Music Therapist Salary (United States)

With more than half of Music Therapists reporting fewer than five years of experience, the field is full of relatively green workers making an average of $42,387 per year. Compensation generally starts at $25,098 and does not exceed $72,661 per year. Career length and geography each impact pay for this group, with the former having the largest influence. Unfortunately, some people in this line of work are without benefits—about a third lack coverage. On the flip side, more than half have medical insurance and more than half receive dental plans. Job satisfaction is reported as high by the vast majority of workers. The information for this snapshot was generated by responses to the PayScale salary survey.
Music Therapist Salary (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$24,285 - $56,086
(Median)
24K
30K
39K
48K
56K
MEDIAN: $39,337
10%
25%
50%
75%
90%
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Music Therapist Salary (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$14.56 - $50.21
(Median)
15
19
30
50
MEDIAN: $23.00
10%
25%
75%
90%
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National Salary Data

 (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$25K$50K$75K
Salary
$24,285 - $56,086  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $1,927  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$25,098 - $72,661  
PayScale
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 3 Sep 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 139
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$17$34$51
Hourly Rate
$14.56 - $50.21  
   
Overtime
$0.00 - $36.50  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$50K$100K$150K
Bonus
$0.00 - $1,927  
   
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$25,098 - $72,661  
PayScale
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 3 Sep 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 110
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Job Description for Music Therapist

  • Develop treatment plan with instrumental and vocal music strategies based on assessment, interests and objectives of therapy.
  • Assess patients' development, abilities, personality, interests and conflicts.
  • Prepare and submit patients' reactions and progress reports, confer with treatment team.
  • Encourage patients with special needs and circumstances to express themselves creatively with music.

Music Therapist Job Listings

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Pay by Experience Level for Music Therapist

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
Salaries start at $39,769, which grows to $49K after five to 10 years. Those with one to two decades of experience under their belt tend to see salaries around $51K. After 20 years in the field, Music Therapists see a slip in salary, bringing in an average of $49K. Experienced employees who have 10-20 years of experience make up 18 percent of the workforce; inexperienced individuals who have been working for less than one year comprise 5 percent, and senior people with more than 20 years under their belt fill out the remaining 6 percent. Between one and nine years of experience is the norm for people in this field—most of those surveyed fit this bill.

Pay Difference By Location

National Average
$42,000
Indianapolis
up arrow 7%
Cleveland
up arrow 17%
Larger circles over a city indicate a job is popular in that location.
Cleveland ranks last in the field for pay, reporting salaries 17 percent below the national average.

Experience Affects Music Therapist Salaries

Experienced
up arrow 21%
Late-Career
up arrow 16%
Mid-Career
up arrow 15%
National Average
$42,000
Entry-Level
up arrow 6%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied Image
Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5 based on 61 votes.

Gender

Female
86%
female alumni
 
Male
14%
male alumni

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
5%
1-4 years
51%
5-9 years
20%
10-19 years
18%
20 years or more
6%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 67% dental benefits Dental: 51%
vision benefits Vision: 37% employee benefits None: 32%
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