Date of Award

Spring 5-5-2024

Document Type


Degree Name

MAE - Master of Arts in Expressive Therapies


Expressive Therapies


Dr. Madoka Urhausen, PhD, LMFT, ATR-BC


Recent research across disciplines has begun to explore the strengths associated with Autism, and the internal experiences of Autistic people. Advocates of the neurodiversity movement promote a nuanced view of Autism which celebrates unique strengths while supporting unique needs and understanding that these strengths and needs are often interconnected. The inclusion of Autistic perspectives in research has shown that compassionate adaptations to the social and sensory environment can often reduce difficulty with emotional regulation. This research has implications for the use of art therapy with Autistic populations. Art therapy has commonly been implemented from a deficit perspective with Autistic clients, seeking to improve social, communication, and emotion regulation skills. The practice of art therapy can become more effective and Autism-affirmative by incorporating Autistic strengths and acknowledging Autistic perspectives.

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