An Investigation into the Effectiveness of the Arts Therapies

By Measuring Symptomatic and Significant Life Change for People Between the Ages of 16-65 with Continuing Mental Health Problems

Helen Odell-Miller, M. Westacott, P. Hughes, D. Mortlock and C. Binks

December 2001

Jointly funded by Addenbrooke's NHS Trust and APU


Arts therapies treatments offer patients therapy through non-verbal means i.e. art forms such as music, art, drama or dance movement. They are particularly effective where normal communication is absent or has broken down.

This study was a randomised control design with four separate questionnaires to measure their effectiveness. The numerical results were not conclusive, owing to high variability and small sample size, but the qualitative data reveal interesting facets of the process, for example that the therapist and patient's perceptions of the treatment coincide in all treatment cases.

Full thesis