When does the program start?
The master’s program in expressive therapies only has one start term per year, which is summer. On-campus students have an online orientation course in July, with on-campus courses beginning in the fall. Low-residency students have an online orientation course in July followed by a 2-3 week on-campus residency, with online courses in the fall and spring.
Do you offer the program online?
Through the low-residency format, students attend an in-person summer residency each July on Lesley’s campus. In the fall and spring semesters, students continue their studies online with a mix of asynchronous and synchronous coursework. Field work is completed in their home community. The completion time for this model is 3 years (20 credits each year with 2-3 courses per semester). Internships take place in years 2 and 3, alongside coursework in the fall and spring semesters.
Are the online courses in the low-residency program asynchronous or synchronous?
Students in the low-residency program attend the on-campus residency each July. During the fall and spring semesters, students take their coursework online with a mix of asynchronous and synchronous learning.
How do students in the low-residency programs stay connected as a learning community?
During the 3-year program, students in the low-residency model come to campus each July for their residency. During this time, students and faculty make very strong connections that are fostered throughout the program. When learning online, students participate in both synchronous and asynchronous learning. Lesley’s Online Learning Platform also offers interactive tools that can be used for courses beyond just posting comments to a discussion board. You can use a collaborative tool to work on group projects, work with your class to find a time that works for everyone to video in to connect, instant message with faculty or peers, upload PowerPoint presentations and record yourself over the presentation as if you were giving it in person and faculty and peers can provide feedback. Faculty make the online work as engaging as possible and the in-person residency period is very hands-on and experiential! Students stay connected through email, phone, Zoom and social media as well!
How is the on-campus model formatted?
Our on-campus model has courses during the daytime, on weekdays, or in an intensive format as well (either a weekend-intensive course or a five-day intensive course). The completion time for this model is 3 years (20 credits each year with 3 courses per semester). Internships take place in years 2 and 3 alongside coursework in the fall and spring semesters.
Can I continue to work full-time while in the program?
We don’t typically recommend that students work full time while in the program. Our on-campus courses take place during the daytime as well as nights and weekends, and daytime courses cannot be avoided. Please keep in mind that there are synchronous components to the low-residency model’s online coursework. Your place of employment would need to be flexible should you be required to attend your synchronous online course during regular business hours.
In the low residency model, it may be possible to work full-time for the first year of the program, as long as you can take the required weeks off in July for residency. If you can find an internship site in your second year of the program that has nights and weekend hours, you may be able to complete the 15 hours/week that are needed and still work full time and come for residency in July. The third year of the program, however, requires about 25 hours/week at your site, making it impossible to work full time, complete your coursework, and fulfill those hours.
How do I submit my portfolio?
Portfolios should be submitted on Slideroom. Learn more about the portfolio requirements and how to set up an account with Slideroom.
If my GPA does not meet the preferred requirement of a 3.0 or higher, can I still apply?
The program prefers that applicants have a GPA of a 3.0 or higher, however applicants with a lower GPA may still be reviewed. If you have a lower GPA and are concerned about it impacting your admissions decision, we recommend addressing this in your Written Personal Statement. You can address anything that may have affected your grades, or you can address why you believe you are prepared at this time to be successful in a graduate program.
How do I select a writing sample?
The Academic Writing Sample can be a previously written research-based paper from a college-level course. It should show your ability to think critically, synthesize information, and write at the academic level. Your submission can be on any topic and must be between 3 and 5 pages in length (double-spaced). If you have written a longer paper, you can submit an excerpt of 3-5 chronological pages (it is okay if the submission is out of context). If you do not have a paper from your previous studies, or if you graduated from college several years ago, you may choose to write a 3-5 page paper on a topic of interest. Please choose your best writing to submit for review.
If admitted into the program, can I defer?
If unexpected circumstances are preventing you from starting your Lesley graduate program in the term you were admitted, you may request to defer your enrollment for up to 1 year. You will be required to submit an enrollment deposit and deferral request form to hold your spot. Learn more about the deferral process.
I am interested in more than one art modality. Can I apply to multiple programs?
Although you can’t apply to more than one specialization, a unique aspect of our program is that you still get exposure to each of the art forms. Meaning, if you chose to pursue Drama Therapy, some of your core courses would still train you in the other expressive therapies in a therapeutic setting. This helps you down the road when you may be working with a client who may not respond to one specific modality. Theory and practice are interwoven into this program’s curriculum.
Which prerequisites do I need in order to apply?
Art Therapy Program
Completed coursework in:
Psychology (12 credits, including abnormal psychology and developmental
psychology, with grades of B or better). Studio Art (18 credits, with grades of B or better). Not all coursework must be complete before you apply. Contact Graduate Admissions for details.
Dance Therapy Program
6 credits of completed coursework in psychology with grades of B or better and Anatomy and Kinesiology with a grade of B or higher. Not all coursework must be complete before you apply. Contact Graduate Admissions for details.
Drama Therapy Program
6 credits of completed coursework in psychology with grades of B or better. Not all coursework must be complete before you apply. Contact Graduate Admissions for details.
Expressive Arts Therapy Program
3 credits of completed coursework in abnormal psychology and 3 credits of completed coursework in developmental psychology with grades of B or better. Not all coursework must be complete before you apply. Contact Graduate Admissions for details.
Music Therapy Program
6 credits of completed coursework in psychology with grades of B or better.
Principles and Practices of Music Therapy (3 credits) or a music therapy course that includes the history and survey of the profession, its theoretical approaches, and its application to various populations.
Not all coursework must be complete before you apply. Contact Graduate Admissions for details.
How can I gain experience in the field of human services and learn more about Expressive Therapies?
Prospective students can gain human service experience by pursuing community resources through volunteering and observation. This will greatly strengthen an application when ultimately applying to the program. Below are some resources for prospective students to explore:
Students may also learn about what types of work Expressive Therapists are doing in the field by exploring the resources below:
Art Therapy: American Art Therapy Association (AATA)
Expressive Arts Therapy: International Expressive Arts Therapy (IEATA)
Dance/Movement Therapy: American Dance Therapy Association (ADTA)
Drama Therapy: North American Drama Therapy Association (NADTA)
Music Therapy: American Music Therapy: American Music Therapy Association (AMTA)
Voices – An online journal that looks at social justice through the use of Music Therapy.
Jessica Kingsley Publishers – A publishing company that houses reading material for all creative arts therapies.
Barcelona Publishers – A publishing company “dedicated entirely to the field of music therapy” with the goal of expanding and moving the field forward.
How can I schedule an appointment to learn more?
Please click on the links below to schedule a time to meet with admissions or visit our campus.
Schedule an Appointment with a Graduate Admissions Counselor
Attend an Information Session or Campus Tour