33 Best Master’s Degrees in Art Therapy, Ranked by Affordability

best-counseling-degrees-top-art-therapy-degrees

By BCD Staff

August 2018

Welcome. Here you will find a list of the best master’s degrees in art therapy in the United States. This list includes programs at colleges and universities that were pioneers in offering a graduate degree in art therapy as well as more newly established programs some of which offer the flexibility of online coursework. If you are interested in pursuing a career as a professional art therapist this list of the best master’s degrees in art therapy will help you get there!

Art therapists integrate the traditional techniques and theories of psychotherapy with the theories and tools of art therapy. Clinicians can use art therapy for assessment, treatment, and prevention of a wide range of issues and concerns. In art therapy, the artistic and creative process is used to promote healing and self-understanding.

Art therapy allows clients to express themselves non verbally, making it an effective model of treatment for diverse populations including children, adults, individuals, families, couples, and groups. Art therapy is considered an effective mode of treatment for a variety of presenting concerns such as anxiety, depression, low self-esteem, substance abuse, post-traumatic stress disorder, behavioral issues, medical issues, relationship challenges, grief, and loss. Art therapists can work in settings such as private practice; mental health clinics; schools; hospitals; residential treatment centers; nursing homes; prisons; social service centers; and homeless shelters.

In order to become a professional and certified art therapist students need to graduate from a master’s program approved by the American Art Therapy Association (AATA). Approval by the AATA means that the college or university offering the program is regionally accredited by the U.S. Department of Education and that the program offering the degree has met strict educational standards developed by the AATA Educational Program Approval Board (EPAB). This allows students to know they are investing in a rigorous, well-rounded, and complete education in the field of art therapy.

In order to become a registered art therapist, students will need to graduate from an accredited program and then go on to complete post-graduate clinical hours under the direct supervision of a credentialed art-therapist. Graduates can obtain credentialing as a Board Certified Art Therapist (ATR-BC), the highest credential in art therapy, after successfully completing the national examination.

Many of the schools listed here will also prepare graduates for licensure as a professional counselor. Licensing requirements vary by state and we encourage you to consult the licensing board of the state you plan to practice in for specific requirements. We are confident that you will find the right program to help you meet your goal of a career as a professional art therapist here.

Methodology: To develop this ranking, we used the Institute of Education Sciences’ College Navigator to gather a list of schools that offered an art therapy program as a masters degree. Data was gathered for the average graduate tuition. Schools were then ranked on affordability.

#33 School of the Art Institute of Chicago

Chicago, IL

Master of Arts in Art Therapy and Counseling

school-of-the-art-institute-of-chicago-chicago-il-master-of-arts-in-art-therapy-and-counselingThe School of the Art Institute of Chicago offers a Master of Arts in Art Therapy and Counseling. This is a 60 credit program that can be completed in three years. Students will complete coursework and fieldwork as they pursue their graduate degree. Supervised fieldwork experiences are offered in a variety of settings from mental health clinics, to drug treatment programs, to correctional facilities allowing students to work with diverse populations experiencing a variety of challenges. Students will complete a thesis or graduate project and participate in the annual Art of Connection exhibition which features artwork from graduate students in the Art Therapy program as well as artwork from the clients they have worked in with their fieldwork placements.

Courses include: Materials and Media in Art Therapy; Psychopathology; History and Theory of Art Therapy; Counseling Techniques; Assessment and Evaluation in Art Therapy; Group Art Therapy; Cultural Dimensions in Art Therapy; Ethical and Legal Issues; Human Growth and Development; Family Art Therapy; Substance Use; Professional Development and Career Counseling; and Art Therapy Fieldwork.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $48,750.00
  • Credits Required: 60
  • Application Deadline: January 15th

#32 Adler University

Chicago, IL

Master of Arts in Counseling Art Therapy

adler-university-chicago-il-master-of-arts-in-counseling-art-therapyA Master of Arts in Counseling: Art Therapy is available at Alder University. The Art Therapy Program at Alder University is approved by the American Art Therapy Association and can be completed in two years of full-time study. Students will enjoy small class sizes and well-designed studio spaces as they engage in the artistic and therapeutic process. Students will benefit from supervision during their clinical training by art therapists and licensed counselors and therapists. Graduates will be prepared to pursue a career as a licensed professional counselor and certified art therapist with the skills and training to use the theory and process of art therapy to support clients in improving their mental health.

Courses include: Professional Development, Issues and Ethics in Art Therapy, Counseling and Psychopathology; Community Psychology; Introduction to Adlerian Psychology and Psychopathology; Introduction to Addictive Disorders; Lifestyle and Career Development; Biopsychosocial Bases of Health and Dysfunction for Counselors; Research Methods in Art Therapy, Counseling and Psychotherapy; Life Span Development in Art Therapy, Counseling and Psychotherapy; Neuroscience in Art Therapy, Counseling and Psychotherapy: Special Populations; and Studio Art in Therapy, Counseling and Psychotherapy.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $43,400.00
  • Credits Required: 63
  • Application Deadline: April 1st

#31 School of Visual Arts

New York, NY

Master of Professional Studies in Art Therapy

school-of-visual-arts-new-york-ny-master-of-professional-studies-in-art-therapyThe School of Visual Arts in New York offers a Master of Professional Studies in Art Therapy. This 60 credit program trains students to work professionally as licensed art therapists. The program is designed to provide students with an academic framework along with experiential exercises to help students have a deep understanding of art therapy. Through coursework, internship experiences, lectures, conferences, workshops, exhibitions, and studio time graduates of the program will be prepared to pursue a career and be leaders in the field of art therapy. Additionally, students who wish to travel internationally will have an opportunity to do so. The program strives to attract a diverse population of students for the program and is able to offer scholarships to qualified applicants.

Courses include: Theoretical Foundations of Art Therapy; Child Art Development; Adolescent art Development; Methods and Materials in Art Therapy; Group Therapy and Practice; Adult Art Development; Psychiatric Populations and the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual; Interviewing and Counseling Skills; Resourcefulness and Creativity; Transforming Space; Clinical Topics in Addictionology; Physiology of Addictions; Physiology of Trauma; Clinical Topics in Trauma; Multicultural Issues in Art Therapy; Family Art Therapy; Community Access Through the Arts; and Art Therapy Exhibition and Social Justice.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $42,570.00
  • Credits Required: 60
  • Application Deadline: January 15th

#30 New York University

New York, NY

Master of Arts in Art Therapy

new-york-university-new-york-ny-master-of-arts-in-art-therapyThe Department of Art and Art Professions at New York University offers a Master of Arts in Art Therapy. Through learning about and developing competence in scholarly research, evidence-based practices, cross-cultural competence, issues of social justice, and an understanding of technology and art graduates will be well prepared for careers as professional art therapists. New York University has a rich history of training art therapists since the 1950’s with the art therapy graduate program being established in the 1970’s.

Courses include: Art for Art Therapists; Theory and Practice of Art Therapy; Cultural Diversity in Art Therapy; Ethical Issues in Art Therapy; Art Therapy with Children; Pictorial Analysis for Assessment and Diagnosis; Art Therapy with Adolescents; Internship in Art Therapy; Research in Art Therapy; Art Therapy with Groups; Clinical Interventions for Specialized Populations; and Family Art Therapy.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $41,352.00
  • Credits Required: 60
  • Application Deadline: February 1st

#29 Drexel University

Philadelphia, PA

Master of Arts in Art Therapy and Counseling

drexel-university-philadelphia-pa-master-of-arts-in-art-therapy-and-counselingA Master of Arts in Art Therapy and Counseling is offered at Drexel University through the College of Nursing and Health Professions. This 90 credit program can be completed in two years of full-time study. Students will complete core courses in general mental health counseling with specialized courses specific to the practice of art therapy. The program works to explore topics of these areas in depth with unique courses covering topics such as neuroscience and trauma approaches. Students will use what they learn in the classroom and apply it to practicum and internship experiences. Students will wrap up their time in the program with a final project that highlights their understanding of how practice, theory, and research intersect in the field of art therapy.

Courses include: Introduction to Creative Arts Therapy; Human Psychological Development; Clinical Diagnosis of Psychopathology; Professional Orientation and Ethics; Art Therapy Assessment and Treatment for Children; Art Therapy Theory and Symbolism; Introduction to Behavioral Research; Studio Art for Art Therapists; Career Counseling; Forensic Art Therapy; Social and Cultural Foundations in Counseling and Psychotherapy; Art Therapy Approaches to Trauma Treatment; Medical Art Therapy; and Professional Identity in Art Therapy and Counseling.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $33,156.00
  • Credits Required: 90
  • Application Deadline: Priority deadline December 1st, regular deadline January 15th

#28 Springfield College

Springfield, MA

Master of Science in Art Therapy/Counseling

springfield-college-springfield-ma-master-of-science-in-art-therapy-counselingSpringfield College offers a Master of Science in Art Therapy/Counseling. The program is designed to support students in becoming professional art therapists with the skills to integrate art and psychology to promote wellbeing for the client. Students will engage in coursework, research, and studio art throughout their time in the program. Students will apply the techniques and skills they learn in practicum and internship experiences where they will have the opportunity to work with individuals and groups from diverse backgrounds experiencing various challenges.

Courses include: Counseling Theory and Practice of Art Therapy; Ethical Issues in Art Therapy/Counseling; Painting for the Art Therapist; Psychopathology; Foundations and Methods of Research; Introduction to Art Therapy Research; Art Therapy with Children and Adolescents; Printmaking for the Art Therapist; Group Counseling Techniques and Group Art Therapy; Multicultural Issues in Art Therapy/Counseling; Human Life Span Development; Family Therapy and Family Art Therapy; and Psychopharmacology.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $30,510.00
  • Credits Required: 63 – 67
  • Application Deadline: Rolling Admissions until July 25th

#27 Pratt Institute-Main

Brooklyn, NY

Master of Science of Professional Studies in Art Therapy and Creativity Development

pratt-institute-main-brooklyn-ny-master-of-science-of-professional-studies-in-art-therapy-and-creativity-developmentA Master of Science of Professional Studies in Art Therapy and Creativity Development is offered at Pratt’s Graduate Department of Creative Arts Therapy. Students will learn how to utilize art therapy with diverse populations in a variety of clinical settings through theoretical and experiential learning. The program is grounded in psychodynamic theory with a focus on promoting self-awareness for each student to enhance their professional practice and ability to support others. A Low Residency Program: Spring Summer Intensive format of study is offered for students who are not able to relocate to New York City and/or who have commitments personally or professionally that make it hard to engage in a traditional program.

