Faculty Spotlight


Dr. Sheri Robb

RESPECT Center Core Faculty Sheri Robb, PhD, MT-BC and Dr. Debra Burns were featured scientific speakers at the first face-to-face meeting hosted by the National Institutes of Health for the purpose of learning more about the music therapy profession and research specific to cancer patients. In attendance were representatives from a wide range of NIH Institutes and Centers, the American Music Therapy Association, Walther Reed Hospital, the VA Medical Center, and the National Endowment for the Arts. The meeting/seminar was initiated by the National Cancer Institute and titled "Music Therapy Research in Oncology: Therapeutic Outcomes, Mechanisms, and Directions for Future Research". The meeting focused on significant music therapy research and evidence-based practice and was regarded by Dr. Robb as "a highly memorable experience and we look forward to seeing what unfolds as a result of the meeting, which we hope will lead to some wonderful new opportunities and relationships". Dr. Robb is a board-certified music therapist with degrees in music therapy and early childhood special education, as well as having completed a postdoctoral fellowship in behavioral oncology and cancer control funded by the National Cancer Institute and a KL2 career development award through the Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute (CTSI). Dr. Robb's research focuses on development and testing of music-based palliative care interventions to diminish symptom distress and improve positive health outcomes in pediatric/adolescent cancer patients and their parents. Her Contextual Support Model of Music Therapy has guided development of two music-based palliative care interventions and a parent intervention that are being tested for children/adolescents with cancer and their parents. Dr. Robb's program of research is currently funded by the NCI, with previous funding through the NINR, CTSI, and IU RESPECT center.

Dr. Robb has published in a variety of music therapy, nursing, and oncology journals including the journal CANCER, is internationally recognized for her work in pediatric music therapy, and is Editor for the Journal of Music Therapy.


Past Spotlights