Frequently Asked Questions. Answers to questions frequently asked about the MSc Art Psychotherapy Course

1. What are the entry requirements for the MSc Art Psychotherapy course? A degree or a professional qualification /vocational qualification which has been practised over a considerable period of time ·a minimum of one year's work or voluntary experience in the helping professions ·a portfolio ranging over some years ·life experience ·some experience of either personal therapy or experiential Art Psychotherapy workshops is highly recommended.

2. What constitutes relevant work experience? Relevant work includes work in a care (nursing assistant, project worker, arts instructor etc.) or community setting, art teaching, facilitating art workshops. We appreciate that it is not always possible to obtain paid work in these areas. Voluntary work may often be obtained by contacting any Social Services or Health Service departments. It is worth enquiring locally to ascertain if an Art Therapist is employed and could offer voluntary work. Work experience gives you some basis for thinking about a career in a caring profession and also experience of working within a team or institutional setting. One major component of the MSC Art Psychotherapy entails work on a clinical practice placement and so prior experience of work setting(s) is very important.

3. Are applicants with degrees other than Fine Art considered? A large number of students embarking upon the MSc Art Psychotherapy have a degree in Fine Art. This enables students to have knowledge and experience working with media. In addition Fine Arts students will be familiar with contemporary and historical developments in art. Fine Arts students will also have written a dissertation and frequently these dissertations, directly or indirectly, relate to Art Psychotherapy. Queen Margaret University does accept some students with degrees or professional qualifications in other subjects relevant to Art Psychotherapy . Examples include a combined degree in Art and Literature, Psychology, Art History, Nursing, Occupational Therapy, Social Work, Sociology and Medicine, etc.

4. What should a portfolio include? A portfolio should demonstrate a serious involvement with art media and your own personal process of work with imagery. It is recommended that you include sketchbooks. Slides, photographs, CDs and DVDs of your work are acceptable. Some applicants prepare their portfolio by attending art classes over some years.

5. Are there other steps I can take to prepare to apply for the MSc Art Psychotherapy? Reading about Art Psychotherapy is essential as is meeting with practising Art Therapists. Introductory Art Psychotherapy courses and workshops are a helpful way of learning about the subject. These offer a very good introduction to Art Psychotherapy and are recommended as one way of participating in Art Psychotherapy experiential workshops, and learning more about the subject. Look at websites; British Association of Art Therapists , Health & Care Professions Council .

6. Does QM have Open Days? QM holds two university postgraduate open evenings, one in the autumn and one in the spring. These offer an opportunity to meet with representatives of the Art Psychotherapy courses and discuss your queries with them. The university also offers virtual meetings on those days. Please check the university website for details of the postgraduate open evenings.

7. How is the course structured?

8. What are the learning formats? The MSc Art Psychotherapy course comprises three modes of learning: Inter-personal learning workshops in which students make their own images and discuss these within a group setting. Practice Placement: supervised practice placement work with clients. This reflective practice enables students to gain experience working with individuals and groups: Lectures, discussions and seminars; academic assessment is by essay, portfolio and presentations.

9. There are two modes for the course, full and part-time. What is the length of each and how long will it take to complete the course in either mode? The full-time course runs over two years. This involves two fifteen-week semesters in each year. In year one student’s will attend lectures and workshops on two days in university and two days a week on practice placement. Students taking the part-time mode will attend university one and a half day a week and one day a week on practice placement over three or four years. The part time route will be available again from 2016 and then we take a bi-annual part time intake. There is some flexibility should part-time students be in a position to participate in studies for more than two days per week. There is also the option of transfer from full to part-time mode should personal circumstances change. At present attendance is structured as follows; The programme starts with a 5 week induction to practice placement programme in Level 1 where all students full time and part time are required to attend. It is over 2 days per week (Tues & Wed)

From week 6: Full-time YEAR 1 classes are held on Tuesdays and Wednesdays and YEAR 2 are held on Thursdays Part-time YEAR 1 classes are held on Tuesdays all day and Wednesday mornings, YEAR 2 on Wednesdays and YEAR 3 on Thursdays.

10. Do I have to arrange my own practice placement? Practice Placements are arranged by the Practice Placement Coordinator and Administrator in the School Office. Students have two practice placements during the training course. Students write a proposal identifying some of their learning needs for level 2 studies. The Practice Placement Co-ordinator will then try and match the student's learning needs with a suitable practice placement. Efforts are made to arrange practice placements in or near the city where the student resides.