Courses include: Creative Arts Therapy; Group Creative Arts Therapy; Materials in Creative Art Therapy; Fieldwork Experience and Supervision; Development of Personality; Art Diagnosis; Research and Thesis; Family Art Therapy; Clinical Diagnosis and Treatment Issues; Development of Personality; The Psychology of Intergroup Relations and Institutional Process.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $30,384.00
  • Credits Required: 53
  • Application Deadline: November 1st for Spring

#26 George Washington University

Washington, DC

Master of Arts in Art Therapy

george-washington-university-washington-dc-master-of-arts-in-art-therapyThe Columbian College of Arts and Sciences at George Washington University offers a graduate program in Art Therapy. Students can choose between three options for their degree: a Master’s in Art Therapy (with a thesis option); a Master’s in Art Therapy Practice; and a combined Bachelor of Arts/Masters of Arts in Art Therapy. George Washington’s Art Therapy program was founded in 1971 and was one of the first art therapy programs in the country. Students who are interested in an emphasis in Social and Cultural Diversity can complete international and service-learning coursework over the summer in India, France, South Africa and American Indian country.

Courses include: History and Theory of Art Therapy; Human Development and Art Therapy; Counseling/Art Therapy Process; Studio/Technique of Art Therapy; Child Art Therapy; Art Therapy with Adolescents; Marital and Family Art Therapy/Counseling; Group Process; Social and Cultural Diversity; Assessment Procedures; Research Methods; Ethics and Professionalism; Advanced Issues in Psychotherapy and Art Therapy; Art Psychotherapy and Trauma: Theory and Approaches to Treatment; Career Counseling and Art Therapy; Substance Abuse and Addictions; and Practicum in Art Therapy.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $29,790.00
  • Credits Required: 61
  • Application Deadline: Rolling Admissions

#25 LIU Post

Brookville, NY

Master of Arts in Clinical Art Therapy

liu-post-brookville-ny-master-of-arts-in-clinical-art-therapyLIU Post offers a Master of Arts in Clinical Art Therapy. Students in this 51 credit program can choose to enroll in part-time or full-time study. Classes are kept small (8-22 students) in order to promote close and supportive relationships between students and to allow for individualized instruction from faculty. Students are offered over 100 clinical training internship sites to choose from. The department works to connect students with the New York area artist community and to utilize the museums and galleries on Long Island and in New York City to enhance students learning and graduate school experience.

Courses include: Theories in Art Therapy and Counseling; Studio: Drawing, Painting and Sculpture for the Art Therapist; History and Philosophy of Art Therapy; Career Development; Clinical Group Techniques in Art Therapy and Counseling; Theories of Art Therapy and Counseling in Child/Adolescent Populations; Psychopathology; Research Methods; Multicultural Issues in Counseling and Clinical Art Therapy; Therapeutic Systems: Family Art Therapy and Counseling; Art Therapy Thesis; and Psychopharmacology.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $28,824.00
  • Credits Required: 51

#24 Florida State University

Tallahassee, FL

Master of Science in Art Therapy

florida-state-university-tallahassee-fl-master-of-science-in-art-therapyA Master of Science in Art Therapy is offered at Florida State University. Through the study of diverse theories, engagement in research, and clinical practice students will learn to use the visual arts to enhance their therapeutic practice and to promote healing in diverse populations of individuals and communities. Students have the opportunity to work closely with their cohort and with faculty with a range of specializations and areas of expertise. A doctoral program in Art Therapy is also offered at Florida State University for students who are interested in earning their Ph.D. in Art Therapy.

Courses include: Introduction to Counseling Concepts in Art Therapy; Theories of Art Therapy; Development in Art Therapy; Program Development; Art Therapy and Group Counseling; Assessment for the Practice of Art Therapy; Art Therapy Issues: Trauma, Loss, Sexual Abuse; Therapeutic Use of Art Materials; Career Development; Advanced Art Therapy; Multicultural Issues and Art Therapy; Ethics and Professional Issues; Studio Art and Self-Care Concepts; Licensure Course; Family Art Therapy; and Master’s Thesis or Supervised Research.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $24,116.00
  • Credits Required: 61 – 64
  • Application Deadline: January 15th

#23 Hofstra University

Hempstead, NY

Master of Arts in Creative Arts Therapy

hofstra-university-hempstead-ny-master-of-arts-in-creative-arts-therapyHofstra University offers a Master of Arts in Creative Arts Therapy. The American Art Therapy Association has approved this well-established program since 1984. Students in the program will benefit from small class sizes and a diverse student population. A unique feature of the this Creative Arts Therapy Counseling program is the opportunity that students have to study abroad in Ireland. The curriculum and clinical experiences are designed to support students in graduating ready to pursue professional careers as art therapists with awareness and understanding of critical issues such as ethics, diversity, and development across the lifespan.

