Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts


Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA), School of Visual Arts


Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts

First Advisor

Dr. Michael Campanelli


It is well recognised that children with cancer have special needs. Art therapy has been shown to be effective in meeting some of these needs. An exploratory study was conducted to assess the feasibility of art therapy to address the psychosocial needs of paediatric cancer patients in a medical setting where art therapy has not been practised before. A qualitative research design was used to investigate the research questions, using interviews as the main instrument. Subjects were recruited from the oncology team of a metropolitan children's hospital. The sample of thirteen informants consisted of representatives from the medical, nursing and allied health professions (occupational therapy, social work, teaching, chaplaincy, dietetics and physiotherapy). Interviews were conducted with the aim of obtaining background information on the area under investigation (the illness, the patient, staff roles and psychosocial services), as well as informants' perceptions about working in the oncology setting, the psychosocial needs of paediatric cancer patients, the extent to which these needs are met, the role of art and the potential role of art therapy.

Included in

Art Therapy Commons