Introduction to DIRFloortime for Music Therapists

This introductory course, specifically designed for music therapists, reviews the theoretical framework, scientific evidence, and scope of application of the DIRFloortime. Learn about the wonderful evidence-based Floortime approach and how it is applied to music therapy practice.

Training Purpose

This introductory training for music therapists will introduce and examine the Developmental, Individual difference, Relationship-based (DIR) model within a music therapy framework.  DIR explains a child’s developmental stages, individual differences, and the role emotion and relationships have in a child’s development. The training will present an introduction to the DIRFloortime  approach within a music therapy context, with the developmentally appropriate music therapy interactions, interventions, and practices geared to each child’s developmental profile. The DIR model is applicable for all children and the DIRFloortime approach is developmental model particularly used as an intervention for children with Autism and other developmental challenges. 

Learning Objectives

Participants successfully completing this course will be able to:

  1. Identify common features of autism and other challenges of relating and communicating
  1. Identify the key features of relationship-based approaches
  2. Explore 6 Functional Emotional Developmental Capacities (FEDCs) in the DIR® model and potential challenges that children face at each capacity
  3. Understand the “I” in DIR – individual differences and how health, sensory processing, and regulatory challenges can impact a child’s development
  4. Discuss key principles and basic strategies of Floortime
  5. Understand the role of relationship and family in the DIR® model
  6. Understand the essential role of affect as it is related to the D, the I, and the R
  7. Undertand how to carry out music therapy interventions within a DIRFloortime framework
  8. Understand how each of the four music music therapy methods can be employed within a DIR framework
  9. Understand how to assess the type of music therapy method/s is clinical warranted based on the client’s profile
  10. Understand how to conceptualize client’s, musically, within a DIR framework
  11. Exploring how the DIR 6 Functional Emotional Capacities relate to specific musical responses with regard to the Musical Emotional Assessment Rating Scale
  12. Understand the role of music as it relates to the D, I, and the R


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Completion of this course satisfies the DIR 101 course required for the DIRFloortime certification through the Interdisciplinary Council on Developmental and Learning (ICDL)