Thesis Title

The Relationship Between Art in Schoool Curriculum and Adolescent Depressive Tendencies

Graduation Date

Summer 2002

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

Roberta Hauser, ATR-BC


This paper presents a study of art and its relationship to depressive tendencies in an adolescent population in a public high school (specifically ninth, tenth, eleventh and twelfth graders). From the sample tested, profiles were made to compare: participants that take art and like art, those that take art and do not like art, those that do not take art and like art, and finally those that do not take art and do not like art. Each participant was rated on a scale developed by the researcher that addresses depressive tendencies and attitudes about art. The scale ranges from a minimum score of 16 to a maximum of 80. This scale was derived from the survey and the manner in which the participant responded to questions on a 1-5 scale. All participants were told that the study involved inquiring about current art in their curriculum. The findings indicate the participants that currently take art and like art have less depressive tendencies than the participants that do not take art and do not like art, as they scored highest towards depressive tendencies. The mean score of these two profiles was significantly different.