Art Therapy

Serving Through Art
Healing Through Art

Students who pursue Art Therapy simultaneously bring their skills in art, and passion to help those in need, into a meaningful and strategic profession.  Art Therapy is an integrative mental health and human service profession that enriches the lives of individuals, families and communities through active art-making, creative process, applied psychological theory, and human experience within a psycho-therapeutic relationship.

The CBU Art Therapy Program is a joint program between the award winning College of Architecture, Visual Art, and Design and the renowned College of Behavioral and Social Sciences that prepares students for graduate work in Art Therapy or to pursue graduate work in Counseling (Marriage and Family Therapy OR Marriage and Family Therapy with an emphasis in Art Therapy).  Additionally, the Art Therapy program aligns itself with the educational standards set forth by the American Art Therapy Association ensuring that graduating students meet all necessary requirements to pursue graduate studied in Art Therapy.

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Degrees Offered

CBU Art Therapy program offers a flexible undergraduate degree that includes Studio Art and Psychology courses, allowing students to receive a strong foundation, and build on it with their choice of art emphasis.

Studio Art Tracks

CBU offers several studio art tracks, allowing students to specialize and distinguish themselves as artists who demonstrate professional excellence and personal integrity, are servant leaders in their communities, and who live Biblically-based, missional lives within the profession.

Student Work

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B.A. Art Therapy Studies

The pre-professional Art Therapy degree prepares students for graduate study in the field of Art Therapy or Counselling by fulfilling the undergraduate requirements for graduate school admission set forth by The American Art Therapy Association. Certified practitioners of Art Therapy integrate the practice of studio arts and the fields of human development with current theories and models of counseling.

General Education Courses

The general education requirements will follow the curriculum set forth for other university programs. Some general education requirements will be met through specific major requirements.

Lower Division Requirements

ART 201 Principles of Design and Color

Units: 3. Offered: Fall, Spring.

An introduction to the principles of two-dimensional design and color theory and their use as tools for effective visual communication.

ART 208 Studio Drawing I

Units: 4. Offered: Spring.

This course functions as the introductory drawing course for Art Majors and Minors. In it, the perceptual and technical skills, and the basic media of drawing are introduced and exercised. Drawing as an historic art form is studied and used to develop a sophisticated awareness of its current expressive potential.  Credit cannot be earned for ART 204 and ART 208.

ART 225 Sculpture I

Units: 3. Offered: Fall (Odd Years).

Basic elements of sculpture. Creating forms in clay, plaster, paper and multi-media techniques.

ART 232 Ceramics I

Units: 3. Offered: Fall, Spring.

Introduction to working with clay, using pinch, coil, slab and wheel; applying glazes, exploring decorating techniques using oxides. History of clay as an art form.

ART 283 Painting I

Units: 4. Offered: Fall (Even Years).

Projects introduce traditional painting methods in oils or acrylic paints. Applied studio work, slide lectures, group discussions, and field trips are possible. May be repeated one time for credit. Prerequisite: ART 201 or ART 204.

DES 110 Creativity: Process and Purpose

Units: 3. Offered: Fall, Spring.

This course provides an introduction to creativity through discussion and project-based learning. The course provides overview and practice of creative processes (e.g. ideation, research, empathy, proto-typing, etc), in-depth discussion of the theological foundations for creativity, and practice for developing creative habits.

PSY 213 General Psychology

Units: 3. Offered: Fall, Spring.

This introductory course is a survey of the processes of adjustment, growth, learning, remembering, perception, sensation, socialization, and emotions. It is meant to better equip students to understand and articulate their own life experiences, as well as improve their understanding of the behavior of others. This course is a prerequisite to all other courses in Psychology.

STA 144 Introduction to Statistics

Units: 3. Offered: Fall, Spring.

Mathematical theory and applications, development of formulae, principles of statistical decision theory,x` descriptive measurements, probability concepts, random variables, normal distribution, inferential statistics, sampling distributions, confidence intervals, hypothesis testing, chi-squared procedures, linear regression, and the use of computers in statistics. Prerequisite: MAT 115 or sufficient SAT, ACT or math placement exam scores and appropriate high school mathematics background.

Upper Division Requirements

ART 300 Advanced Art

Units: 4. Offered: Fall (Even Years).

An essential course for the serious art student. Projects in painting, drawing and digital media. Emphasis on developing skills and concepts. Course is designed to be repeated for credit. Section (a), emphasis in painting and drawing; section (b), emphasis in digital media using the Macintosh platform; section (c), Senior Exhibit preparation. Section (c) must be taken during student’s graduating semester. May be repeated twice for credit. Prerequisite: ART 201 or 204.

ART 301 Color, Theory and Application

Units: 4. Offered: Spring (Even Years).

This is a combination studio/lecture course that focuses exclusively on issues of color, it’s aesthetic, symbolic and psychological dimensions, as related to visual expression. This content is applicable to both fine art and design-related fields. Prerequisite: ART 201 or ARC 122.

ART 325 Sculpture II, OR ART 353 Ceramics II, OR ART 383 Painting II

Units: . Offered: .

ART 325 Sculpture II

Sculpture II is an expansion of Sculpture I. There will be an emphasis on scale and new materials such as wood, metal, and found object assemblage. A large scale collaborative object for community outreach also gets explored in this class as well as a history in object making and their various functions.  Pre-Requisite: ART 225  Offered Spring (Even Year).


ART 353 Ceramics II

Developing clay as an art form; study of properties of clay, glaze and their origin; fusion of materials; stacking and loading kiln, emphasis on wheel throwing.  Prerequisite: ART 232


ART 383 Painting II

Projects further develop skills learned in ART 283 – Painting I. Applied studio work, slide lectures, group discussions, and field trips are possible.Prerequisite: ART 283.  Offered Spring (odd years)

ART 495 Art Therapy Studio

Units: 4. Offered: Spring (Odd Years).

This course will enable students to examine the use of paints, inks, organic art processes, sculpture materials and other traditional and non-traditional art media and their use with particular client populations. Salient features of particular materials and expressive dimensions will be explored. Discussion of computer applications relevant to art therapy will be included. Students will investigate the impact of art processes and materials through ongoing participation in personal art making. By strengthening their connection to the creative process, students will gain an understanding of personal symbolic language, and arts-based learning allowing for the opportunity to integrate intellectual, emotional, artistic, and interpersonal knowledge. Prerequisite: ART 201 and DES 110; Pre or Corequisite: PSY 376

PSY 320 Life-Span Development

Units: 3. Offered: Fall, Spring.

The course addresses principles of psychological development across time and culture.  Students will understand universal stages of human development, influences on individual differences and the impact of nature and nurture. The course views human development as a unit of interrelated parts, concentrating on the relationships between the mind, body, and the socio-cultural context. Specific consideration is given to issues of integration, culture, and Biblical worldview. Prerequisite: PSY 213.

PSY 322 Theories of Personality

Units: 3. Offered: Fall, Spring.

This course is a survey of theories of personality emphasizing various viewpoints, unique theoretical perspectives, functions, and development of basic attitudes and belief systems that influence behavior throughout the life span. The course equips students to actively integrate faith (i.e., biblical principles) with the theories discussed. Prerequisite: PSY213.

PSY 328 Cognitive Psychology

Units: 3. Offered: Fall, Spring.

This course provides an introduction into the structure and functions of the mind from the viewpoint of computation, neuroscience, and philosophy. Students will examine the historical significance of this subject, how the field has changed over time, and the current important issues of thought and memory. Topics include attention processing, memory, mental imagery,  decision  making  process,  consciousness,  creativity,  and  methods  for  measuring  nformational  processing.  Prerequisite: PSY 213.

PSY 346 Abnormal Psychology

Units: 3. Offered: Fall, Spring.

Study of the dynamics, cultural implications and prevention of abnormal behavior including neuroses, psychoses, character disorders, psychosomatic reactions and other abnormal personality patterns. Textual and lecture attention will be given to the impact of the environment and oppressed populations in relation to abnormal behavior. Prerequisite: PSY 213.

PSY 376 Art Therapy

Units: 3. Offered: Fall (Odd Years).

This course is an introduction to the field of art therapy. The modern theories, methods and systems of art therapy will be surveyed. Emphasis is placed on practical application of art therapy concepts as well as the development of specific art therapy skills. Pre-Req; PSY 213

Upper Division Electives

Complete six (6) units from the following:

BEH 440 Field Experience

Units: 3. Offered: Fall, Spring, Summer.

A practical application of field experience for students in community or campus responsibilities for the Anthropology, Behavioral Science, Psychology, or Sociology majors in a field placement under professional supervision.
Fieldwork: 120 Hours

PSY 305 Developmental Psychology: Child

Units: 3. Offered: Fall.

This course examines the principles of psychological, cognitive, physical, spiritual and social development from conception to  adolescence.  A  Biblical  view  of  growth  and  change  throughout  these  developmental  periods  will  be  addressed.  Prerequisite: PSY 213.

