Trauma Art Narrative Therapy with Children in Residential Treatment: a Pilot Study

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Psychology (PsyD)

Year of Completion


First Advisor

Thomas Demaria


There is a need to establish effective treatments that are based on research to alleviate symptoms of PTSD in children and adolescents. Limited empirical research exists on the topic of utilizing non-interpretive art therapy treatments, particularly the Trauma Art Narrative Therapy (TANT) protocol, to decrease symptoms of PTSD in children. This study examined the effectiveness of TANT for children in residential treatment by comparing pre- and post-treatment Trauma Symptom Checklist for Children (TSCC) scores. Additionally, to further establish whether the TANT protocol is an effective treatment, TSCC scores of children who received the TF-CBT protocol (n=5) were compared to children who received the TANT protocol (n=32). Results indicated that symptoms of depression and anger both significantly decreased from pre- to post-treatment in the TANT group. Due to the comorbidity between depression and PTSD and the relationship between anger and hyperarousal, it is understandable why these two subscales had significant outcomes. These findings support Trauma Processing Theory, which is the basis of TANT. The proposed hypothesis regarding the comparison of TANT and TF-CBT was not supported. Implications of these findings are presented.