Date of Award

Spring 5-2012

Degree Name

Master of Arts

Department

Marital and Family Therapy

School or College

College of Communication and Fine Arts

First Advisor

Paige Asawa

Abstract

This study explores the use of Helen Landgarten’s family art assessment in helping to inform therapists’ work with families. The study endeavors to evaluate a pilot project in which director of the Helen B. Landgarten Art Therapy Clinic, Dr. Paige Asawa, MFT, ATR-BC, implemented the Landgarten family art assessment at a local clinic with five families and involved family track clinicians through observation and discussion to inform their clinical treatment of families. Through program evaluation using a survey and an art-based research procedure, the study investigates family track clinicians’ experiences, recommendations, and opinions of the family art assessment. Ten family track clinicians participated in program evaluation in this study. A quantitative and qualitative analysis of participants’ survey answers and art responses served to solidify whether these clinicians found the family art assessment project beneficial to their clinical work with families. A synthesis of the literature, survey analysis, and art analysis reveals the value of having art therapists conduct family art assessments as an informative consultation for clinicians assessing and treating families. Study results may contribute to more formal inclusion of the family art assessment in assessment procedures at this local clinic. These results hold valuable implications for redefining the role of the art therapist as assessment expert, using art therapy to promote collaboration among mental health professionals, and ultimately improving the quality of clinical family care.

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