Enhancing Social Skills in Autism Through Music

  • Alessandro AntoniettiEmail author
  • Barbara Colombo
  • Braelyn R. DeRocher


Music treatments addressed to individuals with autism are usually aimed at enhancing social skills. To do so, musical activities are paired with a series of underlying competencies to be acquired. This chapter focuses on some of these basic competencies, such as the detection of the congruence between the emotional valence of music and the mood states it elicits, the identification of the relationships between the sounds (hearing) and the motor acts (vision) which produced them, the ability to mirror the partner’s mental state through the production of musical acts. Experimental findings supporting the notion that these basic competencies can be acquired or refined by people with autism, as well as the outcomes of music treatments focused on those skills, are reported and discussed in the chapter.


Autism Music therapy Social skills Emotions Assessment Intervention 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alessandro Antonietti
    • 1
    Email author
  • Barbara Colombo
    • 2
  • Braelyn R. DeRocher
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyCatholic University of the Sacred HeartMilanItaly
  2. 2.Department of Psychology, Division of Education and Human StudiesChamplain CollegeBurlingtonUSA
  3. 3.Department of Psychology, Division of Education and Human StudiesChamplain CollegeBurlingtonUSA

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