Welcome to the Trauma-Informed Practices and Expressive Arts Therapy Institute!

Cathy Malchiodi, PhD | Trauma and Expressive Arts Therapy: Brain, Body, and Imagination in the Healing Process
Trauma and Expressive Arts Therapy: Brain, Body, and Imagination in the Healing Process


Trauma-Informed Expressive Arts Therapy® and Trauma-Informed Art Therapy® are approaches developed by Dr. Cathy Malchiodi that integrate trauma-informed practices, "brain-wise" arts-based interventions and embodied awareness concepts to support trauma reparation and recovery. We believe expressive arts therapy [the integrative use of art, music/sound, dance/movement, enactment/improvisation, storytelling/narrative, play, and imagination] is a key psychotherapeutic strategy when addressing traumatic stress. The Institute is dedicated to professional education and distance learning on these practices that focus on the expressive arts as a form of body-based psychotherapy.


For more information on Dr. Malchiodi, you can also visit her website at www.cathymalchiodi.com.

Cathy Malchiodi PhD, LPCC, LPAT, ATR-BC, REAT, Founder and Director
Cathy Malchiodi PhD, LPCC, LPAT, ATR-BC, REAT, Founder and Director

Learn! Trainings, Workshops and Online Courses on Expressive Arts Therapy and Traumatic Stress

The Trauma-Informed Practices and Expressive Arts Therapy Institute is dedicated to providing professional education that promotes greater understanding of expressive arts therapy and trauma-informed practices. The Institute offers live trainings (webinar and real time), courses and workshops and distance learning courses for mental health professionals and master's and doctoral students; these learning opportunities are also open to arts-based facilitators and practitioners. Courses emphasize approaches that are based on best practices, integrative methods and current research in expressive arts and trauma-informed care, and complement mind-body, somatic, sensory integration and neurobiology-informed methods of trauma intervention. We believe that expressive arts therapy [the integrated use of multiple arts forms] in particular is essential to many individuals' trauma reparation and is an important part of that process. The Institute supports a vision for advanced understanding and education in these methods and promotes the value of these approaches in trauma-informed care, psychotherapy and wellness.


To view current course catalogue, please click here.


To go to the Learning Center Home Page, please click here.



Cathy Malchiodi PhD Artwork Trauma and Expressive Arts Therapy, Expressive Arts Therapy as a Bottom-Up Approache

Develop your skills in sensory-based, embodied and brain-wise approaches using Expressive Arts in psychotherapy, counseling, coaching and education. If you are a mental health professional, Expressive Arts Therapist--Trauma Informed [EXAT] is a continuing education certificate program designed to help you acquire the competencies necessary to apply Trauma-Informed Expressive Arts Therapy within the context of psychotherapy and counseling. We also provide a training program for those who want to apply expressive arts in a variety of settings and non-psychotherapy settings. 


Expressive Arts Coaching/Educator--Trauma-Informed [EXA-CE] is also a continuing education certificate program is for those of you with degrees in the arts, humanities or education, health or other types of coaches, nurses and nurse practitioners, occupational therapists, physical therapists, emergency medical workers, acupuncturists, bodyworkers, yoga practitioners, first responders, crisis center staff, educators, mediators, clergy, and chaplains.

About Our Live and Online Courses

The courses we offer are for continuing education, professional development and enrichment purposes only in creative, action-oriented and sensory-based trauma-informed practice, counseling, and psychotherapeutic approaches with children, adolescents, adults, families and groups with an emphasis on Expressive Arts Therapy, the integrated application of the arts for health and well-being.


If you are interested in obtaining a credential in art therapy, music therapy, dance/movement therapy, drama therapy or play therapy, please consult with the various credentials boards or organizations in your country, state, province or locality to determine what specific education is required to become a competent practitioner by law in your chosen field of practice. Depending on your location/country, these credentials require a master's degree from a university or other form of higher education. Additionally, some states regulate the scope and practice of art therapy, music therapy, dance/movement therapy and other creative arts therapies in the US; please review your state's regulations for more information about scope of practice and required credentials to practice in these fields.

To Read More About Expressive Arts Therapy and Trauma

Here Are a Few Books to Get You Started

Trauma and Expressive Arts: Brain, Body, and Imagination in the Healing Process: "From pioneering therapist Cathy A. Malchiodi, this book synthesizes the breadth of research on trauma and the brain and presents an innovative framework for treating trauma through the expressive arts. The volume describes powerful ways to tap into deeply felt bodily and sensory experiences as a foundation for safely exploring emotions, memories, and personal narratives. Rich clinical examples illustrate the use of movement, sound, play, art, and drama with children and adults. Malchiodi's approach not only enables survivors to express experiences that defy verbalization, but also helps them to transform and integrate the trauma, regain a sense of aliveness, and imagine a new future. Reproducible templates are included; purchasers get access to a Web page where they can download and print these materials in a convenient 8½" x 11" size."


Audience: Trauma specialists (psychologists, psychiatrists, social workers, counselors, and psychiatric nurses); trauma researchers; expressive arts therapists; creative arts therapists (art, music, movement, play, and drama).


Creative Interventions with Traumatized Children, 2nd Edition, Cathy Malchiodi, PhD, Editor


Rich with case material and artwork samples, this volume demonstrates a range of creative approaches for facilitating children's emotional reparation and recovery from trauma. Contributors include experienced practitioners of play, art, music, movement and drama therapies, bibliotherapy, and integrative therapies, who describe step-by-step strategies for working with individual children, families, and groups. The case-based format makes the book especially practical and user-friendly. Specific types of stressful experiences addressed include parental loss, child abuse, accidents, family violence, bullying, and mass trauma. Broader approaches to promoting resilience and preventing posttraumatic problems in children at risk are also presented. Available from Guilford Publications, Amazon and more.

Creative Arts and Play Therapy for Attachment Problems (Guilford Press, 2013). This book vividly shows how creative arts and play therapy can help children recover from experiences of disrupted or insecure attachment. Leading practitioners explore the impact of early relationship difficulties on children’s emotions and behavior. Rich case material brings to life a range of therapeutic approaches that utilize art, music, movement, drama, creative writing, and play. The volume covers ways to address attachment issues with individuals of different ages, as well as their caregivers. Chapters clearly explain the various techniques and present applications for specific populations, including complex trauma survivors. To read more and download a sample, please follow this link.


When children are ‘captured’ by living in a traumatic environment, it takes the efforts of a brave and knowledgeable therapist to help release them from their psychological bondage. This book brings that insight to fruition in an approach to attachment-focused play and arts therapy that is grounded in knowledge of developmental neuroscience, and it does so with insight and wisdom. It should be required reading for any professional who steps into the world of children exposed to the dark side of human experience.” -James Garbarino, PhD, Maude C. Clarke Chair in Humanistic Psychology, Loyola University Chicago

Enjoy this Photo Gallery of Past Expressive Arts Therapy Trainings from Around the World!

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