Courses include: Clinical Instruction in Media Techniques; Foundations of Art Therapy Counseling; Child and Adolescent Development in Art Therapy Counseling; Group Art Therapy Counseling; Clinical Methods in Art Therapy Counseling; Multicultural Perspectives in Creative Arts Therapy Counseling; Multicultural Perspectives in Creative Arts Therapy Counseling; Art Therapy Counseling Throughout Adult Development and Aging; Ethical Considerations and Clinical Practice in Creative Arts Therapy Counseling; and Creativity in Creative Arts Therapy Counseling.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $23,256.00
  • Credits Required: 60

#22 Indiana University – Purdue University – Indianapolis

Indianapolis, IN

Master of Arts in Art Therapy

indiana-university-purdue-university-indianapolis-indianapolis-in-master-of-arts-in-art-therapyA Master of Arts in Art Therapy is offered through the Herron School of Art and Design at Indiana University Purdue (IUPUI). This program focuses on training through a psychodynamic framework with attention to the impact of neurobiology on communication. Students will have the opportunity to engage in clinical experiences in mental health clinics, medical settings, educational programs, and even forensic facilities while learning to provide evidence-based treatment for individuals experiencing a broad spectrum of challenges. The program is designed to prepare graduates for certification as a Registered Art Therapist and professional licensure as a Mental Health Counselor.

Recent research coming out of the program includes: Group Art Therapy with Adult Female Victims of Sexual Violence; Working Together: Neuroscience-Based Support for Art Therapists and Clients to Co-Create; and The Role of Art Therapy in Hospice: An Understanding of the Grief Process for Caregivers.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $23,208.00
  • Application Deadline: May 1st for Fall, November 1st for Spring & March 1st for Summer

#21 Southwestern College

Santa Fe, NM

Master of Arts in Art Therapy/Counseling

southwestern-college-santa-fe-nm-master-of-arts-in-art-therapy-counselingSouthwestern College offers a Master of Arts in Art Therapy/Counseling. This degree is designed to provide an integrative approach to art and therapy with a spiritual connection. Students are engaged throughout the program in creating art and engaging in the artistic process. Graduates will be prepared to pursue licensure in both Art Therapy and Counseling. Attention is paid throughout the program to preparing graduates to be well positioned to be successful professionally.

Courses include: Foundations: History and Theories of Counseling; Applied Theories of Human Development; Psychopathology; History of Art Therapy; Archetypal Psychology; Multicultural Awareness; Group Dynamics; Art Therapy Techniques; Studio Art; Theories of Art Therapy; Professional Ethics in Art Therapy/Counseling; Addiction Assessment and Treatment in Art Therapy/Counseling; Career and Life Development; Theory and Practice of Family Art Therapy/Counseling; and Research Methods.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $22,800.00
  • Credits Required: 60

#20 Phillips Graduate University

Chatsworth, CA

Master of Arts in Psychology with an Emphasis in Marriage and Family Therapy/Art Therapy

phillips-graduate-university-chatsworth-ca-master-of-arts-in-psychology-with-an-emphasis-in-marriage-and-family-therapy-art-therapyA Master of Arts in Psychology with an Emphasis in Marriage and Family Therapy/Art Therapy is offered at Phillips Graduate University. This is a 64 credit program that includes the required completion of 700 hours of supervised clinical experience. Students in the program will be a part of the marriage and family therapy student cohort while also engaging in smaller art therapy classes allowing for both individualized learning and connection with faculty as well as broader networking and support opportunities from the larger cohort.

Courses include: Family Therapy: Systemic Approaches; Developmental Psychology; Foundations of Counseling and Psychotherapy; History and Literature of Art Therapy; Studio Art Therapy Principles; Diversity and Social Justice in Families, Schools and Other Systems; Introduction to Research; Art Therapy Approaches to Assessment; Group Dynamics; Art Therapy Approaches to Addictions and Trauma; Couple Therapy; Sexuality and Sex Therapy; Legal, Ethical and Professional Issues; and Psychopharmacology.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $22,204.00
  • Credits Required: 66
  • Application Deadline: Rolling Admissions

#19 Nazareth College

Rochester, NY

Master of Science in Creative Arts Therapy

nazareth-college-rochester-ny-master-of-science-in-creative-arts-therapyNazareth College offers a Master of Science in Creative Arts Therapy. This is a 60 credit program that can be completed at a full or part-time pace. The program focuses on training students through hands-on experience with opportunities to consult with, observe, and provide treatment with, professionals in related human service fields. Students in the program have the opportunity to choose from a variety of electives covering topics such as Creative Art Therapy with Adult Survivors of Sexual Abuse; Creative Arts Therapy with Veterans; Creativity, Symbolism, and Metaphor; Foundations of Play Therapy; Legal and Ethical Issues in Play Therapy, and Guided Imagery and Music.

Courses include: Child Abuse Workshop; Human Development and Assessment Across the Creative Arts Therapies; Legal, Ethical, and Professional Issues in Creative Arts Therapy; Methods and Research; Psychopathology of Childhood, Adolescence and Adulthood; Principles and Techniques of Counseling and Psychotherapy; Assessment Diagnosis and Counseling; Art Therapy, Theories, Practice and Counseling; Methods and Materials in Art Therapy; Group Art Therapy and Counseling Technique; Multicultural Issues and Practice in Art Therapy; and Family Therapy and Counseling Techniques.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $21,720.00
  • Credits Required: 60
  • Application Deadline: January 15th

#18 Eastern Virginia Medical School

Norfolk, VA

Master of Science in Art Therapy and Counseling

eastern-virginia-medical-school-norfolk-va-master-of-science-in-art-therapy-and-counselingA Master of Science in Art Therapy and Counseling is available at Eastern Virginia Medical School. The Art Therapy program prepares students at EVMS to be culturally responsive and creative in their roles as art therapists working to promote healing in a variety of contexts. Graduates will be confident in their ability to help clients navigate life challenges including but not limited to supporting clients in exploring emotions, increasing self-esteem, reducing stress, and recovering from depression, anxiety, and the disease of addiction. Graduates of the program will be prepared to pursue certification as a Registered Art Therapist and a Licensed Professional Counselor.

Specializations are available in: Trauma-informed Art Therapy; Art Therapy in the Schools; Depth Psychology; Geriatric Art Therapy; Medical Art Therapy; and Licensure Preparation.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $21,251.00
  • Application Deadline: February 15th preferred submission otherwise Rolling Admissions

#17 Prescott College

Prescott, AZ

Master of Science in Counseling with a concentration in Expressive Art Therapy

prescott-college-prescott-az-master-of-science-in-counseling-with-a-concentration-in-expressive-art-therapyA Master of Science in Counseling with a concentration in Expressive Art Therapy is offered at Prescott College. Students can complete the 60 credit Master of Science in Counseling program followed by 30 credits of study for the Post-Masters Certificate in Expressive Art Therapy. Expressive art therapies covered in the program include visual art, music, movement, poetry, and performance. Prescott College offers an annual two week Summer Institute with leaders in the field of Expressive Art Therapy for a supervised experiential learning experience.

Unique Feature: Prescott College brings together masters in the field of Expressive Art Therapy from all over the world for an annual Summer Institute. Participants in the Summer Institute will have the opportunity to learn alongside fellow students and professionals in the field for a unique experiential experience. Theories, applications, techniques, and methods of Expressive Art Therapy will be covered.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $20,280.00
  • Credits Required: 90
  • Application Deadline: Rolling Admissions

#16 Ursuline College

Pepper Pike, OH

Master of Arts in Counseling and Art Therapy

ursuline-college-pepper-pike-oh-master-of-arts-in-counseling-and-art-therapyUrsuline College offers a Master of Arts in Counseling and Art Therapy. Two tracks of study are available with this degree for students to select from based on their long-term career goals. Students can choose between the Master of Arts in Counseling and Art Therapy -Clinical Mental Health Counseling Track (65 credits) or the Master of Arts in Counseling and Art Therapy- Art Therapy Track (55 credits). See the program website for more information and to make the choice best for you. Graduates of both tracks will have the educational and clinical experience to work with diverse populations in a variety of settings providing art therapy. A number of unique elective courses are offered including Creative Counseling Modalities; Special Settings and Populations; Educational Settings; Geriatrics; and Spirituality, Wholeness and the Arts.

Courses include: Professional, Ethical and Legal Issues; History and Theory of Art Therapy; Treatment of Children and Adolescents; Human Growth and Development; Counseling Theories; Group Process; Family Systems; Psychopathology; Cultural and Social Diversity; Art Therapy Studio; Orientation to Research and Writing; and Research and Evaluation.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $19,692.00
  • Credits Required: 65
  • Application Deadline: June 1st for Fall, October 1st for Spring & March 1st for Summer

#15 Albertus Magnus College

New Haven, CT

Master of Arts in Art Therapy and Counseling

albertus-magnus-college-new-haven-ct-master-of-arts-in-art-therapy-and-counselingA Master of Arts in Art Therapy and Counseling is offered at Albertus Magnus College. The Art Therapy Program is grounded in psychological theory and scientific research with an emphasis on training future leaders in the field of art therapy to have ethical and socially aware professional practices. This 60 credit program meets the educational requirements for licensure as a professional counselor in Connecticut and likely other states as well, applicants should consult the licensure board for the state they plan to practice in.

Courses include: Foundations of Art Therapy; Techniques in Art Therapy; Personality Structure; Fieldwork in Art Therapy; Art Therapy with Children and Adolescents; Group Art Therapy; Research Methods; Multi-Cultural; Art Therapy Assessment; Psychological Assessment; Reflective Art in Counseling and Therapy; Art Therapy with Adults/Seniors; Art Therapy in Substance Abuse; Theories of Counseling; and Professional Practices.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $19,648.00
  • Credits Required: 60
  • Application Deadline: Rolling Admissions

#14 Emporia State University

Emporia, KS

Master of Science in Art Therapy

emporia-state-university-emporia-ks-master-of-science-in-art-therapyEmporia State University offers a Master of Science in Art Therapy. This program is approved by the American Art Therapy Association and can be completed in two years. The program strives to maintain a low student-to-faculty ratio in order for faculty and students to work closely together throughout the students time in the program for optimal individual and professional growth. Students will have the opportunity to engage in research and work with diverse populations. Students who are interested in earning a dual degree can complete the dual curriculum which will lead to both a Master’s of Science in Art Therapy Counseling and a Master’s of Science in Clinical Counseling.

