Group Art Therapy to Reduce Stress in Aging and Elderly People with Intellectual Disabilities
Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy
Degree Granting Institution
Notre Dame de Namur University
Lisa Bjerknes, MD, MBA
Laury Rappaport, PhD, ATR-BC
Angel Duncan, MFT, ATR
This mixed methods study researched the application of group art therapy with elderly people with intellectual disabilities to reduce stress. The researcher hypothesized that implementing art therapy groups with aging and elderly people with intellectual disabilities would reduce stress and increase effective coping skills. The research question posed was: how would implementing art therapy groups positively impact group participants? There were 13 participants in the study. The Draw-a-Person-in-the-Rain art assessment and the Lifestress Inventory were used to obtain pre and post measures. The collected quantitative data was unreliable. The qualitative and art-based findings included major themes, and revealed that the art therapy treatment was influential in reducing stress and increasing positive coping skills. As an outcome of this study, the following themes contribute to the knowledge about this population: establishing identity, perseveration, hesitancy, mastery and ownership, and relaxation.
Baughman, Mandi, "Group Art Therapy to Reduce Stress in Aging and Elderly People with Intellectual Disabilities" (2011). Art Therapy | Master's Theses in Print. 198.