ECArTE Full Member


Cork: CIT Crawford College of Art & Design


Course Title and Qualification Awarded: MA in Art Therapy

Duration: Two years full-time or three years part-time

Entry Requirements:

  • Honours degree or equivalent in Visual Art or professional qualification. Where graduate qualifications are not in the visual arts, evidence of a substantial body of current and recent art work is essential
  • Basic understanding of art therapy
  • Two statements (included in application form) on the individuals understanding of the nature of art therapy and the reason for wanting to train as an art therapist
  • Two references
  • Minimum of one year’s clinical or care work, paid or voluntary
  • Portfolio of personal art work
  • Maturity and life experience
  • Willingness to enter personal therapy
  •  Individual and group interview process

Course Philosophy and Main Theoretical Approaches

The MA in Art Therapy aims to offer prospective practitioners with clinical skills to work within a range of clinical settings and with clients/ service users who present a wide range of clinical needs. The course maintains a strong arts perspective and encourages students to explore the relationship of the arts to therapy through their ongoing studio work, as well as exploring the role played by the arts within health and social settings. The course approach has a psychodynamic influence and a strong grounding in attachment-based theories, drawing on models of therapy from Freud, Jung, Winnicott, and Object Relations Theory.

Course Content

Theoretical Studies

The theoretical foundation of art therapy is drawn from the history of art making, creativity and the psychotherapies. Models and approaches within the field of art therapy are discussed and debated within the framework of a lecture and seminar series throughout the training. There is also an introduction to developmental psychology and psychiatry.

Experiential and Studio Practice

Through participation in experiential workshops, training groups and ongoing studio practice whilst also integrating phenomenology-based life drawing experiences, students learn to integrate theory and practice. These experiential spaces provide a forum for engagement in the art therapy process, self-exploration, continuing personal development and creativity. Emphasis is placed on the ongoing studio practice for students.

Clinical and Professional Practice

Students are allocated placements in a wide range of clinical settings and working with a diverse range of client groups. They are supervised in the facilitation of clients’ therapy programmes and encouraged to reflect upon their clinical experiences with regard to theoretical understanding.  Supervision of the clinical experience is central to the art therapy training and is provided in small groups at CIT CCAD and individually on placement. Students are encouraged to experience a number of substantial and differing placement settings over the course of their training.

Language: All modules are taught in English.

Student Exchange Opportunities: Proactive in exploring ERASMUS opportunities.

Current Research:

The role and relationship of the artists to the art therapist. Published 2011

Knowing in Action - Image based reflective learning presented October 2016

Creating Meaning and Connection: supporting the loss of an unborn child through image making presented September 2017

When there are no words: Loss, meaning making and the arts presented September 2017

Mapping Beyond Creativity Published 2016. Presented 2017

Deeply Listening through Sensory Perception and Heart Intelligence. Presented March 2017

Research Collaboration:

CIT CCAD has recently completed an Erasmus+ project Expanding Realities

CIT CCAD is interested in research collaboration with ECArTE Members.

Professional Association: Irish Association of Creative Arts Therapists (IACAT)

Email address:

Professional Body or Ministry: Students are obliged to register with IACAT in order to practise as art therapists. The course is approved by IACAT

Code of Ethics: IACAT code of ethics


Contact details & Postal Address

Gráinne Young, MA Art Therapy Course Co-ordinator

Email:  Telephone number: 00 353 21 4335246

Department of Arts in Health & Education

CIT Crawford College of Art & Design

46 Grand Parade, Cork, Ireland

University website:

Arts Therapies Certificate Courses

Principles of Sesame Drama & Movement Therapy Certificate

This certificate course introduces students to the theory and practice of Sesame Drama & Movement Therapy. This approach uses story-making, play and non-verbal communication as an indirect, non-confronting, right-brain responsive therapy.  Its intention is to restore people’s listening to a deeper part of their being which is fundamentally healthy and creative, but which goes unrecognised, shadowed by attention on diagnosis or pathology. Through experiential workshops and lectures, participants will learn techniques and approaches to using Sesame with various clients, groups and situations.

This course runs twice a semester in four-day blocks.


Principles of Art Therapy Certificate

This certificate course is particularly suited to individuals who are considering training as an Art Therapist in the future or want to find out more about the art therapy process. It offers an introduction to the core principles of Art Therapy – boundaries, the image, self-inquiry, process and the triangular relationship. The course aims to provide a deeper understanding of the art therapy process through experiential workshops, lectures and seminars. Journaling and essay writing challenge participants to develop the practice of reflecting on their experiential learning and relating it to theory.

This course runs once a month in two-day blocks.


Cork Art Therapy Summer School

This summer school provides a unique opportunity to learn about and experience the Art Therapy process. For some this summer school may be the first steps on the road to a career in Art Therapy. For others it may be an opportunity to re-engage with their creative identity. For trainee and qualified therapists’ it may provide continuing professional development. Every year this course, with its intensive workshop and lecture series, proves to be an invaluable personal encounter, whatever one’s motivation for attending.


Contact Details:

Louise Foott      Email:

Head of Department

Department of Arts in Health & Education

CIT Crawford College of Art & Design

46 Grand Parade, Cork, Ireland

University website: