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Home » Staff Directory » Dr. Nancy Gerber

Dr. Nancy Gerber

Published November 19, 2018

Specialized Teaching Faculty
Department of Art Ed









Nancy Gerber, Ph.D, ATR-BC is Associate Clinical Professor Emerita and founding and former director of the Ph.D Program in Creative Arts Therapies at Drexel University. She currently is Teaching Faculty at Florida State University in the graduate Art Therapy Program. Dr. Gerber’s 22 years of clinical experience as an art psychotherapist and supervisor of creative arts therapies in a psychiatric hospital were followed by her 14 year directorship of the Graduate Art Therapy Program at Drexel University. Completing her Ph.D on doctoral education in art therapy led to her creating, authoring, and directing the Ph.D Program in Creative Arts Therapies at Drexel University for eight years prior to coming to Florida State University. Dr. Gerber has presented and published on art therapy assessment, doctoral education for art therapists, mixed methods research, aesthetic intersubjective worldview in research and practice, arts-based research, imagination in research, and the transformative aspects of creative arts therapies. Dr. Gerber has 11years experience as vice-chair of the Social and Behavioral IRB at Drexel University, is a member of the Education Committee and current chair of the Doctoral Education Subcommittee for the American Art Therapy Association. She has co-created and currently co-facilitates the Arts-Based Research SIG at the International Congress of Qualitative Research. Dr. Gerber has also led the development of an Arts-Based Research Global Consortium which engages international arts-based researchers in developing defining principles and best practices for arts-based research while conducting socially responsible global arts-based research projects. Dr. Gerber has presented at the European Congress of Qualitative Inquiry (ECQI), the European Consortium for Arts Therapy Education Conference (ECArTE), the Mixed Methods International Research Association Conference (MMIRA) and the International Congress of Qualitative Inquiry (ICQI). Dr. Gerber has also co-created and co-taught a Global Classroom in Arts-Based Research with colleagues at the University of Milano-Bicocca, Italy. Dr. Gerber was the first recipient of the first Distinguished Educator’s Award from the American Art Therapy Association.


B.S in Art Education, Pennsylvania State University
M.S. in Mental Health Sciences, Art Therapy, Hahnemann Medical College and Hospital
Ph.D in Interdisciplinary Sciences, Union Institute and University

Areas of Responsibility

Teaching in the MS program in Art Therapy
Teaching in the Ph.D/Ed.D Program in Art Education/Art Therapy
Curriculum Development
Thesis advisement
Art Therapy Scholarship

Teaching Areas

Art Therapy Assessment
Group Counseling and Art Therapy
Research Philosophy and Theory for Art Therapy
Arts-Based Research
Self/other artistic inquiry for Creative Arts Therapists

Research Areas

Doctoral Education in Art Therapy and Creative Arts Therapies
Art Therapy Education
Mechanisms of change in the Creative Arts Therapies
Arts-based pedagogies
Arts and Mixed Methods Research Intersections
Sustaining Life on Earth: Arts-based responses to the lived experience of COVID-19
Art Therapy Research Strategic Planning

Select Scholarly/Creative Works & Awards

  • Gerber, N., Biffi, E., Biondo, J., Gemignani, M., Hannes, K., & Siegesmund, R. (2020). Arts-
    Based Research in the Social and Health Sciences: Pushing for Change with an Interdisciplinary Global Arts-Based Research Initiative. Forum Qualitative Sozialforschung / Forum: Qualitative Social Research, 21(2),
  • Gerber, N., Kapitan, L.,Gussak, D., Forinash, M., Kaimal, G., & LaCivita, J. (2020).
    Doctoral Education in Art Therapy: Current Trends and Future Directions. Art Therapy: Journal of the American Art Therapy Association. DOI: 10.1080/07421656.202
  • Gerber, N., Bryl, K., Potvin, N., & Blank, C. A. (2018). Arts-based research approaches to
    studying mechanisms of change and transformation in the Creative Arts Therapies. Frontiers in
    Psychology Special Issue: The state of the art in Creative Arts Therapies
  • Archibald, M., & Gerber, N. (2018). Arts and Mixed Methods Research: An Innovative
    Methodological Merger [Special issue]. American Behavioral Scientist.
  • Gerber, N., Templeton, E., Chilton, G., Cohen-Liebman, M.S., Manders, E., Shim, M. (2012). Art based research as a pedagogical approach to studying intersubjectivity in the creative arts therapies. Journal of Applied Arts & Health, 3(1), 39-48.
  • Gerber, N., & Myers-Coffman, K. (2017). Translation in Arts-Based Research. In P. Leavy
    (Ed.). Handbook of arts-based research (587-607). New York, NY: Guilford Press

Additional Scholarly/Creative Works & Awards

  • Associate Clinical Professor Emerita, Drexel University
  • Distinguished Educator Award American Art Therapy Association
  • Honorary Life Member Pennsylvania Art Therapy Association
  • Faculty Innovation Award College of Nursing and Health Professions, