April 18, 2019  | Susan Boxer Kappel, MA, ATR-BC, LCAT, CGP, Conference Chair


Just in case you haven’t heard…Early Bird registration is now open for the American Art Therapy Association’s 50th  Annual Conference to be held October 30 to November 3, 2019 in Kansas City, Missouri!  Registering early ensures you receive the lowest conference rates, and the best selection of the very popular experiential learning sessions (Workshops and Advanced Practice Courses).  So, visit the conference website to get all of the details and link to online registration!

The conference program is infused with a rich learning environment, including some brand new approaches.  With more than 220 educational sessions attendees will find lots of “take home” ideas, knowledge and inspiration to apply to their current positions, practices and professional development.  The conference also provides access to up to 32 hours of continuing education (when you take both the All-Day and Half-Day Advanced Practice Courses).  Both didactic and experiential learning can be found in the program.  So whether you learn directly from your peers while you network, attend a didactic session to hear the latest research and techniques in art therapy, or “learn by doing” with art supplies and directives — this conference provides something for everyone!  You can explore the program via the “searchable Online Schedule” or download the detailed online brochure.

Experiential sessions are among our most popular, and typically fill up by the time that early bird registration comes to a close!  These sessions require participants to register and purchase a ticket in order to attend.  The experientials include workshops which are 1.5 hours in length, and held at various times on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, and the Advanced Practices Courses, which are held on Wednesday from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm, and on Sunday from 8:00 am to 11:00 am.  The experiential sessions engage participants in the learning process, including art directives through which they gain hands-on experience and mastery over the material covered.  Download a convenient list of the experiential sessions here.  This learn-by-doing method is a unique opportunity.  So if you want to participate in workshops or Advanced Practice Courses, please register early so that you are not disappointed!



The more traditional and didactic learning can be found in the Papers, Panels, Plenary Sessions, and Performance Art.  Unlike the experientials, these sessions do not require particpants to sign up in advance or purchase a ticket.  These sessions are included in the Conference Registration Package.  You simply go to the meeting room at the assigned time to participate.

Another special learning opportunity at this year’s conference is a Master Class.  This session will feature our keynote speaker, Dr. Essam Daod, and a panel of art therapists: Jennifer Beasley, DAT, MA, ATR-BC, Heidi Bardot, MA, ATR-BC, LCPAT, and Holly Feen-Calligan, PhD, ATR-BC.  Lynn Kapitan, PhD, ATR-BC, HLM will moderate this session which will feature work that has served the psycho-social needs of displaced people, to bridge global and local perspectives for attendees interested in developing resources in their own communities to address the tremendous need for accessible trauma-informed, culturally-relevant care for refugees and migrants.  The Master Class does require participants to register and purchase a ticket in order to attend.  If you want to attend be sure to add this session when you register.

A new format we are featuring this year is Pop-Up Learning.  This style of learning provides both pre-arranged topics, as well as the opportunity for attendees to post a “Pop-Up” session on the whiteboard to invite others to join.  The sessions are more spontaneous, less structured, and more participatory.  They also provide a fantastic opportunity for enhanced networking!

All educational sessions sponsored by the American Art Therapy Association (AATA) are accepted for continuing education by the Art Therapy Credentials Board (ATCB). AATA is also a National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC)-Approved Continuing Education Provider (ACEP Provider #5670), and may offer NBCC-approved clock hours for courses that meet NBCC requirements.  The ACEP solely is responsible for all aspects of the program.

AATA is also approved by the State of New York as a provider of continuing education for Licensed Creative Arts Therapists (LCATs) in New York (#CAT-0012).

Continuing Education-eligible sessions are identified in the Full Program Schedule with a number beginning with a two letter program track code followed by the session’s number.  Session numbers that begin with an “N” qualify for NBCC credit.  Session numbers that begin with an “NY” qualify of NY State LCAT credit [Example: N-TR6086 and NY-TR6086]. Sessions in the schedule without a session number do not provide continuing education including Focus Groups, Pop-Up Learning and Posters.  Continuing education is earned for contact clock hours at the conference. Sessions, such as Papers, which are 50 minutes are rounded up to 1 clock hour. Download the list of session formats and the number of clock hours provided.





AATA Members receive a discount on conference registration, so if your membership is not current or would like to become a member visit: https://arttherapy.org/membership-starts-here/ or call (888) 290-0878 or (703) 548-5860.



Visit the website to learn more today!


If you are interested in attending any Experiential Learning Sessions please register early, as these sessions do tend to fill up.