• Project Title: CathARTic: How Effective is Art Therapy as a Treatment of Trauma?

  • BASIS Advisor: John Hight

  • Internship Location: BASIS Independent McLean and American Art Therapy Association

  • Onsite Mentor: Ms. Fors and Dr. McFarland

Cathartic- the psychological relief through the expression of strong emotions; causing catharsis. What better way to express emotion than through art? Research has shown that art therapy can aid in the vital life skills in managing anxiety, reacting to stress, and improving the quality of life. However, there is still a large amount of research since some variables have shown no conclusions in certain trials, such as the reduction of anxiety symptoms in adults. My project is attempting to uncover the effectiveness of art therapy based on differences such as art mediums and age groups. I will be working at BASIS Independent McLean with our guidance counselor, Ms. Fors, to design a series of art therapy assessments and work with different grades. The purpose of this study is to analyze and discover the effects of art therapy, specifically analyzing how it helps people deal with stress and anxiety, which is important for improving quality of life.