Art therapy for posttraumatic-stress disorder

Schnitzer, G. (2018) Art therapy for posttraumatic-stress disorder. D.Clin.Psychol. thesis, Canterbury Christ Church University.

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Background: Posttraumatic-stress disorder (PTSD) is common in military veterans. Research has shown reduced effectiveness of commonly offered treatments in those with military backgrounds. Some research has suggested the usefulness of art therapy for veterans with PTSD. The project aimed to establish firstly participants’ perceptions of any impact of group art therapy for veterans and secondly some of the perceived mechanisms of change.

Methodology: Semi-structured interviews were conducted with nine veterans who had received group art therapy, two art therapists, and a veteran’s wife. Interviews were analysed using grounded theory.

Results: Theorised categories pertaining to active ingredients of art therapy and its impact included (a) the art therapy group, (b) the art therapist, (c) trust, (d) doing the work, (e) a communication tool, (f) points of recognition, (g) making things concrete, and (h) not a cure.

Discussion: The developed grounded theory is linked with existing literature. Limitations of the study design and analysis are discussed. Clinical recommendation include a call for greater co-operation between mainstream and art therapists. Due to the fairly homogenous sample it is suggested to replicate the project at different sites. Elements of the model may be investigated further to establish its validity.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Additional Information: Please note that I am still in contact with two potential additional participants. They have both responded late to the recruitment letter. I may interview them to get additional data for my publication.
Uncontrolled Keywords: Art therapy; military veterans; PTSD; mechanisms of change; grounded theory
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology > BF0636 Applied psychology
Divisions: Faculty of Social and Applied Sciences > School of Psychology, Politics and Sociology > Salomons Centre for Applied Psychology
Depositing User: Miss Rosemary Cox
Date Deposited: 04 Oct 2018 14:23
Last Modified: 04 Oct 2018 14:30

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Last edited: 29/06/2016 12:23:00