approaches to working with children with autism and their families.

Describing ecologically oriented theories, social communication development, useful tools for engaging with parents and the use of her new 'Music in Everyday Life' assessment tool developed in conjunction with Dr Tali Gottfried.

This is an evidence-based and reflective look at how we provide family-centered programs for children with autism.

Grace speaks about her Music in Everyday Life (MEL) Assessment

Your Instructor

Dr Grace Thompson
Dr Grace Thompson

Dr Grace Thompson is a music therapist and senior lecturer at the University of Melbourne. Grace has worked with children, young people and families for over 20 years within the early childhood intervention and special education sector. In her clinical work, Grace developed a collaborative approach to music therapy practice with families guided by ecological theories and family-centred philosophy. Her research continues to explore the ways music therapists can foster relationships and social connection through participating in engaging and accessible music making. Grace is past president of the Australian Music Therapy Association and co-editor of the book “Music Therapy with Families: Therapeutic Approaches and Theoretical Perspectives”. She is currently an Associate Editor with the Nordic Journal of Music Therapy.

Get started now!

Earn 1 CMTE/CPD credit for the tutorial

then up to 3 additional credits if you complete the

Bonus Content Activities


This was such a perfectly timed course that really resonated with where I am currently at in my career. I work in private practice, and the vast majority of my client base have autism. A lot of my clients have fortnightly sessions, or have had funding significantly cut, so I've really needed some inspiration as to how I can continue their progress outside of sessions. Grace's course helped give me a deeper understanding and confidence in trying new strategies that can be easily transferred to home, and continued in between sessions. I've thoroughly enjoyed including families in my sessions more too, and I can see in them that they are really enjoying this time with their child too. This was a very practical course that I would definitely recommend to anyone working within this specialisation. Grace delivers it in such a gentle, knowledgeable and easy to understand manner that it's a pleasure to listen to. It's definitely one that I will keep revisiting! - Georgina Kittel, RMT

Frequently Asked Questions

When does the course start and finish?
The course starts now and never ends! It is a completely self-paced online course - you decide when you start and when you finish.
How long do I have access to the course?
How does lifetime access sound? After enrolling, you have unlimited access to this course for as long as you like - across any and all devices you own.
What if I am unhappy with the course?
We would never want you to be unhappy! If you are unsatisfied with your purchase, contact us in the first 30 days and we will give you a full refund.
Do I receive a completion certificate when I'm finished?
Yes you certainly do! You will automatically receive a certificate when you finish watching the tutorial. To claim certificates for your bonus content activities see the TUTORIAL SUMMARY & SUBMISSION INFO doc for specific information on claiming your CMTE/CPD credits.

For music therapists from the US & Canada this tutorial covers the following CBMT Board Certified Domains:

I. Referral, Assessment and Treatment Planning. B. Assessment. Item - 2, 3( d), 4 (b, e, h, l),. C. Interpret Assessment Information and Communicate Results. Item 3 & 5. D. Treatment Planning. Item - 1, 2 (a, b, c), 8, 10.

II. Treatment, Implementation & Termination. A. Implementation. Item - 1 (a, b, c, d, e, f, h), 2 (b, d, f, g, h, i, k, m, o, w, aa ac, ag, ak, ap, aq, av, ax, ba, bb, bd), 3 (d, f), 4 (d), 5 (a, b, e, f, g, h, i.1, q, r, s, t, u, w, x, z).

III. Ongoing Documentation and Evaluation of Treatments. A. Documentation - Item 1 & 2.. B. Evaluation - Item 8 & 9.

IV. Professional Development and Responsibilities. A. Professional Development - Item 2 & 3. B. Professional Responsibilities - Item 4 & 14.

Submit your attendance certificate and the completed bonus content activities to CBMT as non-approved self-study.