Courses include: Art Therapy Foundations; Theory and Practice of Appraisal in Counseling; Diagnosis and Treatment of Mental Disorders; Art Therapy Group Dynamics and Special Populations; Counseling Theories; Introduction to Art Therapy Research; Group Process in Counseling; Developmental and Treatment Models in Art Therapy; Ethical, Professional, and Legal Issues; Multicultural Issues in Counseling and Related Fields; Research Design and Writing; Relationship and Family Counseling; and Professional Development in Art Therapy.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $18,924.00
  • Credits Required: 57

#13 Georgia College & State University

Milledgeville, GA

Master of Arts in Art Therapy

georgia-college-state-university-milledgeville-ga-master-of-arts-in-art-therapyA Master of Arts in Art Therapy is offered through the College of Health Sciences at Georgia College. The program emphasizes a commitment to social and cultural advancement. Students will be grounded in art therapy education with the practical knowledge and clinical skills to work with diverse populations in a variety of roles from teacher to therapist. All students will engage in clinical and fieldwork with at least three different placements for experience working with children, adolescents, adults, and seniors in a range of clinical settings.

Courses include: History and Philosophy Art Therapy; Art Therapy Theory and Practice; Clinical Group Methods; Art Therapy with Children; Art Therapy Practicum with Children; Art Therapy with Adults; Art Therapy Practicum with Adults; Comprehensive Examination; Thesis/Final Project Research; and Thesis/Final Project Defense.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $18,486.00
  • Credits Required: 48
  • Application Deadline: April 1st for Summer admission, July 1st for Fall admission, November 1st for Spring admission

#12 Lesley University

Cambridge, MA

Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling: Expressive Arts Therapy

lesley-university-cambridge-ma-master-of-arts-in-clinical-mental-health-counseling-expressive-arts-therapyLesley University offers a Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling: Expressive Arts Therapy. Students in the program will learn to use expressive arts to facilitate creativity and work effectively with individuals, groups, and communities on their path to wellness. Students will learn how to select from expressive arts such as music, drama, dance, writing, and visual arts to best meet their clients’ needs and support them in reaching their goals. The program emphasizes a commitment to social justice, socio-cultural identity, and improving clients emotional, physical, and behavioral health.

Courses include: Principles and Practices of Expressive Arts Therapy; Orientation to Expressive Therapies; Theories in Expressive Arts Therapy; Theory and Practice of Group Work: Expressive Arts Therapy; Expressive Arts Therapy Studio; Human Development Across the Lifespan; Standards and Ethics in Clinical Practice; Examining Power, Privilege and Oppression in Clinical Practice; Research and Evaluation; Psychopathology and Clinical Practice; Theories of Mental Health Counseling; and Assessment and Mental Health Counseling.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $17,550.00
  • Credits Required: 60
  • Application Deadline: December 1st & March 15th

#11 Caldwell University

Caldwell, NJ

Master of Arts in Mental Health Counseling with Art Therapy Specialization

caldwell-university-caldwell-nj-master-of-arts-in-mental-health-counseling-with-art-therapy-specializationA Master of Arts in Counseling with Mental Health Counseling/ Art Therapy Specialization is available at Caldwell University. This CACREP accredited program requires the completion of 63 credits and meets professional standards for licensure as a clinical mental health counselor as well as registration as an art therapist and licensure as a professional art therapist. A number of unique electives are available to students allowing students to complete focused study in areas that they expect to be relevant, or plan to focus on, in their professional practice such as Treatment of Trauma; Spirituality in Counseling and Art Therapy; Issues of Grief in Counseling; and Sexual Issues in Counseling.

Courses include: Research Methods and Statistics; Introduction to Mental Health Counseling; Legal and Ethical Issues in Counseling; Assessment Methods in Counseling; Diagnosis and Treatment of Psychopathology; Career Counseling; Lifespan Development; History and Development of Art Therapy; Art Therapy Methods; Cultural and Social Diversity; Theory and Application; Art-based Assessment; Treatment of Children and Adolescents; Professional Practice; and Group Process.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $17,550.00
  • Credits Required: 63
  • Application Deadline: April 1st for Summer admission, June 1st for Fall admission, December 1st for Spring admission

#10 The College of New Rochelle

New Rochelle, NY

Master of Science in Art Therapy / Counseling

the-college-of-new-rochelle-new-rochelle-ny-master-of-science-in-art-therapy-counselingThe College of New Rochelle offers a Master of Science in Art Therapy/Counseling. The program works to train students to use art throughout their clinical practice with knowledge and understanding grounded in psychology theory including psychoanalysis, ego psychology, and object relations. The studio art experience is emphasized throughout the course of the 60 credit program. The curriculum is designed to prepare graduates to pursue professional licensure as a counselor.

Courses include: Introduction to Art Therapy, Ethics and Fieldwork; Human Development; Art Therapy Assessment; Psychopathology for Art Therapists; Art Therapy with Groups; Research Methodology for Art Therapists; The Psychology of Art Materials; Theories of Career Counseling; Interviewing and Counseling; and Counseling the Culturally Diverse.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $17,406.00
  • Credits Required: 60

#9 Cedar Crest College

Allentown, PA

Master of Arts in Art Therapy

cedar-crest-college-allentown-pa-master-of-arts-in-art-therapyA Master of Arts in Art Therapy is available at Cedar Crest College. Students will learn to use art as a healing tool to promote health and wellness across the lifespan. This is a studio-based program that works to meet the standards of the American Art Therapy Association. Students will learn to develop self-awareness in order to be able to help clients increase their own self-awareness. Graduates will have an ethical and strengths-based approach to working with diverse populations as mental health clinicians in a variety of human service settings.

