Date of Award

Spring May 2014

Access Restriction

Research Projects

Degree Name

Master of Arts


Marital and Family Therapy

School or College

College of Communication and Fine Arts

First Advisor

Paige Asawa


The purpose of this research was to explore the integration of restorative justice approaches within the structure of group art therapy. The research approach was based on a mixed methods design that incorporated both a survey and a case study of a group. The open group structure posed some challenges; however, four of the adolescents agreed to participate in the research study. Each of the eight group art therapy sessions was structured to include an art directive, psychoeducation, and group discussion. Based on the analysis of the data, restorative justice approaches can be successfully integrated into group art therapy. Findings suggest that the participants experience an ambiguity between the roles of victim and offender and had difficulty distinguishing the short-­‐term and long-­‐ term effects of behavior. The developed curriculum can be beneficial for incarcerated and anger management populations, as well as in school-­‐based programs. Future research may include explorations into the efficacy of the curriculum in a school setting with a closed group format. This research has opened the door for several future studies and has provided valuable information to the art therapy field.