Date of Award

Spring 5-18-2019

Document Type


Degree Name

MA - Master of Arts


Expressive Therapies


Elizabeth Kellogg


Mental health assessments originated as a tool to separate troubled individuals from mainstream society (Feder and Feder, 1998, p. 7). As the field of mental health has developed over time, assessments have come to serve a different purpose. Assessments provide the therapist insight into their clients current experience and data to guide a treatment plan. Data collected from an assessment may be a DSM-V diagnosis, a numeric score, or a qualitative clinical description. As arts-based therapeutic interventions become more widely acknowledged in the field of mental health, modality specific assessments have been developed in order to gather clinical data. Data collected from these assessments may be a painted image, a series of movements, the narrative to a fictional story or the lyrics to a song. As these tools emerge, many question their validity, as they do not often have formal elements of assessment. In addition, a sufficient assessment tool for expressive arts therapists, a newer arts-based therapeutic modality, has yet to be developed. In this thesis, I will explore the necessity of assessment in mental health, the demand and evolution of formal and informal arts-based assessment, and finally, I will examine how The Expressive Assessment and the Expressive Therapies Continuum (ETC) can be used as assessments for expressive arts therapists.

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Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.




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