What is Art Therapy?
Art Therapy is a human service profession in which clients, facilitated by an art therapist, use the creative process and the resulting artwork to explore their feelings, reconcile emotional conflicts, foster self-awareness, manage behavior, develop social skills, improve reality orientation, reduce anxiety, and increase self-esteem. Art Therapy practice is grounded in the knowledge of human development, psychological theories, and counseling techniques.
Art Therapy is an effective treatment for persons experiencing developmental, medical, educational, and social or psychological impairment. It is often practiced in mental health, rehabilitation, hospital, and educational settings, and can be adapted to individual, couples, family, and group therapy formats.
What is required to practice as an Art Therapist?
In general: Minimum educational and professional standards for the profession are established by the American Art Therapy Association, Inc. (AATA). Briefly stated, all practitioners must have a Master’s degree in Art Therapy and earn the Registered Art Therapist (ATR) credential (see details below). To see a list of approved graduate programs, visitwww.americanarttherapyassociation.org.
Additionally, each state has unique licensure requirements to practice in the mental health field (Licensed Professional Counselor, Licensed Clinical Social Worker, Marriage and Family Therapist, etc.). Most art therapy and mental health Master’s programs are at least 2 years long, and graduates must complete a significant number of post-graduate supervised clinical hours as an intern in order to become fully credentialed/licensed.
In Texas: To practice as an Art Therapist in Texas, an individual must be both a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and a Registered Art Therapist (ATR). Before enrolling in an Art Therapy graduate program, it is critical to confirm that the school that meets the requirements for both.
The requirements to become an LPC in Texas can be found online at the Texas Department of State Health Services at www.dshs.state.tx.us/counselor. Each LPC applicant must have a master’s degree in counseling or related field with 48 hours of graduate course work that includes the 10 core areas listed in board rules as well as 300 practicum hours, 100 of which are direct client contact. After graduation, applicants must pass the National Counselor Exam (NCE) to become a Licensed Professional Counselor Intern (LPC-I). He/she may then begin the supervised postgraduate counseling experience (internship), which must include 3000 clock-hours with at least 1500 being direct client contact under the supervision of a board-approved supervisor. The 3000 clock-hours may not be completed in a time period of less than 18 months, and must be completed within 5 years.
What is the credentialing process for Art Therapists?
One of the credentials offered by the Art Therapy Credentials Board, Inc. (ATCB) is the Registered Art Therapist (ATR) credential, which is conferred to applicants who provide appropriate documentation including the required education, practicum hours, postgraduate experience hours, and supervision.
ATCB also offers board certification to art therapists (ATR-BC). In order to become an ATR-BC, applicants must first successfully complete the ATR application process. Upon receipt of the ATR, applicants are eligible to apply for the ATR-Be. Successfully completion of the Art Therapy Credentials Board Examination (ATCBE) is required for the ATR-Be. The ATR-BC credential requires maintenance through proof of continuing education. In 2008, ATCB began offering the Art Therapy Certified Supervisor (ATCS) to applicants who demonstrate competence in this specialty area of art therapy practice.
How do I earn my ATR credential?
It is important to understand an undergraduate degree in Art Therapy may be good preparation, but it does not qualify a person to practice as an Art Therapist. A Master’s degree is necessary, and all approved Art Therapy Master’s programs require applicants to have already obtained a minimum of eighteen (18) semester hour credits of study in studio art and a minimum of twelve (12) semester hour credits of study in psychology, which must include developmental psychology and abnormal psychology.
Before you enroll in a Master’s program, confirm that it is approved by the American Art Therapy Association and that it meets the requirements necessary to practice in the state where you plan to reside. A comprehensive list of AATA approved schools can be found at on their website.
How do I earn my ATR-BC credential?
Once you have earned the ATR, you are immediately eligible to apply to take the Art Therapy Credentials Board Examination (ATCBE). In order to take the ATCBE, you must complete the current application form, which can be downloaded from www.atcb.org.
The application should be reviewed carefully and completed in detail. If you have any questions, please contact the ATCB National Office by email or phone. The exam is administered annually during the American Art Therapy Association’s Annual Conference and simultaneously in cities nationwide.
How much does art therapy cost?
The standard counseling fee for service is $120.00 for one 60 minute individual or family counseling session and $45.00 for one 60 minute group session. Financial assistance may be available based on family size and income level with proof of income. Several insurance plans are also accepted as a method of payment.
Do you accept insurance?
The Art Station is participating as a provider for a number of insurance panels. Some examples of insurance plans currently accepted include Medicaid and CHIPS (Cook’s/Beacon Health, Amerigroup, Aetna, Superior and Traditional), Aetna, Blue Cross & Blue Shield, Cigna, Humana and United Healthcare. Call if you do not see your insurance plan on this list.
Do you offer group therapy?
Yes, groups are offered based on client need. A list of current groups offered is found under the Services tab.
What ages do you serve?
Clinical art therapy services are available for most ages. The Art Station staff generally works with school-aged children, teens and adults. While minimal communication and gross motor skills are necessary in art therapy, most services are adapted to the age and developmental needs of the individual child.
How do we begin services?
If you are interested in receiving services at The Art Station, please call (817)921-2401 to determine the immediate availability of services.