Requirements for the EXA Program

Program Requirements

A year of experience is required working in an agency practicing expressive arts therapy with clients under the supervision of a CIIS faculty member who is both a licensed mental health professional and an expressive or creative arts therapist.

California MFT Requirements
Spousal Abuse Assessment and Reporting should be taken before completing the MA; Child Abuse Assessment and Reporting, Human Sexuality, and Aging and Long-Term Care can be taken after completion of the MA program, but must be taken prior to application for MFT licensure. These are non- credit workshop/classes, most of which are available through CIIS Public Programs & Performances.

Personal Therapy
All students are required to complete forty-five hours of individual psychotherapy with a mental health professional who is also an expressive or creative arts therapist. The program maintains a therapist referral book.

EXA Workshops
Each student must take two zero-credit weekend workshops in order to obtain the degree. The EXA program offers these in partnership with CIIS Public Programs & Performances. One of the workshops will be taken in the first year; the second workshop may be taken in the second or third year.

Ongoing Arts Practice
By the summer of their first year, students are required to be engaged in an ongoing practice in an arts modality of their choice, which continues until the end of their program. To encourage depth of involvement, students are required to complete at least one year of this time in one modality. This arts practice may involve taking instruction in a class or with a mentor, and involves acquiring the appropriate materials and having access to sufficient space to work with them.

Integrative Project
Toward the end of their third year, all students prepare and present a summary of their own personal journey through expressive arts therapy and the program, a final art project, a case study summarizing their expressive arts therapy work with a client, and an academic paper presenting their own approach to expressive arts therapy.