Sheri Robb, PhD, MT-BC
Research in Palliative and End-of-Life Communication and Training (RESPECT) Center
Science of Nursing Care
Director, Indiana CTSI KL2 Young Investigators Program
Nursing E433, Indianapolis
Behavioral Oncology, Indiana University
PhD, The University of Kansas
MEd, Auburn University
BM, The Florida State University
Dr. Robb's program of research focuses on the development and testing of music therapy and music-based interventions to manage distress and improve positive health outcomes in children/adolescents with cancer and their caregivers. Dr. Robb is a board-certified music therapist with degrees in music therapy and early childhood special education. In 2009, she completed a postdoctoral fellowship in behavioral oncology and cancer control at Indiana University and in 2011 a career development award through Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute (CTSI).
Dr. Robb collaborates on research that has received funding from the National Institutes of Health, National Institute of Nursing Research, National Cancer Institute, Children's Oncology Group, Indiana CTSI, and the IU RESPECT center. She is internationally recognized for her work in pediatric music therapy and has served as expert speaker for workshops hosted by the National Cancer Institute and National Center for Complimentary and Integrative Health, and National Endowment for the Arts. In 2017, the NIH and the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts launched the Sound Health: Music and the Mind initiative, which is working to accelerate our understanding about the use of music for health benefit through interdisciplinary collaboration. As part of this initiative, Dr. Robb served as an invited plenary speaker for the NIH panel sessions, and curated the Kennedy Center session on music therapy. Dr. Robb also serves on the Leadership Team for the Sound Health Network, which is funded by the NEA (Dr. Julene Johnson, PI; University of California San Fransico).
In response to calls for more transparent and accurate reporting of behavioral interventions in published research, Dr. Robb led development and publication of Reporting Guidelines for Music-based Interventions intended to support Consolidated Standards for Reporting Trials (CONSORT) and Transparent Reporting of Evaluations with Non-randomized Designs (TREND) statements. The reporting guidelines are listed in the EQUATOR Network and have been adopted by several journals to improve music intervention reporting.
Dr. Robb served as Editor-in-Chief for the Journal of Music Therapy (2010-2018), and currently serves as an advisory member of the Nordic Journal of Music Therapy editorial board. Sheri is a Full Member of the Indiana University Melvin and Bren Simon Cancer Center, and Director for the Indiana CTSI KL2 Young Investigators Program.
For more information on music therapy, please visit the American Music Therapy Association website. For more information on the IU Research in Palliative and End-of-Life Communication and Training, visit the RESPECT Center please visit
View events from the NIH-Kennedy Center Sound Health: Music and the Mind initiative for Day 1 NIH Panel Sessions (Sheri’s plenary talk begins at minute mark 1:04), and for the Kennedy Center Sound Health session, view “Breakthroughs with Music Therapy: Recovery, Resilience, & Quality of Life”
R01 NR019190. (2019-2024). Biologic Mechanisms and Dosing of Active Music Engagement in Children with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia and Parents. PI.
R01 NR015789. (2016-2020). Mechanisms of Active Music Engagement to Improve Health Outcomes of Children with Cancer and Parents. PI.
Indiana University School of Nursing, Center for Enhancing Quality of Life in Chronic Illness. (2015-2019). Active Music Engagement for Young Children Undergoing Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplant for Cancer and Parents. PI.
Indiana University School of Nursing, Center for Enhancing Quality of Life in Chronic Illness. (2015-2017).Testing the Family Management Efficacy (FAME) Intervention for African American Families of Adolescents with Disruptive Behavior Disorders. Co-I.
Children's Oncology Group. ANUR1131. (2011-2016). Palliative Cancer Care: Music video for AYA-parent communication and resilience. Co-Chair.
R01 CA162181. (2011-2016). Palliative Cancer Care: Music video for AYA-parent communication and resilience. MPI.
Research in Palliative and End-of-Life Communication and Training (RESPECT) Center. (2012-2014). Stories and music for parents and young children with cancer: A clinical feasibility study. PI.
Indiana CTSI. KL2RR025760. (2010-2012). Parent implemented active music engagement (AME) for young children with cancer: A clinical feasibility study.
Children's Oncology Group. ANUR1131. (2005-2011). Music video and adolescent resilience during transplant. Co-Chair.
R01 NR008583. (2005-2011). Music video and adolescent resilience during transplant. Co-investigator. Co-I.
For a full list please visit: