Doctor Alison Short

Doctor Alison Short

Academic Course Advisor,
Music (sohca)

Senior Lecturer In Creative Music Therapy,
Music (sohca)

Senior Lecturer In Creative Music Therapy,
Music (sohca)


As a music therapist practitioner, academic senior lecturer, and experienced health services researcher, I am passionate about research and its capacity to inform the evidence base and education, changing health care practices in the future via translational knowledge. My interests span both Music Therapy and Music Medicine. My doctoral research focused on music therapy in cardiac rehabilitation, and I have further interests across a broad range of areas including the auditory environment and public health.  I have researched and written about many areas of music therapy practice, including the specialist area of Guided Imagery and Music (Bonny Method), using both hospital based and broader community well-being approaches to the use of music in the therapeutic context.

Based on my previous extensive work as a health services researcher, my interprofessional research has related to areas such as consumer-oriented chronic disease management and cultural issues in health. I see research capacity building and knowledge dissemination in the clinical setting as fundamental to evidence based practice in both music therapy and other health-related fields.

I have further interests in research supervision and national/international research project development, and I am happy to discuss innovative thoughts and ideas. Employing qualitative, quantitative and mixed method approaches, I have produced over 60 formal publications, including articles in peer-reviewed journals (29), book chapters (4) and published refereed conference papers (12).

My research output can be found at:

This information has been contributed by Doctor Short.


  • GCULT University of New South Wales
  • PhD University of Technology, Sydney
  • MA New York University
  • BMus University of Melbourne

Professional Memberships

  • Australian Music Therapy Association (1979)

Organisational Unit (School / Division)

  • Music (sohca)
  • Music (sohca)
  • Music (sohca)


  • School Research and Higher Degrees Committee, HCA
  • Music and Imagery Association of Australia, Education and Training Committee
  • South Western Sydney Health and Arts Reference Group


Phone: (02) 47360 394
Location: C.G.18
Penrith (Kingswood)

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Current Teaching Areas

  • 100911 Music Therapy Professional Practice
  • 100914 Music Therapy Theory and Practice 2
  • 101443 Creative Music Therapy Practicum 1

Previous Teaching Areas

  • 102248 Music and Wellbeing, 2015
  • 100914 Music Therapy Theory and Practice 2, 2015
  • 100911 Music Therapy Professional Practice, 2015
  • 101443 Creative Music Therapy Practicum 1, 2016
  • 101444 Creative Music Therapy Practicum 2, 2017
  • 101445 Music Therapy Skills 1, 2016
  • 102248 Music and Wellbeing, 2016
  • 100912 Music Therapy Theory and Practice 1, 2017
  • 100914 Music Therapy Theory and Practice 2, 2017
  • 101446 Music Therapy Skills 2, 2017
  • 100911 Music Therapy Professional Practice, 2016
  • 100911 Music Therapy Professional Practice, 2017
  • 100914 Music Therapy Theory and Practice 2, 2016
  • 100911 Music Therapy Professional Practice, 2014


Chapters in Books

  • Short, A. (2015), 'Heart's work : relaxing and infilling as integral to sustained, forward movement : GIM in cardiac rehabilitation', Advanced Practice in Medical Music Therapy: Case Reports, Jeffrey Books 9780977027828.