11. What kinds of practice placements are offered? The range of practice placements are extensive including placements within hospitals, schools, voluntary sector organisations in the community, child and family centres, counselling services, prisons, drug and alcohol services, hospices, adult training centres, community based health centres, GP practices, community based mental health teams, stroke units, day centres for the elderly and for adults with physical and/or learning disabilities. The range of practice placements for Art Psychotherapy students changes from year to year.

12. What else do I need to know about placements? Students are required to complete a minimum of 110 days of practice placement. Participation in a weekly Supervision Seminar in university is a co-requisite of the practice placement. Students will be required to complete a Police Check/ Disclosure Scotland for their placement. International students are required to bring Police checks with them for the start of the semester at the latest. Admissions may ask for this information to arrive 3 months prior to the start of the course so that a final offer of a place can be granted.

13.Why are students required to attend personal psychotherapy for the duration of the MSc. Students are required to attend personal psychodynamic psychotherapy for the duration of the MSc Art Psychotherapy course. All of the Art Psychotherapy courses have this personal psychotherapy requirement. Some guidelines are given about finding a therapist to work (please see the British Association of Art Therapists website) but responsibility for finding a therapist rests with the student. In general students are advised to work with a therapist whose orientation is compatible with the course. Some examples of therapists in this category would be Art Therapists, Psychotherapists, and Psychodynamic Counsellors. Students are also advised to work with a therapist with a minimum of 5 years experience rather than a recently qualified therapist, and one that is UKCP or BACP or State Registered. Fees for personal therapy borne by the student range on average from £35-50 per session. It is important to bear this additional expense in mind and budget for it. Personal psychodynamic psychotherapy is seen to be supportive of the student whilst on the course and also enables a student to have personal experience of a therapeutic relationship. Therapy is also essential to work out what issues belongs to the student and what belongs to clients that the student will work with. Personal therapy is separate from the course. However, as personal therapy is a BAAT (British Association of Art Therapists) course requirement, the student's therapist will be requested to submit a letter to the university supervisor (during semester one and semester two assessment meeting) informing her of the number of sessions attended per year. Students may not graduate unless they demonstrate ongoing attendance in personal therapy, hence the letter from the student's therapist. Otherwise the student's personal therapy is distinct from the course and is confidential between student and therapist. Personal psychotherapy is predominately carried out while seeing clients during semesters, while additional sessions may be carried out over the summer.

14. What are the course fees? A full outline of the MSc Art Psychotherapy course fees and updated information on possible student funding can be found on the MSc Art Psychotherapy course pages .There are no grants and most students take out a student loan. Some applicants in the past received part funding from their employers.

15. Are there grants, trusts or scholarships for the course? No grants are available. Some students have sought funding from other sources by consulting information on Education Awards in their local library. Other students have obtained a Career Development Loan from their bank.

16. May fees be paid over the course of a year or need full fees be paid at the outset of the academic year? A full outline of the MSc Art Psychotherapy course fees and information on payment structure can be found on the MSc Art Psychotherapy course pages .

17. What sort of tutorial support is available to students? Each student on the course has a personal academic tutor whose role is to help the student to integrate the different parts of the course and to be aware of any circumstances effecting the student’s learning on the course. Tutors will meet with their tutees at least once per semester to review the student's work.

18. Is there support within college with students with special educational needs? A member of the course team is an academic disability student coordinator and is able to meet with students to discuss requirements and offer advice in liaison with the academic disability services. For example students with dyslexia may be advised how to be assessed, where to find technological support, and what sorts of extra support is available. In addition there are workshops within the university on essay preparation and some tutorials are offered for students whose first language is not English. QMU has a student counsellor who can be contacted through Student Services. QMU subscribes to an equal opportunities policy. There is an access hardship fund within the college to which students experiencing financial difficulties may apply. Information is available from

19. Are there studio facilities in the college for students wishing to continue with their own art work? There is a workshop component to the course. There is studio space although this is timetabled. However students are encouraged to pursue their own art work and to find out about the media specific workshop facilities open to them in Edinburgh (e.g. sculpture, photography and printmaking). Students are also strongly encouraged to visit the many excellent museums and galleries in Edinburgh.

