Division of Occupational Therapy and Arts Therapies

The Division of Occupational Therapy and Arts Therapies brings together the following distinct disciplines.

Occupational Therapy

Occupational therapy provides practical support to enable people to facilitate recovery and overcome any barriers that prevent them from doing the activities (occupations) that matter to them. This helps to increase people's independence and satisfaction in all aspects of life. "Occupation" refers to practical and purposeful activities that allow people to live independently and have a sense of identity. This could be essential day-to-day tasks such as self-care, work or leisure.

Occupational therapists work with adults and children of all ages with a wide range of conditions; most commonly those who have difficulties due to a mental health illness, physical or learning disabilities.

Art Psychotherapy

Art Therapy involves the use of art materials for self-expression and reflection in the presence of a State Registered Art Therapist. Previous experience and/or skill in art is not required as the overall aim of Art Therapy is to enable a client to effect change and growth on a personal level through the use of art materials in a safe and facilitating environment. Art Therapy offers an opportunity for expression and communication and can be particularly helpful to people who find it hard to express their thoughts and feelings verbally.

Music Therapy

Music therapy is based on the fact that everyone has the ability to respond to music. Music therapists use sounds and mostly improvised music, together with a client/s, to create a therapeutic relationship through non-verbal connection that enables communication and positive change in emotional wellbeing. Musical skill is not a prerequisite for clients; clients are encouraged to create their own musical language to express themselves. Music therapy can help people whose lives have been affected by injury, illness or disability. Music therapists work collaboratively with families and in multi-disciplinary teams to provide care for each individual.

See more about the undergraduate and postgraduate courses we offer at QMU.

Explore our virtual Art Psychotherapy 2020 exhibition

Inside Out: Reflections from Life Experience

Head of Division

Professor Brendan McCormack
Tel: 0131 474 0000

Inside Out: Reflections from Life Experience
  • Division News
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Innovative dementia research project launches this week in East Lothian

Bold Scotland, an innovative training programme being delivered in partnership by Queen Margaret Uni read more

25 November 2019

QMU to host 12th European Music Therapy Conference in 2022

Queen Margaret University (QMU) is delighted to announce that the British Association for Music Ther read more

17 May 2019

Art Psychotherapy Exhibition

Postgraduate Art Psychotherapy students from Queen Margaret University (QMU) will be showing off the read more

07 June 2018 More News

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Starting your studies at QMU? You are about to embark on a life-changing journey

Hello everyone! My name is Alexia Mitchell and I graduated from Queen Margaret University’s MSc Occu read more

25 May 2020

Sometimes messy problems need messy solutions

Living life can be messy. Balancing our different roles and responsibilities - some chosen, some inh read more

21 August 2018