Journal Articles

  • Short, A. and Heiderscheit, A. (2016), 'Why collaborate in music therapy? : exploring advances in relation to interprofessional publication practices', Nordic Journal of Music Therapy, vol 25, no Supplement 1 , pp 67 - 67.
  • Short, A. (2016), 'Teaching cultural sensitivity in music therapy : reporting on an international professional development program', Nordic Journal of Music Therapy, vol 25, no Supplement 1 , pp 149 - 149.
  • Heiderscheit, A. and Short, A. (2016), 'Evidence-based training in professional music therapy : a model for tertiary educators', Nordic Journal of Music Therapy, vol 25, no Supplement 1 , pp 33 - 33.
  • Short, A. (2016), 'Combining music and imagery in the context of medical music therapy', Music and Medicine, vol 8, no 2 , pp 6 - 8.
  • Phillips, R., Short, A., Kenning, A., Dugdale, P., Nugus, P., McGowan, R. and Greenfield, D. (2015), 'Achieving patient-centred care : the potential and challenge of the patient-as-professional role', Health Expectations, .
  • Short, A., Phillips, R., Nugus, P., Dugdale, P. and Greenfield, D. (2015), 'Developing an inter-organizational community-based health network : an Australian investigation', Health Promotion International, .
  • Phillips, R., Short, A., Dugdale, P., Nugus, P. and Greenfield, D. (2014), 'Supporting patients to self-manage chronic disease : clinicians' perspectives and current practices', Australian Journal of Primary Health, vol 20, no 3 , pp 257 - 265.
  • Ortiga, J., Kanapathipillai, S., Daly, B., Hilbers, J., Varndell, W. and Short, A. (2013), 'The sound of urgency : understanding noise in the emergency department', Music and Medicine, vol 5, no 1 , pp 44 - 51.
  • Short, A., Gibb, H., Fildes, J. and Holmes, C. (2013), 'Exploring the role of music therapy in cardiac rehabilitation after cardiothoracic surgery : a qualitative study using the Bonny Method of Guided Imagery and Music', Journal of Cardiovascular Nursing, vol 28, no 6 , pp 74 - 81.
  • Hogden, A., Short, A., Taylor, R., Dugdale, P., Nugus, P. and Greenfield, D. (2012), 'Health coaching and motivational interviewing : evaluating the chronic disease self-management toolbox as a tool for person-centered healthcare', International Journal of Person Centered Medicine, vol 2, no 3 , pp 520 - 530.
  • Dind, A., Short, A., Ekholm, J. and Holdgate, A. (2011), 'The inaccuracy of automatic devices taking postural measurements in the emergency department', International Journal of Nursing Practice, vol 17, no 5 , pp 525 - 533.
  • Sheikh, M., Nugus, P., Gao, Z., Holdgate, A., Short, A., Al Haboub, A. and MacIntyre, C. (2011), 'Equity and access : understanding emergency health service use by newly arrived refugees', Medical Journal of Australia, vol 195, no 2 , pp 74 - 76.
  • Short, A., Short, K., Holdgate, A., Ahern, N. and Morris, J. (2011), 'Noise levels in an Australian emergency department', Australasian Emergency Nursing Journal, vol 14, no 1 , pp 26 - 31.
  • Short, A., Gibb, H. and Holmes, C. (2011), 'Integrating words, images, and text in BMGIM : finding connections through semiotic intertextuality', Nordic Journal of Music Therapy, vol 20, no 1 , pp 3 - 21.
  • Short, A., Jackson, W. and Nugus, P. (2010), 'Expanding clinical research capacity through a community of practice (CoPER)', Nurse Education in Practice, vol 10, no 1 , pp 52 - 56.
  • Short, A., Ahern, N., Holdgate, A., Morris, J. and Sidhu, B. (2010), 'Using music to reduce noise stress for patients in the emergency department : a pilot study', Music and Medicine, vol 2, no 4 , pp 201 - 207.
  • Kington, M. and Short, A. (2010), 'What do consumers want to know in the emergency department?', International Journal of Nursing Practice, vol 16, no 4 , pp 406 - 411.
  • Nugus, P., Carroll, K., Hewett, D., Short, A., Forero, R. and Braithwaite, J. (2010), 'Integrated care in the emergency department : a complex adaptive systems perspective', Social Science and Medicine, vol 71, no 11 , pp 1997 - 2004.
  • Short, A., Holdgate, A., Ahern, N. and Morris, J. (2009), 'Enhancing research interest and collaboration in the interdisciplinary context of emergency care', Journal of Interprofessional Care, vol 23, no 2 , pp 156 - 168.
  • Ekholm, J. and Short, A. (2009), 'Merger and development : a collaborative approach to emergency nursing education within the context of an extended career pathway', Australasian Emergency Nursing Journal, vol 12, no 2 , pp 44 - 49.
  • Short, A. and Ahern, N. (2009), 'Evaluation of a systematic development process : relaxing music for the emergency department', Australian Journal of Music Therapy, vol 20 , pp 3 - 26.
  • Isbister, G., Brown, S., Miller, M., Tankel, A., Macdonald, E., Stokes, B., Ellis, R., Nagree, Y., Wilkes, G., James, R., Short, A. and Holdgate, A. (2008), 'A randomised controlled trial of intramuscular vs. intravenous antivenom for latrodectism - the RAVE study', QJM: An International Journal of Medicine, vol 101, no 7 , pp 557 - 565.

Conference Papers

  • Short, A. (2016), 'Exploring the auditory environment in the hospital setting : using music to reduce noise stress in the emergency department', Asian Music Therapy Congress, Taipei, Taiwan.

Other Publications

  • 2013, 'Evaluating Primary Health Care Policies: A Step Towards Identifying Human Resource Issues in Commune Health Stations in Vietnam', Research Report
  • 2008, 'Investigating Iron Deficiency Anaemia With African Women', Research Report

2015-2016  Exploring the feasibility of a purpose-designed music therapy relaxation program to reduce risk factors in cardiac recovery after major cardiac events: Pilot study and research capacity development ($19,896)

2015  ReViVe Program, Music Melodies Project, Prince of Wales Hospital and Community Health Services (Consultancy, $3,640)

2016  Determining music and music therapy needs in aged care. HCA Research Infrastructure Funding supporting development of collaborative research ($5,000). 

2016  Interprofessional engagement in the Creative Arts Therapies: Art Therapy and Music Therapy ($6,600)

2017 Music therapy for health and wellbeing with Chinese communities: A collaborative industry engagement day ($4,900)

2017 The essential role of the creative arts in trauma recovery: Developing and piloting an in-service teacher training module (9,500)

2018  It's not just listening to music: Use of voice in the context of GIM therapy ($10,000)

This information has been contributed by Doctor Short.

Previous Projects

Title: ReViVe Music Melodies project
  • Prince of Wales Hospital
Western Researchers:
Years: 2015-05-07 - 2015-10-26
ID: P00024258


Doctor Short is available to be a principal supervisor for doctoral projects

Current Supervision

Thesis Title: Differentiated Self and Integrated Self in Improvisational Music Therapy on an Individual-Communal Continuum: The Clients' Experience from the Clients' and Therapists' Point of View
Field of Research:
Thesis Title: Utilising Visual Aids to Assist in Structuring Group Music Therapy Programs for Vulnerable Families with Young Children
Field of Research:
Thesis Title: Music Based Cognitive Remediation Therapy for Indivduals with Schizophrenia
Field of Research:
Thesis Title: Pathways to Suicidality in Young Offenders
Field of Research:

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