Course Title: Therapeutic Use of Music and Visual Arts

Part A: Course Overview

Course ID: 030302

Course Title: Therapeutic Use of Music and Visual Arts

Credit Points: 12

Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


360H Education


Sem 1 2006

Course Coordinator: Ms Gerry Katz

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 4650

Course Coordinator Email:

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities

PERF2037 Creative Arts Therapy

Course Description

This course is designed to provide students with opportunities to understand the experience of working in, and with, these creative arts mediums, as well as to gain, knowledges of the therapeutic potential of Art (visual), and Music. The emphasis is on understanding one’s relationship to the materials and structures of the art forms as well as the experience of creative processes.

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

A student will be expected to:
• engage with the processes of art making and music making in order to gain a cognitive, emotional and physical understanding of these mediums;
• demonstrate an understanding of the effects of engaging with these art forms; to explicate one’s own relationship to forms of visual art and music;
• begin to critically analyse the theoretical assumptions underpinning these creative arts as therapy;
• begin to analyse how, when and where visual art and music can be used individually and intermodally to enhance health and wellbeing.

Overview of Learning Activities

Student learning will be facilitated through/within a series of experiential, interactive and didactic workshops which examine materials, structures and ways of seeing and hearing, as well as approaches to understanding these art form, what they evoke, and their potential uses in creative arts therapy. Students will be expected to come to each workshop with questions generated by their readings and reflections, as well as an enthusiastic interest to actively engage with, and participate in, the learning experiences.

Each workshop will provide time to discuss the process of the work, and to engage in reflective process, and small group discussion.

The study program consists of four weekend workshops focusing on the creative arts therapy processes of Art (visual), and Music, used individually and integratively, exploring theoretical and interactive elements (as outlined below)

Creative Arts Therapy Modality 1
Weekend 1 (31st July/1st August) – Visual Art
Weekend 2 (14/15th August) - Music
Weekend 3 (11/12th September) – Music and Visual Art
Weekend 4 (9/10th October ) – Visual Art and Music
Synthesis (24th October) Student Group Presentations

Overview of Learning Resources

Betensky, Mala. (1995) What Do You See? Phenomenology of Therapeutic Art Expression
London. Jessica Kingsley.
Dewey, John. (1936) Art as Experience
Hogan, Susan. (1997) Feminist Art Therapy. London. Routledge.
Kramer, Edith. (2000) Art as Therapy: Collected Papers. London. Jessica Kingsley Publishers.
Kaplan, Francis. (2002) Art, Science and Art Therapy: Repainting the Picture London, JKP
Lett, W. 1993. How the Arts Make a Difference in Therapy. Melbourne: Ausdance.
May, Rollo. (1975) The Courage To Create New York. W.W. Norton & Co.
Moon, Catherine. (2002) Studio Art Therapy London. Jessica Kingsley Publisher
Winnicott, D.W. (1971) Playing and Reality. London. Routledge.

Note: In keeping with the philosophy of learning within the Creative Arts Therapy program, students are responsible for completing all required readings as assigned to each class/workshop. 

Overview of Assessment

The assessment for the course will take the form of a submitted portfolio, and will contain materials or involve activities as follows:

a) Essay – Critical Reflection on experiential and theoretical material (2500 words) (50%)
b) Collaborative Assessment: Small group exploration and presentation of a scenario accompanied by a written outline of no more than 1500 words
(Facilitator/Peer assessment) (40%)
c) Self-Assessment (10%)

Due dates for the portfolio items to be negotiated with the course facilitators.

Assessment Criteria - Group Presentation

1. Application of Ideas and Concepts (60%)

a) The Presentation demonstrates understandings of: 
the techniques and ideas that allow (any of) us to be creative 
how to make a creative process accessible to others 
the role of the leader who sets the tone, provides direction 
the rationale for the choice of material 
how creativity and imagination can be engendered and engaged

b) In the follow-up discussion, the summary of the group’s conclusions about the therapeutic value of the project is clearly articulated.

2. Use of a variety of Formal and Informal Resources (15%)
a) The presentation demonstrates the use and integration of a selection of resources which
reflects the concepts identified in 1a.

3. Communication Skills – (25%)

3.1 - in the Presentation, ideas are communicated clearly, precisely and creatively

3.2 - in the individual written submission:
a) The material is presented in an appropriate academic format, paying particular
attention to consistent referencing, spelling and grammatical construction.

b) Integration and analysis of the concepts and ideas discussed in the presentation.
Ideas are presented in a concise, manner, taking the reader through a logical discussion from introduction to conclusion and closing.