Alternative Title

Hip hop therapy with youth of color

Publication Date


Document Type

Masters Thesis

Study Type



School for Social Work


Hip hop-Therapeutic use, Rap (Music)-Therapeutic use, African American teenagers-Services for, Hispanic American teenagers-Services for, Resilience (Personality trait) in adolescence, Beats Rhymes and Life Inc., Resilience, Hip-hop, Youth, Rap


This study seeks to understand if participation in Therapeutic Activity Groups (TAGS) at Beats Rhymes & Life helps young people to develop greater resilience. In this paper, resilience is defined in two parts: the ability for participants to engage their inner strengths and characteristics to overcome adversity and the capacity to identify and utilize community and interpersonal resources. This study consists of a quantitative analysis to create a revision of the program’s existing pre/post treatment survey and examine resilience as reported by ten youth participants.

The findings revealed that participation in TAGs had a statistically significant impact on participant’s ability to recognize and utilize their community and interpersonal resources. This suggests that the BRL program is successful at helping youth feel part of a community, which helps them feel less isolated and therefore more able to seek support when needed. The findings also revealed that participation in TAGs might impact participant capacity to use inner strengths to overcome adversity. However, further investigation is needed, possibly due to small sample size. Overall, this study highlights the importance of assessing and revising measurement tools used in community mental health and highlights the importance of youth development programs supporting youth in engaging with their communities in order to develop resilience.




iv, 58 pages. M.S.W., Smith College School for Social Work, Northampton, Ma., 2016. Includes bibliographical references (pages 42-46)

Included in

Social Work Commons