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Music Therapy

Guide for students studying Music Therapy at the University of Melbourne.

Starting Research

Where and how do you start?

First your research question/s! There are books that can help:

Need a publication neither the UoM Library nor Bonus+ can supply?

Graduate students may request interlibrary loans of books and scores, and document delivery of journal articles and conference papers.

See Borrowing from other libraries

Please contact Louise Hanson-Dyer Music Library staff directly, if you are an external (blended) student. Email

The UoM flagship site for library research services:

Offering services and resources supporting the 6 stages of the research lifecycle.

is an online learning programme for university staff and graduate students, showcasing a range of digital tools that can support research activity.

It originally ran from 24 March 2014 as a series of weekly blog posts but the site remains active as a continuing resource and is periodically updated.


Starting Research - Research Tools

The Library collections offer many texts on research methods.

University of Melbourne students and staff can also access SAGE Research Methods online (also known as SRMO) , an online compendium of resources including many e-books. Search by keywords or use the  visual interface in the SRMO Methods Map


You'll need to be alert to the methodologies (also known as philosophies or research paradigms) underlying research methods. Use of the appropriate terms might be important in your literature searching.

Mainstream medical literature and reports on controlled clinical trials may be strongly positivistSage Research Methods also uses the related term objectivist.

Qualitative research studies and syntheses may encompass interpretivist, constructivist, constructionist and post-positivist approaches.

Other studies might use mixed methods or be realist or pragmatic.

Action research and best-fit framework synthesis are iterative, working through more than one cycle of assessment and discovery.

You'll need a research data management plan from the outset.

Your research data will accumulate quickly -  administrative & working files, background reading, documentation of the research process and your research outputs.


  • ethics clearance
  • information kits
  • consent forms
  • histories, clinical notes
  • survey questionnaires
  • reports
  • statistics
  • diagnostic tools
  • music
  • sound recordings
  • research literature

Issues to consider will include intellectual property considerations, storage, maintaining records & metadata, and legal & any funding mandates for long-term preservation and access.

See for tools and advice.

How can you uniquely identify a researcher and their output? 
A researcher profile identifies an individual researcher and their research publications. Helpful for both authors and their readers. Mandated or strongly recommended by some funding bodies.

See the Subject Research Guide on Researcher Profiles, Identifiers and Social Networks.

How can you assess the relative quality of a publication, journal or researcher?
Research impact is a measure of citedness or at least readership or reach of an item or author. It is often interpreted as a measure of research quality, depending on the discipline.

See the Subject Research Guide on Research Impact.

Have you published?
Use the above guides to set up your own researcher profiles and impact analysis.