The Masters enables you to practice as an art therapist in the NHS, Social Services, and educational establishments, and to become a practitioner registered with the British Association of Art Therapists and eligible to apply for registration with the Health & Care Professions Council (HCPC).
Your learning is underpinned by the principles and practices of psychodynamic psychotherapy practised within the context of mental health care, and informed by contemporary art practice.
Via theoretical studies, clinical work and experiential learning you will integrate cognitive understanding and practical experience with a developing awareness of self and other. The nature of the therapeutic relationship between client, their art work, and the art therapist is explored, and you have the opportunity to put your learning into practice through two 60-day placements which are supervised and supported in-depth.
You are encouraged to develop your own art practice and to situate your work in relationship to your development as a therapist, to contemporary art practice and to psychoanalytic theories. You must be in personal therapy throughout the programme.
Contact the department
If you have specific questions about the degree, contact Dr Sally Skaife.
Modes of study
The MA in Art Psychotherapy is a course that leads to successful applicants becoming eligible to apply for registration as an Arts Therapist with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC), the body which regulates and monitors standards of practice in the public sector. The programme can be studied in two modes - full-time for 2 years or part-time for 3 years. A clear indication of the mode chosen should be stated on application forms.
Year 1: all day Monday and Tuesday in college. Clinical placement days are usually Thursday and Friday. One day should be set aside for on-going studio practice where possible.
Years 2: all day Tuesday in college plus two days clinical placement to be arranged on other days – usually two consecutive days and these are negotiated with your placement. There are also three two day blocks of time for experiential groups (Mondays and Tuesdays). One day should be set aside for on-going studio practice where possible.
Year 1: all day Monday and Tuesday in college. One day should be set aside for on-going studio practice where possible.
Year 2: all day Tuesday in college plus two days clinical placement to be arranged on other days – usually two consecutive days. There are also three two day blocks of time for experiential groups. One day should be set aside for on-going studio practice where possible.
Year 3: Half a day in college on Tuesdays with some full-time Tuesdays (the yearly timetable will have details of which Tuesdays are half day or full day), plus, two days clinical placement to be arranged on other days – usually two consecutive days. One day should be set aside for on-going studio practice where possible.
It's a mandatory aspect of the course that all students must be in personal therapy for the duration of their training. Therapy may be on a group or individual basis and can be art therapy or verbal psychotherapy.
The MA will develop skills including:
the ability to work with a range of client populations an understanding of psychodynamic concepts development of your own art practice Careers Completion of the programme provides eligibility for the Health & Care Professions Council (HCPC) registration as an art psychotherapist.
Our graduates are invariably seen as offering a valuable and unique service to their clients and to the multidisciplinary teams in which they work – graduates have gone on to practice as art psychotherapists in the NHS, social services and in the education sector.