Date of Award

Spring 5-19-2018

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

MAE - Master of Arts in Expressive Therapies

Department

Expressive Therapies

First Advisor

Jason D. Butler, PHD, RDT-BCT

Abstract

The present research project focuses on how art therapy groups can be used in short-term intensive treatment to manage anxiety symptoms. Mental health treatment has shifted into short-term groups, usually without more than ten sessions that can be intimidating for clients struggling with anxiety symptoms. Art therapy can be a way to manage and reduce symptoms of anxiety in a group setting and quickly develop connections within the group members. Art therapy offers a contained structure and format that can create safety quickly. A clay based art therapy based group was implemented in an acute partial hospital program with adults with heterogeneous diagnoses, however all with anxiety symptoms. This group allowed clients to move past anxieties and remain present and focused. This paper will provide a brief overview of the current research and begin introduce an art therapy group format that can be used with a group in short-term mental health treatment setting.

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