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Music-Mediated Intervention (MMI)

Intervention that incorporates songs, melodic intonation, and/or rhythm to support learning or performance of skills/behaviors. It includes music therapy, as well as other interventions that incorporate music to address target skills.

Evidence Based
Ages: Skip to Evidence

Steps for Implementation

Note: This practice is one of five strategies newly identified as an evidence-based practice (EBP) in the most recent literature review and report on EBPs published in 2020 by the National Clearinghouse for Autism Evidence and Practice (NCAEP). As stated on the TARGET page on research, TSLAT aligns its intervention content with the AFIRM modules created and published by the National Professional Development Center on Autism Spectrum Disorders (NPDC) at the University of North Carolina’s Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute (FPG). The FPG Autism Team is currently developing new AFIRM modules to reflect the recent research and address the five new EBPs which are: 1) Augmentative and Alternative Communication, 2) Behavioral Momentum Intervention, 3) Direct Instruction, 4) Music-Mediated Intervention, and 5) Sensory Integration®. Once the new AFIRM modules are published, TSLAT will update the TARGET intervention pages for these EBPs, including steps for implementation and a webinar on each new EBP.

Research and Outcomes

Research Summary

Age Range: 0-14

Skills: Communication, social, play, school readiness, adaptive/self-help, challenging/interfering behavior, motor

Settings: Home, school, community

Evidence Rating: Evidence Based

The information found in the Research Summary table is updated following a literature review of new research and these ages, skills, and settings reflects information from this review.

Outcomes Matrix

The Outcomes Matrix shows outcome areas by age for which this evidence based practice is effective
Age: 0-5 6-14 15-22
Challenging/Interfering Behavior Yes Yes
Communication Yes Yes
Joint Attention
Mental Health
Motor Yes Yes
Play Yes
School Readiness Yes Yes
Social Yes Yes
More about Intervention Outcomes

Music-mediated intervention (MMI) uses music as a key feature of the intervention delivery. This includes music therapy, which occurs in a therapeutic relationship with a trained music therapist, in addition to the planned use of songs, melodic intonation, and/or rhythm to support the learning or performance of target behaviors and skills in varied contexts (Steinbrenner, et al., 2020).