Art is a method of communication which can support or substitute for oral and written communication. It is often said that a picture paints a thousand words. Within the context of art therapy, art making can be used as a tool for choice and decision making.
Arts based assessment may incorporate assessing developmental levels and visual information processing. The capacity for expression and metaphor within art can reveal that which is difficult to conceptualise and articulate.
The author has utilised arts based assessments as a tool to involve individuals who are non-verbal or who prefer visual communication styles in the process of making choices and decisions. This presentation will explore a number of cases where participants have been supported to explore emotional experiences and practical tasks in the NDIS planning and review process. Within this context arts based assessments are not prescriptive, they are person centred; they embody and promote the values of choice and control.
In supporting choice and decision making it is important to involve the participant in a way that is meaningful and accessible to them. Registered art therapists can assist in the appropriate use of arts based assessments to support this.

Emily Walters
Able Australia

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