Art Psychotherapy at Teesside

In September 2023 the School of Arts & Creative Industries launched a new Arts Therapist apprenticeship. Here we catch up with Course Leader Dr. Kelly Jayne to find out a little bit more about the course.

Could you give a brief overview of the course?

I’m very proud to be the Course Leader for such a rich and innovative course. Our course, carefully designed within the School of Arts & Creative Industries, is currently the only MSc Art Psychotherapy Degree Apprenticeship in England and has the potential to offer a dynamic, exciting, and personally rewarding career. The course offers a broad understanding of Art Psychotherapy, covering a range of clinical, theoretical, and practical components. Furthermore, pioneering Art Psychotherapists such as Prof Val Huet, Dr Jed Jerwood, Dr Simon Hackett and Dr Chris Wood (to name a few) contribute towards to the delivery of the course, adding value and expertise to the apprentice’ experience  The course is Health and Care Professions Council approved and on completion, apprentices can register with the HCPC as a qualified and professional Art Psychotherapist, ready for practice.

Art Psychotherapy materials

Tell me about the benefits to learners (apprentices)

Our course is a blended low residency model of delivery.  This means learners can attend lectures and seminars online in the comfort of their own home or employment setting. This also enables inclusivity as  people from anywhere in England can access our training.  Learners also attend three 5-days, in-person, intensive experiential weeks over the duration of the course where they can emerge themselves in the learning without distraction, meet their other cohort group members, meet Art Psychotherapist Guest Lecturers and access Teesside University facilities and MIMA, our amazing art gallery which is part of the School of Arts and Creative Industries.  As well as completing with an apprenticeship, they exit the course with an MSc Art Psychotherapy degree, and they will also have the additional opportunity to engage in the delivery of arts research projects within our upcoming Arts Research Clinic (ARCH) and even co-write articles for publication!

Learners engaging with course activities

I’m interested to know, what is the impact of an Art Psychotherapist?

An Art Psychotherapist’s task is to support processes of emotional integration by providing a safe, reliable, and therapeutic environment within which the patient or client can create and use art-making to express thoughts and feelings, leading to personal insight and positive change. Sometimes talking therapies are not appropriate for a patient or client due to a variety of reasons. An Art Psychotherapist offers an alternative intervention where words are not the only form of communication or expression. The creative process offers a non-intimidating way for a patient or client to start exploring their thoughts and feelings, building confidence and choice in how, what, and when they share. The image can hold the material until a patient is ready to discuss is.

Dr Kelly Jayne introducing Guest Speakers during an intensive learning week

So, what advice would you give to someone wanting to study the course?

The requirement is that if you wish to engage in our apprenticeship programme, you must be in full-time (30 hours min.) employment for the full duration of the training and have your employer’s full support. You must have either a BA (Hons) degree in an art subject, or, be able to demonstrate a long standing relationship with art making. You must have an understanding or eager interest in how art can support healing or expression and be passionate about the profession.

Art Psychotherapy intensive experiential week

Finally, what advice would you give to an employer looking to send their employee on this course?

If you are an employer considering this option to either upskill a current employee, or to create a new post, you won’t be disappointed! Not only will your employee bring new, rich learning each week that will enhance their role, but their training will also benefit your service users. You will be able to offer your service users an intervention that is highly in demand, is evidence-based and it is extremely good value for money. Teesside University is proud of how we support employers each step of the onboarding process and throughout the programme. I would advise potential employers to attend one of our webinars where we provide lots of information about the course and there is an opportunity to ask questions. You can also contact us here with any questions

Learners engaging in art psychotherapy activities

Find out more about our

Arts Therapist apprenticeship here


Other apprenticeships available to study at

Teesside University can be found here

The future of curating at MIMA

The School of Arts & Creative Industries at Teesside University, welcomed its first cohort of  Curator apprentices recently and is looking forward to growing numbers on the unique programme. Professor Sarah Perks and Dr Paul Stewart comment on the success and popularity of this groundbreaking new apprenticeship

Teesside University are the first university to launch the Curator apprenticeship, leading the way with a highly experienced professional team and building on the reknowned work of MIMA (Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art), an international art gallery and museum that sits at the artistic heart of the School of Arts & Creative Industries on the Teesside University campus.

Apprentice Curators at MIMA

The Curator apprenticeship is embedded into the MIMA programme, allowing apprentices access to all resources and also for students following the non-apprenticeship route  to contribute to a range of events, projects and exhibitions as part of their learning. It benefits from a knowledgeable and vastly experienced team leading sessions, including our Professor of Curating, Sarah Perks, Dr Paul Stewart, Elinor Morgan (Artistic Director at MIMA), Helen Welford and Dr Pippa Oldfield – all based within the school. Tutors for the first module include Daniella Rose-King (Tate) and independent curator, George Vasey, with guest speakers including Emily Pringle (Tate) and Sophia Hao (Cooper Gallery, Dundee).

Apprentices in the MIMA Gallery

Professor Perks said

“Starting the first Level 7 Apprenticeship in Curating has been such a fabulous journey for myself and my colleagues in the school and MIMA, we have been so excited during the design and implementation of the course and to be able welcome the first cohort to Middlesbrough has made it very real.

We have an even larger cohort for the next intake and a whole new module focused on access, inclusion and working with collections (of all types), with a large group joining us from the National Trust, as far away as Penzance!

We’re getting more and more enquiries from outside of museums and galleries which is really exciting. It’s also helping our research into curatorial strategies too, where we are very focused on activity with local communities and nature recovery.”

Taking part in an intensive study week

The Curator apprenticeship benefits from an intesive block delivery model, with apprentices required to attend 3 one-week blocks of learning across each year of the 2-year course. On completion of the apprenticeship the award of MA Curating is received alongside the Curator Apprenticeship.

Dr Paul Stewart leading a taught session

Dr Stewart comments

“It was a fantastic experience to work with such a diverse and passionate group across multiple areas of curating, from galleries to archives across collections and public programming. The course has really developed a fantastic peer group and solidifed the need to further establish new ways of learning and teaching across the arts and curatorial sectors that support new and multiple entry points.

The apprenticeship builds on the work MIMA already does, connecting art, people and ideas to empower creative lives and positively contribute to the community.”

Apprentices in the MIMA Gallery

Further information about the Curator Apprenticeship

in the School of Arts & Creative Industries at

Teesside University can be found here