Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Art in Dance/Movement Therapy and Counseling (MA)


Creative Arts Therapies

First Advisor

Imus, Susan

Second Advisor

Downey, Laura

Third Advisor

Allen, Laura


theories, models, heuristic inquiry, therapist, dance/movement therapy


There are theories, models, and theses that explain what generally happens as people move through the identified phases of counselor and professional identity development. However, there is little literature that illustrates how this growth actually happens for clinicians. The purpose of this heuristic self-study was to identify and gain a deeper understanding of the narrative of how my clinical experiences have influenced my professional identity as a dance/movement therapist. This study utilized the six phases of heuristic inquiry as a structure to guide this discovery. My personal recollections of three identified cases were used as data, which was then analyzed through the use of Riessman’s Narrative Analysis. The analysis process included responding to structured journal questions and using movement to clarify responses. Unexpected factors that were influential in the development process were acknowledged. The final thesis product was my story, which consists of three mini-narratives that illustrate how my clinical experiences shaped my development as a dance/movement therapist. 115 pages.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.