CART 7005 Art Therapy: Histories, Theories, Groups

Credit Points 20

Legacy Code 101303

Coordinator Patricia Parish Opens in new window

Description This unit explores theories and practical experiences relevant to art therapy. Consideration is given to the major theoretical frameworks of art therapy, its historical development and group processes. There is a major experiential component which provides practical experience in exploring the process of art therapy by working in a group situation led by an experienced art therapist/s. The process will be explored and examined in relation to the self, to the self as artist and to therapeutic practice.

School Social Sciences

Student Contribution Band HECS Band 2 20cp

Check your HECS Band contribution amount via the Fees page.

Level Postgraduate Coursework Level 7 subject

Incompatible Subjects LGYA 7428 - Art Therapy Theory and Practice 1 LGYA 9676 - Art Therapy Theory and Practice 2

Restrictions Students must be enrolled in 4595 Master of Art Therapy or 4617 Master of Social Science. Refer to the subject Outline for attendance requirements for experiential group sessions.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this subject, students should be able to:
  1. Examine the histories and practices of art therapy and its development as a profession, with particular critical attention to the postcolonial Australian context.
  2. Describe and compare the major theoretical frameworks of art therapy.
  3. Explore and analyse the connections between theory and practice in art therapy
  4. Practice art making skills and techniques and reflectively analyse the centrality of, and demonstrate an understanding of their significance within art therapy.
  5. Show awareness of the self in one�fs own art making and reflectively analyse the centrality of this to the practice of art psychotherapy.
  6. Recognise and investigate the processes in art therapy in groups.
  7. Practice and reflect on interpersonal sensitivity and self-awareness in the experiential training group.

Subject Content

1. Historical overview of the development of art Therapy in Australia, Europe & North America
2. The history of art therapy and its relationship to psychiatry, education and the visual arts
3. Analysis of art therapy in a postcolonial context
4. Consideration of art therapy as clinical practice
5. The relationship between theory and practice
6. Exploration of the relationship between art practice & art therapy
7. Exploration of art therapy group process
8. Art making practice within a group experiential learning context


The following table summarises the standard assessment tasks for this subject. Please note this is a guide only. Assessment tasks are regularly updated, where there is a difference your Learning Guide takes precedence.

Item Length Percent Threshold Individual/Group Task
Essay Proposal: The Essay Proposal maps out a planned response to the essay question (below) and includes an indicative bibliography of relevant texts. 500 words 10 N Individual
Essay: This assessment develops an understanding and critical response to a major theme within the histories, theories and practices of art therapy. 2,500 words 40 N Individual
Experiential Group Log: This item is an observation and reflective analysis of the group art therapy training experience. 3,000 words 50 Y Individual

Teaching Periods

2022 Semester 1

Parramatta - Victoria Rd


Subject Contact Patricia Parish Opens in new window

View timetable Opens in new window