Date of Award

Spring 5-18-2024

Document Type


Degree Name

MA - Master of Arts


Expressive Therapies


Dr. E. Kellogg


Neurodevelopmental disorders are complex disorders that impact many factors of functioning. Many individuals with neurodevelopmental disorders have comorbid anxiety that often goes untreated because clinicians have difficulty recognizing and differentiating symptoms of the disorder from symptoms of anxiety. For this reason, noticing and treating symptoms of anxiety in individuals with neurodevelopmental disorders is important in improving quality of life. This thesis shows the development of a method to treat comorbid anxiety in youth with neurodevelopmental disabilities. Individuals with neurodevelopmental disorders tend to have difficulty expressing emotions verbally. Dance/movement therapy is a psychotherapy specializing in nonverbal communication. Research has shown that the use of metaphor, visual arts, dance/movement therapy approaches like mirroring, and drumming can improve mental health. These therapeutic techniques were utilized in this method, which resulted in varied engagement levels. Two formats of this intervention are discussed, including one small-group session and one individual session.

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Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
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