Thesis Title

Using Art Therapy as a Tool for Rehabilitating Individuals With Prosopagnosia: Two Case Studies

Graduation Date

Fall 2004

Document Type

Master's Thesis

Document Form


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy

Degree Granting Institution

Notre Dame de Namur University

Program Name

Art Therapy


Lizbeth Martin, PhD

First Reader

Richard Carolan, EdD, ATR-BC

Second Reader

Carolee Stabno, PsyD, MFT


Prosopagnosia is a rare neuropathological disorder characterized by the inability to recognize familiar faces, also called faceblindness. While much research has been done on the neurological basis of prosopagnosia, there is little research on therapies to treat the disorder (Francis, Riddoch, & Humphreys, 2002). Studies indicate that drawing can reveal brain damage, and can also remediate brain dysfunction (Cheyne-King, 1990). This study involved two prosopagnosic individuals to test the hypothesis that drawing faces can improve face recognition performance. Results indicated an improvement in recognition of photographs, but results were not generalized to day to day experience.