Art Therapy Careers
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What Art Therapists do:
Art Therapists use the creative arts to promote the positive mental health of people of all ages, by focusing on the psychotherapeutic transference process of the client who makes art.
The art therapist interprets the client's non verbal expression, as communicated in the art, and draws out interpretations from the client. Art Therapists may work with children, youth, adults and the elderly providing an effective treatment for developmental, medical, educational, and social or psychological impairments.
The main duties of an Art Therapist include:
- Facilitating Therapeutic Art Groups
- Enabling clients to explore their art work and the process of its production
- Constructively challenging the behavior and attitude of clients
- Providing Individual Crisis Counseling
- Assessing patients as needed
- Participating in Treatment planning
- Completing Rehab assessments
- Planning events and activities for patients
Education & Qualifications:
To become an Art Therapist you must complete an accredited Masters Degree program in Art Therapy or a program with an emphasis on Art Therapy e.g. Recreational Therapy. Programs are accredited by the American Art Therapy Association (AATA) and include core subjects such as: Techniques of practice in art therapy, History and theory of art therapy, human and creative development, multicultural issues, research methods, Ethical and legal issues of art therapy practice, Standards of practice in art therapy and Cultural and social diversity.
On graduating from an accredited Art Therapy Program you can then apply to become Art Therapist Registered (ATR) by submitting documentation for a number of supervised hours and professional references to the Art Therapy Credentials Board (ATCB). After being granted the ATR, you then can sit for the Board Certification examination (ATR-BC). The ATR-BC examination is offered annually at various locations across the United States.
Salary & Job Prospects:
Qualified Art Therapists can expect to earn salaries between $35,000 - $50,000 per year. Salaries are dependent on qualifications, location, position held and experience. The job prospects are predicted to be excellent. If you are considering a career in Art Therapy it is essential to have excellent people and creative skills, with a good insight into human behavior.
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