20. Do most students find employment after they graduate? Employment opportunities vary, with some regions of the UK offering more employment possibilities for qualified Art Psychotherapists than others. Some Art Psychotherapists will find employment in settings where their Art Psychotherapy knowledge combines with the requirements of the job. An example would be e.g. a job as a project worker or an art worker with special needs, on a Community Mental Health Team, School and Hospice etc. Art Psychotherapists find full, part-time and sessional work within statutory and voluntary sectors. Practice Placement experience whilst a student contributes to an understanding of employment possibilities and enables students to consider realistically how to approach employment upon graduation. The British Association of Art Therapists (BAAT), the professional organisation which newly qualified Art Therapists may join, publishes, a journal (international journal of Art Psychotherapy), a Newsletter, and circulates online information about Art Therapy posts in the UK. In addition BAAT Regional Groups enable Art Therapists to keep in touch with one another and focus upon local and professional issues and developments. Within BAAT there are a number of special interest groups, such as Art Therapy and Education, Art Therapy and Autistic Spectrum Disorders, Art Therapy and Palliative Care, Art Therapy and Learning Disability, Art Therapy in Forensic Settings and Art Therapy Race and Culture, creating networks which in turn promote employment.

21. What support is offered to International students? International Studies Department at QMU offers a range of preparatory English courses for students whose first language is not English. Interested students are advised to contact Recruitment & International Liaison Office: telephone:+ 44 ( 0) 131 474 0000 email: . For information about student accommodation contact the Accommodation Office on tel: +44 (0) 131 474 0000. We recommend pre-sessional courses to all applicants whose first language is not English.

4-week course :   Monday 10th August – Friday 4th September 2015

12-week course : Monday 15th June – Friday 4th September 2015

22. How many students are accepted on the course each year? Between 25 and 30 full-time places are offered each year or the equivalent in terms of full and part-time places. The part time route will recommence in 2016 and then with 6-8 places bi-annually.

23. When should I apply? Applicants are advised to apply before January and until May. Late applicants will be considered. The majority of interviews take place in the second semester between January and May. For more information, contact: QMU Admissions Office on tel: +44 (0)131 474 0000. Please enclose your 2 references together with your application form.

24. What are the research interests of the staff? Please see individual staff member's details on the QMU Occupational and Art Therapies Division webpage.

25. Could I have a reading list? A basic reading list follows: Axline, Virginia (1971) Dibs in Search of Self. Ballantine Books Campbell, Jean (1991) Art therapy, race and culture. Jessica Kingsley Case, C and Dalley, T (1990) Working with Children in Art Therapy. Routledge Dalley, T (1984) Art as Therapy. London. Tavistock Publications Dalley, T. (1987) Images of Art Therapy London. Tavistock Publications Dissanayake, Ellen What is Art for? (1988) University of Washington Press Jennings, Sue (1993) Art therapy and dramatherapy: Masks of the soul. Jessica Kingsley Jung, C G (1963) Memories, Dreams, Reflections Laing, Joyce and Peter Byrne (1996) Starting from Scratch 1996. Edinburgh University Settlement Maclagen David - Psychological Aesthetics (2001) Jessica Kingsley Malchiodi, Cathy (1998) Medical art therapy with children. Jessica Kingsley Malchiodi, Cathy (1999) Medical art therapy adults. Jessica Kingsley McNiff, Shaun 1998 Art Medicine Miller, Marion (1981) On Not Being Able to Paint. Heinmann. London Rees, Mair (1998) Drawing in difference: art therapy with people who have learning difficulties. Routledge Riley, Shirley (1999) Art therapy with adolescents. Jessica Kingsley Robbins, Arthur The Artist as Therapist (2000) Jessica Kingsley Publications Rubin, Judith Aron (1999) Art therapy: an introduction. Brunner/Mazel Sandle, Doug (1998) Development and diversity: new applications in art therapy. Free Association Books Schaverien, Joy (1999) The revealing image : analytical art psychotherapy in theory and practice. Jessica Kingsley Skaife, Sally and Huet, Val (1998) Art psychotherapy in groups : Between pictures and words. Routledge Storr, Anthony (1973) Jung. Fontana Thomson, Martina (1989) On Art and Therapy. An exploration Waller, D (1991) On Becoming a Profession. Routledge Winnicot, Donald (1991) Playing and Reality. Penguin Basic Books CREATIVE ARTS THERAPY JOURNALS American Journal of art therapy Context: the magazine for family therapy and systemic practice Dramatherapy: the journal of the British Association of Dramatherapists Groupwork: an interdisciplinary journal for working with groups Inscape: Journal of the British Association of Art Therapists Journal of child psychotherapy Journal of family Therapy New analysis: Journal of Psychoanalytic social studies Raw vision: outside art