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Creative Arts and Mental Health PGDip

Different course options

Full time | Mile End | 9 months | 16-SEP-24

Study mode

Full time


9 months

Start date


Key information

Qualification type

Postgraduate Diploma

Subject areas

People With Mental Health Problems: Social Work Art Therapy Art

Course type


Course Summary

The programme offers an interdisciplinary approach to knowledge and research, with a particular emphasis on theatre and performance in the creative arts. This innovative and unique postgraduate diploma is for you if you are an education professional, artist, scholar or mental health practitioner. It's jointly run by the Centre for Psychiatry and the Department of Drama.

  • Learn about the application of the creative arts to research, practice, education, advocacy and activism in the field of mental health
  • Study the ways in which mental health experiences are represented in the arts and in popular culture
  • Consider how arts practice can critique and expand both clinical and popular understanding of mental health and the mental health system
  • Learn how mental health professionals, arts practitioners and others interested in mental health and wellbeing work together in both clinical and non-clinical environments
  • Develop your own area of expertise in the field of the arts and mental health through options of placements and arts practice.


  • Specialist performance facilities at our Mile End campus, including three rehearsal rooms, the Pinter studio theatre, and the Film and Drama Studio (FADS)
  • The new Graduate Centre and award-winning Lock-Keepers’ Cottage
  • Queen Mary’s comprehensive libraries, including the Postgraduate Reading Room
  • Access to the University of London Library at Senate House

Career paths

Some students already hold qualifications in art or drama therapy, are practicing artists, or may work elsewhere in mental health. For them, the course offers an opportunity to expand their knowledge base, develop their practice, meet a variety of other professionals working in related fields and further their careers.

Other students have used the PgDip as a stepping stone to entering a career in education, mental health practice or to pursue postgraduate research/doctoral training in either art or mental health.


This module explores the performance of mental health and mental illness as they have been defined across history, and in the contemporary moment. In particular the module asks how the social construction of mental health is reflected in and produced by performance. While the module focuses on the types of subjectivity and selfhood that have emerged in the history of theatre and performance, students are also encouraged to explore ways other creative practices engage these topics. Special attention is given to representations of 'madness' and `mental illness' produced in historical performance, as well as to how these representations have since been reinterpreted and adapted to reflect current constructions and concerns. In addition we will consider a variety of contemporary and collaborative performance practices that interrogate attitudes relating to normative concepts of mental health, and even try to intervene into policy and care. Students will be introduced to broad debates on mental health from within the Humanities and informed by the approaches of disability studies.

Tuition fees

UK fees
Course fees for UK students

For this course (per year)


International fees
Course fees for EU and international students

For this course (per year)


Entry requirements

2:1 or above at undergraduate level in a relevant subject.

University information

Queen Mary University of London (QMUL) is an internationally regarded public research institution based in London. It has a long history, dating back over 230 years, and is a member of the prestigious Russell Group of universities. Queen Mary has five campuses in the city of London and an international network of satellite campuses in China, Malta and Paris. There is a population of around 16,000 students at the London campuses and more than...more