Melodic Intonation Therapy
Melodic Intonation Therapy (MIT) is a method for the rehabilitation of persons with nonfluent aphasia who present with severely restricted verbal output. MIT emphasizes the use of rhythm and prosody to elicit verbal output. Stimulus items are high-probability words, phrases, and sentences that are functional and meaningful to the person.
For over 200 years, it has been known that most patients with severe aphasia are capable of singing more fluently than they speak. This idea inspired aphasiologists to use rhythm and music to stimulate language production. Instead of singing popular songs, clinicians recommended using functional words and sentences attached to rhythmic patterns. Formal studies of this approach to aphasia therapy completed in the 1970s (Albert et al. 1973) led to the development of the MIT Technique (Helm-Estabrooks et al. 1989).
Rationale or Underlying Theory
Researchers have hypothesized that language and musical functions associated...
References and Readings
- Al-Janabi, S., Nickels, L. A., Sowman, P. F., Burianova, H., Merrett, D. L., & Thompson, W. F. (2014). Augmenting melodic intonation therapy with non-invasive brain stimulation to treat impaired left-hemisphere function: two case studies. Frontiers in Psychology, 5, 37.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
- Helm-Estabrooks, N., Nicholas, M., & Morgan, A. (1989). Melodic intonation therapy manual. San Antonio: Special Press.Google Scholar
- Sparks, R. (2001). Chap. 31. Melodic intonation therapy. In R. Chapey (Ed.), Language intervention strategies in aphasia and related neurogenic communication disorders (4th ed., pp. 703–717). Philadelphia: Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins.Google Scholar
- Van Der Meulen, I., Van De Sandt-Koenderman, M. W., Heijenbrok, M. H., Visch-Brink, E., & Ribbers, G. M. (2016). Melodic intonation therapy in chronic aphasia: Evidence from a pilot randomized controlled trial. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 10, 533. https://doi.org/10.3389/fnhum.2016.00533CrossRefGoogle Scholar