Date of Award

Spring 5-22-2021

Document Type


Degree Name

MA - Master of Arts


Expressive Therapies


E. Kellogg


This thesis describes an intervention for adolescents in a virtual, group-based partial hospitalization program (PHP). Research in various effective therapeutic methods including supportive music and imagery (SMI), trauma-informed art therapy with adolescents, strength-based psychology, and digital artmaking informed my intervention, “Positive Self Imagery Collage” (PSIC). Group members created virtual collages representative of a SMI experience designed to imagine oneself “trying on” positive traits. PSIC was implemented in a virtual PHP via Zoom for adolescents. The intervention was documented through personal journaling and virtual artmaking. PSIC took place multiple times between January and March 2021, each time with a new set of group members. A range of diagnoses, suicidal and self-harming histories, and anxiety and depression symptoms were exhibited among the group of adolescents, with the acute level of care and crisis being the commonality amongst them. PSIC is a group intervention that can be used in a virtual or in-person acute care setting, with limited adjustments to accommodate the delivery of treatment. PSIC is adaptable enough to allow clients to get what they need individually from treatment, while providing enough structure to accommodate for the range of diagnoses and presentations. Results from the intervention showed the intervention to be successful in multiple, virtual group sizes across various client diagnoses, presentations, and group dynamics.

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