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Stella Compton Dickinson Final thesis.pdf (5.06 MB)

A feasibility trial of group cognitive analytic music therapy in secure hospital settings

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posted on 2023-08-30, 14:10 authored by Stella J. Compton Dickinson
There are no large-scale outcome studies of music therapy in secure hospital settings for people who have committed serious offences. These patients have a right to expect evidence-based multi-disciplinary treatment (Duggan et al. 2006); NICE (2010). Music therapy therefore should take a form which can be integrated into the treatment pathway. A single site implementation of a mixed-methods patient preference randomised controlled trial investigated the clinical effectiveness of a manualised music therapy model called Group Cognitive Analytic Music Therapy (G-CAMT). This context-specific, time limited intervention incorporates theories from Group Analysis (Foulkes 1964) and Cognitive Analytic Therapy (Ryle and Kerr 2003). The central research question was ‘Is G-CAMT feasible and effective for offenders in a secure multi-disciplinary treatment setting?’ The research process followed the Medical Research Council framework for developing and evaluating complex interventions (Campbell et al. 2000, 2007). Twenty patients were recruited; those expressing no preference were randomised to treatment or control arms. The two music therapists and the principal investigator were masked to their allocation status. Those in the treatment arm were allocated to one of two treatment groups of five, each run individually by one of the music therapists. Each group had sixteen ninety minute weekly sessions with followup at eight weeks. Treatment and control groups received standard care. The primary measure was the Person’s Relating to Others Questionnaire (Birtchnell and Evans 2004) Secondary measures were the Basic Empathy Scale (Jolliffe and Farrington 2006a), The Multi-Scale Dissociation Inventory (Briere, 2002) and an observational measure, the Chart of Interpersonal Reactions in Closed Living Environments (Blackburn and Glasgow, 1993). Quantitative data from these measures were examined for associations with qualitative data from semi-structured interviews administered to the music therapists and analyzed using Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (Smith 2009) Findings from the results of the primary measure demonstrated statistically significant (Mann Whitney U: p<.05) reductions in favour of the treatment group compared to the control, in intrusive, restrictive and possessive behaviors and helpless or self-denigrating behaviours. There were improvements over time within the treatment group in the domains of sociability and hostility (Friedman Test :p<.04). The use of a manual was shown to help the music therapists manage the risk of violence without constraining their creativity. Two years after the end of the treatment 78% of treatment participants had moved to conditions of lower security over a mean period of 19 months compared with 66% of control subjects over a mean period of 25.5 months. The thesis concludes by situating G-CAMT amongst contemporary music therapy models.



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