Art Therapy (MA)

Department Website

Program Description

This 60-credit Master of Arts program in Art Therapy prepares graduates to become a licensed creative arts therapist in New York State. Coursework integrates psychotherapy and visual arts practice to engage the creative power of art for clinical assessment and treatment. The curriculum promotes scholarly research and evidence-based clinical praxis, cross-cultural competency with appreciation of social justice, and fluency with evolving technologies. Students are required and encouraged to study a wide range of psychological frameworks through a variety of courses to become familiar with a range of theoretical approaches. Well versed in visual arts and psychology, students synthesize key principles in art therapy interventions and adapt the use of art materials and the creative process to effectively respond to diverse physical and psychological needs. Through studio courses, clinical  fieldwork and internship, students develop an identity as both an art therapist, prepared to become a member of a multidisciplinary team in the diagnosis, planning, and treatment of individuals and groups, and a practicing artist. 


Every summer the program offers students a unique internship opportunity to experience and practice clinical applications of art therapy in specific cultural contexts, such as in Tanzania, Peru, South Africa, Brazil, India, Ghana, and Bolivia.

Career Opportunities

Art therapy has grown rapidly over the past few decades, broadening the therapeutic potential of the arts in diverse settings. It has continued to be recognized as an effective treatment when traditional psychotherapy approaches are unable to effectively overcome barriers associated with trauma responses, developmental challenges, cultural stigma and/or language proficiency. NYU trained art therapists have led innovative treatment for participants across the developmental spectrum, publishing outcomes and presenting findings globally. Art therapists frequently work in such settings as hospitals, community mental health centers, shelters, prisons, nursing homes, and schools.

The program fosters continued growth and development of art therapists through post-master’s courses of interest to working professionals, such as ARTT-GE 2150 Techniques/Supervision in Art Therapy. In addition, lecture series and symposia featuring speakers from the fields of art, neuroscience, psychology and psychiatry are offered. These special programs allow art therapists and related professionals to expand their knowledge and experience.

Doctoral Studies

NYU Steinhardt offers a PhD in Rehabilitation Sciences for students with a background in art therapy. See Rehabilitation Sciences (PhD) for program details.

Accreditation (CAAHEP)

New York University’s Master of Arts in Art Therapy program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP), upon the recommendation of the Accreditation Council for Art Therapy Education (ACATE).

25400 US Highway 19 North, Suite 158
Clearwater, FL 33763


Accreditation (NASAD)

NYU is an accredited institutional member of the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD).
National Association of Schools of Art and Design
11250 Roger Bacon Drive, Suite 21
Reston, VA 20190-5248
(703) 437-0700


Admission to graduate programs in the Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development requires the following minimum components:

  • Résumé/CV
  • Statement of Purpose
  • Letters of Recommendation
  • Transcripts
  • Proficiency in English

See NYU Steinhardt's Graduate Admissions website for additional information on school-wide admission. Some programs may require additional components for admissions.

See How to Apply for admission requirements and instructions specific to this program.