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Girija Kaimal

Girija Kaimal


Assistant Professor

Creative Arts Therapies Department

267.359.5507 P
267.359.5579 F
1601 Cherry Street, Room 7109

Dr. Kaimal has been on the adjunct faculty in the creative arts therapies department since 2008 and joined as full-time faculty in the doctoral program in 2013. She has been principal investigator for evaluation research on longitudinal studies funded by the U.S. Department of Education, The School District of Philadelphia, William Penn Foundation, Ford Foundation, Lehigh University and Temple University. Dr. Kaimal holds a Doctorate in Human Development and Psychology from the Harvard University Graduate School of Education, Master of Arts in Art Therapy from Drexel University and a Bachelor of Arts in Design from the National Institute of Design in India.

Research Interests:

Dr Kaimal's research aims to understand the implications of autobiographical narratives and creative self-expression especially among underrepresented and vulnerable populations, on health and well being She is particularly interested in the role of creativity and self-expression in empowerment and learning about self and others. Dr. Kaimal currently leads a multi-year evaluation study on leadership development funded by the U.S. Department of Education and Lehigh University. As part of this study the research team is examining how participation in the arts could ignite learning transfer to leadership practices. She is also conducting a pilot study on the link between biomarkers and creative visual self-expression. As part of her interest in internationalizing the context of scholars and students, she serves as a research adviser on international development projects related to gender equity and arts-based psychosocial support for vulnerable children in trauma zones. She is a practicing visual artist and her work explores the intersection of transnational identity and sustainable artistic practices.

Other prior research experiences include conducting secondary analyses of qualitative data from a National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) longitudinal study of depression in families and managing a four year National Institute of Deafness and other Communication Disorders (NIDCD) multi-disciplinary study at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia/ University of Pennsylvania on genetic testing for hearing loss.

Professional Society:

In addition to her teaching and research, Dr Kaimal serves on the steering committee of ArtsRising Philadelphia, The Upper Dublin School District Educational Advisory Committee and the Harvard Schools Committee. She is also a member of the American Art Therapy Association, The American Evaluation Association among others and also serves as reviewer for the Qualitative Health Research journal, The Journal of Adolescent Research and Urban Review.