Courses include: Research Design and Methodology; Theories and Systems of Counseling Psychology; History and Theory of Art Therapy; Psychopathology; The Studio as a Therapeutic Environment; Investigations in the Treatment of Trauma; Cultural Perspectives in Art Therapy; Group Art Therapy; Professional Ethics for Art Therapists; Artistic Development across the Lifespan; and Theories of Assessment in Art Therapy.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $16,860.00
  • Application Deadline: Rolling admissions

#8 Notre Dame de Namur University

Belmont, CA

Master of Arts in Art Therapy

notre-dame-de-namur-university-belmont-ca-master-of-arts-in-art-therapyNotre Dame De Namur University offers a Master of Arts in Art Therapy. The University offers this graduate degree in Art Therapy through the Art Therapy Psychology Department. The department also offers a Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy. Both the Master of Arts in Art Therapy and the Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy prepare students to pursue professional licensure as well as certification as a Registered Art Therapist. Additionally, a Ph.D. in Art Therapy is offered through the department. Graduates will be prepared to work professionally with children, adolescents, couples, and families through individual, family, and/or group therapy in diverse settings.

Courses include: History and Foundations of Art Therapy; Communication and Counseling Skills; Advanced Human Development; Methods of Group and Family Therapy; Psychological Assessment; Psychopathology; Substance Abuse: Theory, Treatment, Assessment; Human Sexuality; Psychopharmacology; Professional Ethics and the Law; Child Abuse; Domestic Violence: Assessment and Treatment; Art Therapy Techniques: Group Experience; Career Counseling; and Research Methodology.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $16,128.00
  • Credits Required: 63
  • Application Deadline: April 1st for Summer admission, August 1st for Fall admission, December 1st for Spring admission

#7 Edinboro University of Pennsylvania

Edinboro, PA

Master of Arts in Counseling – Art Therapy

edinboro-university-of-pennsylvania-edinboro-pa-master-of-arts-in-counseling-art-therapyEdinboro University offers a Master of Arts in Counseling-Art Therapy degree. This program is offered 100% online or through a combination of online and on-campus courses, students can select the program of study that best meets their individual needs. Students in the program will engage in art therapy education, clinical training through community service, and research projects. Graduates of this 60 credit program will be qualified to pursue credentials as a nationally Registered Art Therapist and as a Licensed Professional Counselor. Students who plan to practice outside the state of Pennsylvania should consult their home state licensure board for more information.

Unique Feature: A unique feature at Edinboro University is that they offer three different paths towards a career as an art therapist. Students can choose to earn the Master of Arts in Counseling in Art Therapy or they can choose to earn a Master of Arts in Counseling in Clinical Mental Health with a Post-Master’s Certificate in Art Therapy. Additionally, an opportunity is available for current mental health counselors to earn only the Post-Master’s Certificate in Art Therapy which is a good option for therapists who would like to integrate art into their current professional practice and earn the Registered Art therapist Credentials.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $13,500.00
  • Credits Required: 60
  • Application Deadline: February 15th

#6 Seton Hill University

Greensburg, PA

Master of Arts in Art Therapy with a Specialization in Counseling Program

seton-hill-university-greensburg-pa-master-of-arts-in-art-therapy-with-a-specialization-in-counseling-programA Master of Arts in Art Therapy with a Specialization in Counseling is available at Seton Hill University. The program focuses on integrating clinical and art-based training to support students in their ability to work professionally as counselors to assess, diagnose, and treat a variety of issues and concerns facing individuals across the lifespan. Students are encouraged to be self-reflective and grow not only professionally but also personally throughout their time in the program.

Courses include: Counseling History and Practice; Interpersonal Processes; Art Therapy Theory and Practice; Multicultural Therapy; Professional, Legal, and Ethical Issues; Art Therapy with Children; Art Therapy Studio; Introduction to Research; Psychopathology; Issues in Art Therapy Practice; Couples and Family Systems; Lifespan Development; Assessment; Art Therapy with Adults; Art Therapy with Families; Art Therapy with Groups; and Vocational and Career Counseling.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $13,212.00
  • Credits Required: 60
  • Application Deadline: July 1st for Fall admission, November 30th for Spring admission

#5 Mount Mary University

Milwaukee, WI

Master of Science in Art Therapy

mount-mary-university-milwaukee-wi-master-of-science-in-art-therapyMount Mary University offers a Master of Science in Art Therapy with a concentration in Counseling. The Art Therapy Department offers this program with a focus on art-based clinical training. The program is focused on supporting students and faculty in working together to learn and grow artistically and professionally. Guest lecturers are brought in to enhance and broaden students’ perspectives. Students can choose to enroll in the program with a full-time or part-time course load.

