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They found that only six studies included a control group (only one of which included randomization) in this field.Half reported a significant reduction in trauma symptoms and another study found a decrease in the levels of depression in clients treated with art therapy.
Two decades later, this research field has extended its scope and is flourishing.
Several current reviews of research work have described the broad range of methods implemented today, which includes qualitative and quantitative studies; other reviews have focused on art therapy with specific populations, or by age group.
The authors focused on describing different ways to use art therapy in this context and argued that there has been a gradual emergence of a vast body of knowledge that reinforces the benefits of art therapy for people working in stressful work environments.
In the past three years, a number of literature reviews of controlled quantitative studies have dealt more specifically with the issue of the effectiveness of art therapy in treating specific populations. (2015) overviewed quantitative studies in art therapy with adult trauma victims.
This paper presents the latest 27 studies in the field that examine the effectiveness of art therapy with adult clients and divides them into seven clinical categories: cancer patients, clients coping with a variety of medical conditions, mental health clients, clients coping with trauma, prison inmates, the elderly, and clients who have not been diagnosed with specific issues but face ongoing daily challenges.
It underscores the potential effects of art therapy on these seven clinical populations, and recommends the necessary expansions for future research in the field, to enable art therapy research to take further strides forward.
The aim of this systematic literature review is to contribute to the ongoing discussion in the field by exploring the latest studies dealing with the effectiveness of art therapy with a broad scope of adult clients.
We conducted a comprehensive search in four databases and review of every quantitative article that has addressed outcome measures in the art therapy field from 2000 to 2017.
Level 1 refers to randomized controlled trials (RCT's), level 2 refers to nonrandomized two-group studies, and level 3 refers to nonrandomized one-group studies.
The second challenge has to do with the definition art therapy.