PSY 315 Developmental Psychology: Adolescence and Adulthood

Units: 3. Offered: Spring.

This  course  examines  the  principles  of  psychological,  cognitive,  physical,  spiritual  and  social  development  from  late  childhood  to  late  adulthood.  A  Biblical  view  of  growth  and  change  throughout  these  developmental  periods  will  be  addressed. Prerequisite: PSY 213

PSY 422 Theories of Counseling

Units: 3. Offered: Fall, Spring.

A survey of modern theories of therapeutic counseling with emphasis on gaining an understanding of the psychological principles underlying these methods. Prerequisite: PSY 213.

PSY 443 Social Psychology

Units: 3. Offered: Fall.

Deals with the psychological impact of the customs, norms, institutions, and groups upon the individual and his behavior as influenced by social interaction. Prerequisite: PSY 213.

PSY 473 Psychophysiology

Units: 3. Offered: Fall, Spring.

Introduction to the neural and endocrine processes underlying brain function and behavior. Lecture only. Prerequisite: PSY 213.

Student Learning Outcomes

Art Therapy Studies Learning Outcomes (SLO)

  1. Content: Majors will demonstrate discipline knowledge and skills (theories, concepts, and terms of the discipline) through the ability to:
    1. Explain the major historical theories of psychology and their influence on developing theories, the individual and society.
    2. Understand and critique methods of critical analysis/research and articulate their influence on the field of psychology and an understanding of human behavior.
    3. Verbalize and analyze the terminology of psychology and how it relates to professional practice.
  2. Critical thinking: Majors will utilize skill in analysis, synthesis, and use of evidence; problem solving (reflective and analytical) through the ability to:
    1.  Think critically about psychological constructs, theories and research methodology through the use of comparison and contrast, problem solving and the integration of evidence from diverse contexts (research, professional practice and daily living) and worldviews (religious, ethnic, cultural).
    2. Use psychology concepts to explain personal experiences and recognize the limitations of personal experience in understanding psychological phenomenon
    3. Differentiate the science of psychology from pseudoscience/anecdote
    4. Use quantitative and/or qualitative analyses to argue for or against a particular hypotheses within specific contexts (research, professional practice and daily living)
  3. Communication: Majors will effectively use appropriate speaking and writing skills; technology literacy; research skills  as demonstrated though the ability to:
    1. Construct thorough literature reviews using APA style and applying fundamental strategies such as thesis development, revision, and correct grammar and syntax
    2. Display and communicate quantitative data clearly and concisely using basic statistics, graphs and tables
    3. Deliver effective oral presentations in a variety of communication settings appropriate to diverse audiences, integrating visual elements and professional demeanor
    4. Lead and participate effectively in group discussions, applying active listening skills and demonstrating respect for diverse views
    5. Select the most appropriate sources and databases for accessing and obtaining needed information. Evaluate the reliability, validity, quality, timeliness, potential biases, and overall credibility of these sources
  4. 4. Integrity/values: Majors will synthesize academic integrity, discipline specific ethical issues; an understanding of ethics; respect for social diversity with their discipline through the ability to:
    1. Understand and demonstrate academic integrity, including honor code requirements within university, community and professional settings
    2. Apply ethical standards of the professions of psychology, sociology and anthropology to research and practice
    3. Understand the Christian worldview and apply Biblical values and moral/ethical principles to research and practice
    4. Demonstrate sensitivity to issues of social diversity and exhibit respect for socially diverse groups
  5. Project management: Majors will exhibit team work skills and informed participation in multiple levels of community applying academic studies to the workplace and professional environment through the ability to:
    1. Work collaboratively and respectfully with individuals with diverse backgrounds
    2. Adapt to new workplace environments and changing professional needs
    3. Develop leadership and self-management skills to work effectively in a variety of social and group contexts
    4. Respond appropriately to feedback from supervisors and team members
    5. Apply academic knowledge to a variety of work and social contexts to enhance interactions and performance
  6. Creative Thinking: Majors will demonstrate the ability to engage in associative/spatial thinking dynamically channeled through various media through directed formal and conceptual problems as well as self-determined projects.
  7. Media Fluency: Majors will demonstrate an ability to command the inherent dynamics of a variety of 2&3 dimensional media as applied to directed and self-determined expressive goals.

The following documents outline a suggested course schedule.

Student Work

Studio Art Faculty

Psychology Faculty

Please see the College of Behavioral and Social Science website.