Date of Award

Spring 5-19-2018

Document Type


Degree Name

MA - Master of Arts


Expressive Therapies


Kawano, Tomoyo


This research focused on the role of art therapy on complex traumatic events of children and

explored how art therapy interventions can benefit children with trauma. Complex trauma is defined as a traumatic, chronic, and interpersonal event that begins in childhood, which later may foster a child to develop and maintain a system of strict maladaptive defenses and display symptoms such as excessive temper, regression, aggression, and overly demanding attention. Since a trivial, insignificant event on an adult’s eyes may not necessarily be the same insignificant event on children, there is a difficulty in defining trauma for children. This capstone project explored the role of art therapy with children who had complex traumatic events in the past. The participants of this project were four homeless children from ages 11 to 13, who reside in the housing program in an urban area with a single parent or parents. The results of using art therapy to treat children who had complex trauma events will be also discussed.

Creative Commons License

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




The author owns the copyright to this work.