Spring 2014 Discount for IMCAP-ND Products!

Hi all,

Developmental Music Health is kicking in Spring 2014 by offering a 15% DISCOUNT  for the next 7 days on all IMCAP-ND products. Beginning today, March 18th 2014, and through March 25th, we are offering a 15% discount on all  IMCAP-ND Clinical Manuals and IMCAP-ND Rating Scale purchases. This offer will ONLY last 7 days (ending March 25th).

To receive your 15% discount, simply click on the link below, choose the product that you would like to order, and then simply enter the promotional discount code: IMCAPDIR

To place your order and to find out more about the IMCAP-ND Manual, please click HERE. 

For international orders, please click HERE.

Also, if you are interested in learning more about how to applying and integrating the IMCAP-ND into your clinical practice, check out out our upcoming IMCAP-ND CMTE courses that will be offered in Maryland, New York, and Virginia! This exciting NEW 2-day course (with post-course assignments) provides music therapists with the opportunity to EARN 35 CMTE credits!



Paul Nordoff’s Thoughts on the Diminished 7 Chord

Paul NordoffHi all,

Paul Nordoff believed that the diminished 7th is one of the most important chords in music (Nordoff & Robbins, 1998). The diminished 7th brings with it so many harmonic possibilities. Therefore it is a tremendous asset for the music therapist to have at finger tips when engaging clients in musical experiences. . This post will discuss two functions of the  diminished 7th chord: 1) as a passing chord and 2) as a pivot or modulating chord (functioning as a Dominant 7th chord).

Diminished 7th as a Chromatic Passing Chord

Using the Dim 7th as a passing chord can help guide a melody, creating a bridge to the subsequent chord. This bridge can create tension, setting up the resolution for the following chord. This structure between tension and resolution is what helps the music move, breathe, fluctuate, anticipate, and provide meaning for what is about to happen. Depending how long you sustain the tension and delay resolution can alter “musical-time” and provides the clinician with a way to alter the future based on the client’s interaction. Here’s a simple example of the Dim 7th being used as a passing chord:

Diminished 7th chord being used as a passing chord

Exercise examples:

  • IM–>   I#°7  IIm7- V7à  I
  • IM–> I#°7à IIm7-  II#°7- I-  V7-  I
  • IM–> I#°7  IIm7-  II#°7- IIIm6- IV°7-  V7-  I

Functioning as a V7 Substitution

The diminished seventh chord is often used in place of a dominant 7th chord. In the key of C Major the V chord, G dominant 7th (which is made up the notes G,B,D,F) can be replaced with a G# diminished seventh chord (G#, B, D, F). In order to create chromatic movement, you can play a B diminished […]

Book Store – International Orders!

IMCAP-ND Cover SpreadDMH Music Therapy has launched an International Book Store Page. Consumers can now order items directly from the page. Please note that shipping and tax will apply. Please stay tuned for additional books coming soon!

Thanks for reading!

All the best,



IMCAP-ND CMTE Course on May 3 & 4th at Howard Community College

UnknownHi all,

I am excited to annouce a NEW IMCAP-ND CMTE Course being offered at Howard Community College in Columbia, MD on May 3rd and 4th. This 2-day course offers music therapists an opportunity to earn 35 CMTE credits while gaining an in-depth view on the practical and theoretical perspective on the IMCAP-ND. This includes musical and extra musical application, scoring techniques, data analysis, goal and report writing, and communicating results to families and professionals.

The IMCAP-ND adds to multidisciplinary, developmentally-driven ways to discern and strengthen human capacities. The ‘right brain’ is given voice in the IMCAP-ND and offers all pediatric disciplines a window into the full range of human drama.” 

-Gerard Costa, Ph.D. (Psychologist)

“… Dr. Carpente provides an invaluable resource for music therapists who provide services to people with autism and other neurodevelopmental disorders.”

Elizabeth K. Schwartz, M.A., LCAT, MT-BC, (Music Therapist)

“This clinical manual will be an indispensable tool for all music therapists who believe in the power of affect to help clients relate and communicate through the experience of musical-play.”

Cecilia Breinbauer, M.D. (Physician)




From Emotion to Comprehension: Implications for Music Therapy?

IMG_0686Hi all, after a recent discussion with colleagues regarding the the lens in which we, as therapists, assess and work with client’s specifically in the areas of affect or emotion and cognition, several questions emerged that I like to ask the good folks who follow and read this blog. I would love to hear what others think.

So, here goes::

1) is it possible for the music therapists to assess emotion or affect through a cognitive lens?

2) Is it possible to assess affect or emotion without context of an emotional experience?

3) Is it possible to assess cognition without considering emotional or effective processes? (in other words, can cognition be assessed as an isolated domain area?)

4) If any of the above are answered with “yes,” does that imply that emotion can be “taught”‘ through cognitive processes ( such as teaching a child the emotion of anger through a song that includes the theme of anger, or via a photo of an angry face).

5) Can emotion be assessed and fostered or “learned” via relational experiences that embody emotion or affect (in other words, “learning affect or emotion, through and in actual experiences)? Thoughts?

In thinking about I began to think about a terrific chapter written by Dr. Stanley Greenspan , The Affect Diathesis Hypothesis.  The chapter is taken from the ground breaking book: The First Idea: How Symbols, Language, & Intelligence Evolved from Our Primate Ancestors to Modern HumansAlthough Greenspan contextualizes that particular chapter within autism spectrum disorders, he is basing his theory on typical child development.

Thanks for reading, folks!



Scoring IMCAP-ND: Using Numbers to Understand Relational Musical-Play Between Client & Therapist

einsteinHI all,

This blog post is inspired by a recent presentation in which I provided an overview of the Individual Music-Centered Assessment Profile for Neurodevelopmental Disorders (IMCAP-ND: A Clinical Manual there appeared to be an interest and somewhat a misunderstanding pertaining to the value of the rating scale numbers. It seemed as though some of the participants had difficulty understanding the true purpose of the rating scale numbers. To me it seemed that some folks were “mixing” working paradigms and thus may have been missing how the IMCAP-ND incorporates the value of the ratings. For example, how can you make sense or meaning, in regards to assessment, of relational and emotional  experiences in musical-play if you  if you are using a cognitive lens. The IMCAP-ND was created as a means of understanding  the client from the from the perspective of looking and listening to him/her from  “ground-on-up,” within the context of relational musical-play.  Hence, it is a developmental relationship-based framework that seeks to understand how the client perceives, understands, and make music with the therapist.

That being said, the frequency scale numbers of the IMCAP-ND are basically anchors that provide the therapist with a “musical” guide pertaining to understanding a particular target response provided by the client within the context of relational musical-play. Thus, it places responsibility onto the therapist in the areas of understanding a) the constructs and operational definitions of each music domain area, b) how to provide musical experiences or opportunities (and, how many) for the client in order to assess specific target response, c) how to observe visually and via listening,  d) what is intentional in terms of the client […]

1-Day Music Therapy Conference on Assessment & Treatment Planning in Relationship-based Work

DIR-MT MalletsHi all,

For those of you interested in learning more about music therapy assessment and treatment planning in relationship-based work, The Rebecca Center for Music Therapy at Molloy College is offering a 1-day conference on October 11th, 2013: Considering Musical Dimensions in Relationship-Based Work: New Directions in Music Therapy Treatment Planning. This affordable conference will be cost $40.00 per person ($15.00 for students) and will include: six (6) presentations, a continental breakfast, lunch, and 8 CMTE credits!


Considering Musical Dimensions in Relationship-Based Work: New Directions in Music Therapy Treatment Planning

October 11, 2013


Molloy College (Suffolk Center)


 This 1-day conference will explore ideas on understanding musical dimensions in relationship-based work within the context of the Individual Music-Centered Assessment Profile for Neurodevelopmental Disorders (IMCAP-ND).

 Topics to be covered include:

  • An overview of IMCAP-ND
  • Early childhood and mental health
  • Principles of Music-Centered, Relationship-based Music Therapy Assessment
  • Clinical use of IMCAP-ND’s Scale I: Musical Emotional Assessment rating Scale
  • Clinical goal planning within a music-centered and humanistic framework
  • A microanalysis self-assessment of the music therapist through the use of IMCAP-ND

We invite you to review the agenda below and take a look at the outstanding faculty available for this conference.  You can receive a total of 8 CMTE credits for attending this conference.

 1) IMCAP-ND:  A Developmental Relationship-based Framework for Assessing and Examining Musical-play interactions in Clinical Work

John A. Carpente, Ph.D., MT-BC, LCAT

2) The Musicality of the Infant-Parent Relationship and the Foundational Experiences Needed for Mental Health and Peaceful Societies

Keynote Presenter, Gerry Costa, Ph.D.

