An Introduction to Art Therapy - Expression and Meaning - Online course

About the course

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A series of three short courses that offer an introduction to the potential for art therapy to be a source of personal feeling and meaning. Designed as a first step towards further professional qualification or as an opportunity to discover how therapeutic art making may be adapted to different contexts and vulnerable clients and groups.

Sign up for one, or all three, of these online courses. Each course offers time for students to engage with personal art making, discussion and reflection and are linked by short presentations on key approaches to art therapy in different contexts.

The courses are offered to anyone interested in an expressive form of art making. Previous experience is not a pre-requisite. Students will be sent a list of art materials to use during the course in their own home or context. Information on further training opportunities in art therapy and a recommended reading list will be provided.

Course 2. Expression and Meaning: Introduction to Art Therapy

Offered over two half days, this second course explores the expressive, inherent qualities in therapeutic art making and examines the potential for personal discovery and learning. In this experiential workshop, students will engage with art materials and generate images creatively and spontaneously. The creative part of the process will be followed by an opportunity to reflect as a group about the possible levels of meaning in the images that have emerged. This is both and active thinking through making session as well as a point of shared reflection.

Learning outcomes

  • Learn an introductory understanding of the key concepts of art therapy.
  • Develop an appreciation of art making as a therapeutically diverse process.
  • Discover art making as means of personal expression and meaning.
  • Understand, at an introductory level, the role the art therapist has to effect change for the client.
  • Acquire knowledge of the benefits of art therapy for vulnerable clients in a range of settings.

Course summary

  • Online learning with an experienced lecturer and art therapist.
  • Make links to theory and art therapy practice at introductory level.
  • Understand how the art therapeutic process supports vulnerable adults and children.
  • Suitable for teachers, care workers and artists working creatively with vulnerable clients.
  • Engage with a visual expressive art process and reflect on personal feeling and meaning.

Course expert

Philippa Brown - Formerly the Professional Lead for the MA Art Therapy at the University of Hertfordshire, Philippa has over 30 years’ experience as an art therapy educator, practitioner, supervisor and artist.

Course dates

Course 2. Expression and Meaning: Introduction to Art Therapy

Monday 29 and Tuesday 30 March 2021 - 10:00 to 13:00

Course cost


Related courses


  • Course 1. Symbol and Language: An Introduction to Art Therapy - click here to take you to this course page
  • Monday 15 and 16 February 2021, 10:00 to 13:00
  • Course 3. Looking and Making: Introduction to Art Therapy - click here to take you to this course page
  • Monday 21, Tuesday 22 and Wednesday 23 June 2021 - 10:00 to 16:00

On campus

Courses take place in the School of Creative Arts. Tea and coffee are provided.

Contact us

If you wish to discuss this or any other Creative Arts short courses, please contact the short course team on 01707 285327 or

Online access

All our online courses are taught remotely using Zoom. The tutor will be delivering the class live and importantly providing feedback and answer any questions you may have during the lesson. You will need a pc or mac laptop. It is advisable that your work area is close enough to your pc/mac to enable you to gain the most out of the course. You will be given full instructions after you enrol on how to log on to the course.

Booking deadlines

Bookings for all Creative Arts Short Courses will be reviewed 2 weeks before the start date of each course. This will allow the Short Course team to determine whether a course has met the minimum number of students needed for the class to run. If a class has failed to recruit, the class will be re-scheduled and applicants will be informed and where relevant offered an alternative class.

We, therefore, encourage you to book early before the deadline to avoid disappointment.


Refunds for cancellation of places on the course shall not be made during the 14-day period immediately preceding the date on which the course commences.  For further details of cancellation terms, please see the following link



Start DateEnd DateDay and TimeCostLink
29/03/202130/03/2021Mon & Tues 10:00 to 13:00£195Apply online