Courses include: Group and Institutional Dynamics; Theories of Counseling and Art Psychotherapy; Multicultural Issues in Art Therapy; Human Growth and Development; Ethical and Professional Issues; Techniques of Practice; Career Development; Addictions; Psychopathology; Art Therapy Research; Assessment; Family Systems; Clinical Treatment and Evaluation; Advanced Issues in Clinical Mental Health and Trauma Counseling.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $12,960.00
  • Credits Required: 60
  • Application Deadline: February 15th

#4 Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville

Edwardsville, IL

Master of Arts in Art Therapy Counseling

southern-illinois-university-edwardsville-edwardsville-il-master-of-arts-in-art-therapy-counselingA Master of Arts in Art Therapy Counseling is offered through the Department of Art and Design at Illinois University Edwardsville. Students will engage in coursework in the classroom, research, and practicum experiences for the development of theoretical and clinical skills. The program is selective, accepting only 10 students each year, with a low student-to-faculty ratio. A unique feature of this graduate program is their ability to offer graduate assistantships to qualified students which can include tuition waivers and stipends.

Courses include: Counseling Techniques in Art Therapy; Assessment of Individuals and Families; Art Therapy with Groups; Family Art Therapy; Developmental Theory and Art Therapy; Counseling Theory and Art Therapy; Career counseling; Professional Ethics and Legal Issues; Art Therapy with Children and Adolescents; Art Therapy Counseling with Adults; and Substance Use Services.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $11,282.00
  • Credits Required: 60
  • Application Deadline: January 15th

#3 Ottawa University-Phoenix

Phoenix, AZ

Master of Arts in Counseling: Expressive Arts Therapy

ottawa-university-phoenix-phoenix-az-master-of-arts-in-counseling-expressive-arts-therapyOttawa University offers a Master of Arts in Counseling: Expressive Arts Therapy. Concentrations are offered to enhance professional development in Addictions Counseling; Christian Counseling; Expressive Arts Therapy; Gero Counseling; Marriage and Family Therapy; and Treatment of Trauma, Abuse, and Deprivation. Students will learn to use art as a healing tool with diverse populations in a range of settings such as schools, community mental health clinics, churches, hospitals, and private practice. Graduates of the program will be prepared to pursue professional licensure at the state level, applicants should consult the licensing board of the state they plan to practice in for more information.

Courses include: Graduate Counseling Seminar in Clinical Foundations; Counseling Theories; Social/Cultural Concerns in Counseling; Counseling and the Helping Professions; Human Growth and Development; Group Counseling Dynamics; Methods and Models of Research; Professional and Ethical Issues in Counseling; Life Planning and Career Development; Theory/Techniques in Marriage and Family Counseling; Introduction to Substance Abuse, Addictions and Related Disorders; and Field Placement.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $10,620.00
  • Credits Required: 51

#2 Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College

Saint Mary of the Woods, IN

Master of Arts in Art Therapy

saint-mary-of-the-woods-college-saint-mary-of-the-woods-in-master-of-arts-in-art-therapyA Master of Arts in Art Therapy is available at Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College. The program is set up to meet the needs of students that are unable to engage in a traditional graduate degree. Students in this three year, collaborative, cohort model program will complete courses online and engage in three on-campus residencies each year. Training also includes three supervised clinical experiences in collaboration with a registered art therapist. The program emphasizes a commitment to spirituality and creativity in counseling. The coursework is designed to meet the standards and guidelines of the American Art Therapy Association and the Art Therapy Credentials Board.

Courses include: Theories and Techniques of Art Therapy; Evaluation and Critical Thinking in Art Therapy; Assessment Techniques in Art Therapy; Multicultural Art Therapy; Clinical Art Therapy; Art Therapy through the Lifespan; Art Therapy and Spiritual Growth; Group Supervision; Group Dynamics in Art Therapy and Counseling; Psychopathology; and Theories and Techniques of Counseling.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $10,490.00
  • Credits Required: 54
  • Application Deadline: April 30th

#1 Marywood University

Scranton, PA

Master of Arts in Art Therapy

marywood-university-scranton-pa-master-of-arts-in-art-therapyMarywood University offers a Master of Arts in Art Therapy. Through courses in art, ethics, and attention to spiritual values the program focuses on training students for professional careers as art therapists. Students have the opportunity to integrate the practice of art with academic and clinical theory for the purpose of providing mental health services to diverse populations. Graduates will be prepared to pursue certification as an art therapist and licensure as a professional counselor.

Courses include: Introduction to Art Therapy; Ethical Issues in Art Therapy; Art Based Research and Assessment; Multicultural Issues in Art Therapy; Art Therapy Studio; Group Process in Art Therapy; Expressive Art Workshop; Trauma and Resiliency in Art Therapy; Psychology of Art; Introduction to Family Art Therapy; Therapies in the Treatment of Addictions; Research Methodology; Psychopathology; and Child Psychopathology.

  • Average Graduate Tuition: $9,300.00
  • Credits Required: 60
  • Application Deadline: Rolling admissions

 

Methodology: To develop this ranking, we used the Institute of Education Sciences’ College Navigator to gather a list of schools that offered an art therapy program as a masters degree. Data was gathered for the average graduate tuition. Schools were then ranked on affordability.

This concludes our ranking of the best master’s degrees in art therapy. We think you might also like the following articles: