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Creative Arts Therapies Department

Innovative Courses Taught By Field Leaders

Internationally recognized faculty train culturally aware and culturally sensitive therapists dedicated to serving a diverse client base.

Creative Arts Therapies Department

Innovative Courses Taught By Field Leaders

Internationally recognized faculty train culturally aware and culturally sensitive therapists dedicated to serving a diverse client base.

Creative Arts Therapies Department

Innovative Courses Taught By Field Leaders

Internationally recognized faculty train culturally aware and culturally sensitive therapists dedicated to serving a diverse client base.

Creative Arts Therapies Department

The Department of Creative Arts Therapies provides students with the most comprehensive and the highest-quality education in their respective creative arts therapy discipline.

Through an integrated blend of classroom, experiential and practical learning in the field, students learn side-by-side with future colleagues in the other creative arts therapy specialties.

Program courses are taught by faculty that are national leaders in their respective fields. Students take advantage of Philadelphia’s lively arts community, which nourishes the artist, dancer and musician within and enables you to continue practicing your art form while pursuing graduate study.

The Department and Diversity

As a community of learners, Drexel’s Department of Creative Arts Therapies is committed to cultivating a diverse and dynamic student population. We are interested in, and enriched by, diversity, including but not limited to: culture, race, ethnicity, gender identification and expression, socio-economic class, religion, nationality, sexual orientation, age, learning styles, and political perspectives. We value these identities, shaped by experience, which support empathetic understanding and enlivened critical thinking in and outside of the classroom and in field placements.

Here in this community, we are aware of our past and present shortcomings and deficiencies. We understand that our programs, like the society in which we live, have too long habitually failed to provide just and plentiful opportunities and resources to all people, a perpetual misstep that has resulted in recurrent exclusion for some and disproportionate inclusion for others. We strive for an expansion of diversity. We recognize, embrace and proclaim that it is only by welcoming all people that we may reach our full, and true, potential as an educational community.


The Department of Creative Arts Therapies offers three Master of Arts degrees: Art Therapy and Counseling, Dance/Movement Therapy and Counseling, and Music Therapy and Counseling. The 90 quarter-credit curricula can be completed in two years on a full-time basis. We encourage full-time enrollment, yet part-time study can be arranged.

We also offer a PhD in Creative Arts Therapies, an innovative and unique research degree for art therapists, dance/movement therapists, and music therapists who are interested in focusing their careers on scholarly pursuits and academic leadership in their specific discipline.

Master of Arts in Art Therapy and Counseling
Engage in art therapy at a prestigious health center aligned to a school of fine arts.

Master of Arts in Dance/Movement Therapy Counseling
Integrate dance and movement into a whole-body approach to mental health.

Master of Arts in Music Therapy and Counseling
Study in the only music therapy program housed within an academic health center.

PhD in Creative Arts Therapies
Earn your PhD in a culture of creativity, innovation, initiative, and support.

Post-Master's Certificate in Art Therapy

Post-Master's Certificate in Dance/Movement Therapy

Post-Master's Certificate in Music Therapy

Creative Arts Therapies Faculty

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News & Events



Joke Bradt, PhD, an associate professor in the Creative Arts Therapies department at the College of Nursing and Health Professions, was recently chosen as a participant for the first cohort class of the Mixed Methods Research Training program at Johns Hopkins University. As 1 of 14 national participants, Bradt will receive extensive training in the art of Mixed Methods research.

Joke BradtFor consideration, Bradt was required to prepare a two page concept paper on a potential study she wanted to submit to the National Institutes of Health (NIH). She also had to complete a one page personal statement about why she wanted to be a part of Johns Hopkins Mixed Methods program.

Mixed Methods research involves the seamless integration of quantitative and qualitative research methods into a research study. “When you are just using quantitative data, for example, you are looking at the efficacy of an intervention and how it works,” said Bradt, “but you may not understand why and how it works or how the participants perceive it.” Integrating qualitative and quantitative data together makes research projects stronger and more cohesive.

The program has two goals. The first is to help scholars develop into advanced mix methods researchers so they can tackle more complex issues involved in their future research. They will learn the basics of mixed methods, and also learn how it is best used in projects. The second goal is to prepare all scholars to submit research applications to the NIH. This is achieved by each scholar completing a year-long training period, involving a series of webinars and other educational resources. Furthermore, an added benefit of the program is paring each of the 14 scholars with their own mentors. These mentors are experts in mixed methods training, and act to provide guidance for the entire year, helping scholars submit successful research applications to the NIH.

The mixed methods program also aims to develop all 14 scholars into mixed method “consultants” for their respective higher education institutions. “I want to be a resource to Drexel,” elaborated Bradt. “I want to assist other Drexel researchers with mixed methods research via brainstorming, or even take on a more formal consultant role for mixed methods research.”

Bradt is also looking forward to meeting her fellow scholars. “I am excited to come together with different scholars from different disciplines because it’s interesting to see how they each attack a certain research problem.” Bradt will have the opportunity to meet her fellow scholars on June 15, 2015 at the Johns Hopkins University School of Public Health.

Bradt is also serving as conference co-chair of the Mixed Methods International Research Association (MMIRA) Regional Conference hosted at Drexel University College of Nursing and Health Professions in collaboration with MMIRA. “Improbable Dialogues:  Interprofessional Mixed Methods Research Collaborations,” being held on Friday, June 19, Drexel University Center City Campus. The purpose of this one-day seminar is to bring together researchers from multiple disciplines to focus on improbable interprofessional topical and methodological dialogues hoping to create new possibilities for research that could enrich and expand the scope, reach, accessibility, and perspectives on critical issues in a complex global culture. Nancy Gerber, PhD, ATR-BC, director of the PhD program in Creative Arts Therapies, is conference chair.


Congratulations to Nicole Porter Willcox, a Creative Arts Therapy alumna, who was named one of Drexel’s 2015 40 Under 40!  At just 34 years old, she has already made quite an impact on a community in need and has created a model capable of helping devastated communities nationwide.

Following the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, Willcox volunteered for three months in Newtown, CT. “I was there to educate the community on how art therapy heals trauma and provide clinical services for the families requesting help.” She then established Emerald Sketch, an art therapy response team which links art therapists to communities with recent history of trauma and loss. 

Willcox credits Nancy Gerber, PhD, an associate clinical professor and Director of the PhD program in Creative Arts Therapies, for encouraging her to explore her interests.  “The Creative Arts Therapies program at Drexel immerses students in experience.  I spent my time in the Therapeutic Nursery at the Children’s Crisis Treatment Center.  It was there that I developed my first sustainable art therapy program and established the model that would later evolve into my facility in Newtown.” 

As for the future, Willcox hopes Emerald Sketch will grow into a national response team and “educate children to live a safe and healthy lifestyle in an era of technology, modern hazards and heightened anxiety.”


If you are a healthy adult between the ages of 18 and 60 years and a member of the Drexel community (students/ faculty or staff) we would be delighted to have you join our research.   The research, which is sponsored by Drexel University Office of Faculty Development and Equity, requires about one hour of your time in our onsite creative arts therapy studio, and involves working with art materials and verbally sharing your experiences with us. You will also be asked to share a very small saliva sample before and after the research. The research poses minimal stress and no prior artistic experience is required.

If interested please email Dr. Girija Kaimal at or Ms. Kendra Ray at

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