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Faculty Advisors

Olszewski, Carol A.


Based on the investigations of cognitive function and the processing of music, a system of techniques for music therapy called Neurologic Music Therapy (NMT) was developed by Dr. Michael Thaut. Thaut (2014) defines NMT as “the therapeutic application of music to cognitive, sensory, and motor dysfunctions due to neurologic disease of the human nervous system” (p. 1). This project proposes further study of one of the NMT techniques: Rhythmic Auditory Stimulation (RAS), which addresses sensorimotor rehabilitation. RAS is supported by extensive research in laboratory settings, resulting in improved gait and coordination with patients who suffered a cerebrovascular accident or were diagnosed with Parkinson’s or Huntington’s (Thaut, Mertel, & Leins, 2008). There is a specific protocol for RAS; however, simply, it uses a specific auditory beat as an external cue for the timing of walking. This primes the premotor cortex for movement and entrains the brain to activate the lower extremities at the specified beat. Extant literature indicates priming and entrainment result in improved gait parameters, such as cadence, velocity, and stride length (Clair & O’Konski, 2006). This study aims to test whether this temporal priming still occurs if the rhythmic cue is given visually as well as through tactile sensation.

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College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences





RAS Expanded: Visual and Tactile Cueing for Individuals with Gait Disorders

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