 3) Understanding our Clients as only Music Therapists Can: Principles of Music-Centered, Relationship-based Music […]

By |July 7th, 2013|IMCAP-ND, Music Therapy Assessment, Music Therapy Research, Music-Centered Music Therapy, Musical play, Relationship in Music Therapy, Uncategorized, Upcoming Events|Comments Off on 1-Day Music Therapy Conference on Assessment & Treatment Planning in Relationship-based Work

IMCAP-ND Music Therapy Assessment Facebook FORUM

FacebookHi all,

For those who are interested, I’ve recently created a brand new Facebook group for anyone interested in using the IMCAP-ND. The IMCAP-ND forum will  be a place where music therapists can ask questions, share stories and experiences, present research ideas, and express concerns regarding the IMCAP-ND and/or other assessment tools.The  forum will also be used as a place to share events, as well as  updates and/or revisions made to the IMCAP-ND protocols, procedures, and/or scales.  Click here to join the IMCAP-ND Facebook Forum. 

To learn more about the IMCAP-ND: A Clinical Manual click HERE

All the best,


An Overview of the IMCAP-ND Clinical Manual

IMCAPsoft-150x150Hi all,

For those who are interested, I’m providing the Introductory chapter from the IMCAP-ND in this blog post. Within the last week or so I’ve received many emails from music therapists asking questions pertaining to the manual, specifically about defining the three rating scales, as well as the “umbrella” of neurodevelopmental disorders. Thus, I”m including, below, the overview that describes the scales and the client groups within the “umbrella” of neurodevelopmental disorders. Thanks so much for all of your questions and please feel free to reach out if any others emerge!


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. The IMCAP-ND can be used to evaluate clients at various developmental levels and chronological ages from children to adults.

Administering the IMCAP-ND requires the therapist to improvise music experiences based on the client’s interests and musical lead, while targeting specific musical responses that are relevant to neurodevelopmental disorders. The IMCAP-ND examines musical-emotional abilities, musical cognition and perception skills, as well as musical responsiveness that deals with preferences, perceptual efficiency, and self-regulation in musical-play.

Overview of the Chapters

The IMCAP-ND manual was designed to provide music therapists with a method to assess and evaluate a client’s musical resources, strengths, challenges, and overall responsiveness (i.e., preference, efficiency, and self-regulation) in musical-play. The IMCAP-ND manual includes three interrelated rating scales, definitions and criteria of target responses, assessment protocols, musical-clinical and interpersonal procedures, instructions for clinical observation and listening, procedures for supportive interventions, clinical considerations, and descriptions and rationale for clinical strategies and techniques.

Chapter 1

Chapter 1 provides the […]

Noah Potvin writes on Relationship Development During Prebereavement with Longterm Caregivers

Hello all,

If you’ve been following this blog you may have noticed that I have been re-posting all of the wonderfully written posts dealing with concept of relationship in music therapy. This topic  (relationship in music therapy) has recently surfaced many times on several Facebook forums and has generated some rich dialogue between music therapists working in a variety of clinical settings.  The recent dialogue has inspired me to dive into my blog archives and dig up several posts on relationship in music therapy. I want to again thank my talented colleagues for sharing their work and ideas on this blog: Dr. Brian AbramsDr. Nancy JacksonSuzannah Scott-Moncrieff,   and Noah Potvin. 

In this post, Noah Potvin shares his thoughts and ideas on relationship in end-of-life care.  Thanks in advance for reading and I encourage you to please feel free to share your thoughts!

Relationship Development During Prebereavement with Longterm Caregivers


Found you in a corner
Why’d you close your eyes?
I see you

 Longterm caregivers (individuals who have been the primary caregiver for at least 10 years) often experience a profound isolation from themselves and their various communities that can evolve, especially when the carereceipient received end-of-life care, into an existential crisis that calls into question their life trajectory. Longterm caregivers are often thrust into this role due to sudden and unforeseen developments, e.g. devastating accidents, massive CVAs, sudden diagnoses of late stage asymptomatic diseases (such as pancreatic cancer), and diagnoses of diseases that frequently manifest midlife (such as MS or ALS) or have an early onset (such as Alzheimers). As suddenly and dramatically as these developments alter the logistics of daily routines […]