For me, the last quarter of 2003 was filled with international and especially European perspectives on teaching and research. Beside the teaching and the research at my university in Magdeburg (Germany) I've been teaching and giving papers in Ukraine, Austria and Denmark. But Europe was also always a part of my thinking at my university. One point is: I came back from my teaching in Ukraine together with two Ukraine students, now they are guest students for one year in Magdeburg. Europe is living here on the level of student exchange, which will bring a lot of intercultural perspectives to every program. (One year earlier this exchange was realized between Belgium and my university. These students gave very interesting and important feedbacks, also for the thinking about different programs).
The other point is: Together with colleagues I develop new study course programs. Before 2006 German study courses have to become bachelor and master programs. This will end the current German system of the academic degree "Diplom-Musiktherapeut/in" (which have existed for about twenty years) with four year undergraduate study courses or two to three year postgraduate study courses in music therapy at German universities. The first German master course of music therapy did start its work in Frankfurt am Main one year ago.
A very important part of this change is the use of the ECTS (European Credit point Transfer System). With the use of the ECTS a totally new possibility will be open for every German and European student. She or he can do one part of her or his study course at one European university, and another part at another university wherever in Europe. This opens very new perspectives for the students in Europe and this also demands a very new thinking for our teaching. Of course we have to communicate with colleagues all over Europe for this project. And of course we in the future have to work much more with thought "inputs" from students who will use this opportunity and bring a music therapy thinking from one university to another. The exchange of ideas will not only happen by the visits of one or two guest teachers. The students will regularly bring ideas in a different way -from the perspective of the students- into the study courses. And of course we have to be tolerant toward all the programs acknowledging ECTS-points from the other universities.
From my point of view this European perspective can be a very important step into an even new level of music therapy, may be also into a new professional level. This time you can see that study courses and their students are also profiled by single personalities of teachers of this program. Our study courses are small, with small numbers of lecturers if you compare them with other subjects. In the new perspective of ECTS -a more quantitative perspective-, the students have the chance to learn different programs of music therapy, and to get to know more different personalities of lecturers who give their individual profile to their program. Between the worlds of the different programs and the different personalities they can learn and find music therapy as their subject. In the end the input of students who use this chance will be a very important part of the profile of each study course. The logic conclusion of these thoughts is, that our subject music therapy could be stronger learned between different perspectives. But will that involve a loss of the very important individual item of our subject?
I don't think so. During my guest teaching in the PhD-course at Aalborg University (Denmark) I was touched by a very broad range of theoretical and individual perspectives represented within a study course, and at the same time I did feel a very warm and tolerant atmosphere. A European or worldwide study course still is living here. Students and teachers from all over Europe and from all over the world are studying and teaching here. They do this very intensive and the common interest is still music therapy from very different theoretical approaches, research perspectives and individual perspectives. From my point of view my conclusion was that we need different theoretical and really different individual perspectives to be really aware of the individual item of music therapy in a very high and professional level. Between the different qualities of this very broad range of differences a scientific quality could really be developed and discussed, also between different theory models and individual profiles.
This idea of the development of European perspectives within a single study course did realize the remedial pedagogy of the Magdeburg colleagues of mine. They developed, together with six universities from all over Europe, a European master program. Inputs from all over Europe will be given not only via ECTS. They are given even to all students within a single study course. That is the second possibility of the European perspectives beside the possibilities of the ECTS. Should we also think in music therapy about such possibilities? I think we should use these possibilities. In some details they loose something. But they can win a lot. This last side seems to be worth to start also such programs.
Bloemers, Wolf & Wisch, Fritz-Helmut (2002) (Ed.): European Module on Social Inclusion. Frankfurt am Main.
Ivannikova, Mariya & Wosch, Thomas (2003): Modern Technologies in Teaching Music Therapy [online]. Voices: A World Forum for Music Therapy. Retrieved January 5, 2004, from http://www.voices.no/discussions/discm10_02.html
Wigram, Tony & Nygaard Pedersen, Inge & Bonde, Lars O. (2002): A Comprehensive Guide to Music Therapy. London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers
Wosch, Thomas (2003): Music Therapy in Germany [online]. Voices: A World Forum for Music Therapy. Retrieved January 5, 2004, from http://www.voices.no/country/monthgermany_march2003.html
Wosch, Thomas (2004). Between the Worlds - In the Heart of Europe and Music Therapy Between the Worlds - In the Heart of Europe and Music Therapy. Voices: A World Forum for Music Therapy. Retrieved May 15, 2013, from http://testvoices.uib.no/?q=fortnightly-columns/2004-between-worlds-heart-europe-and-music-therapy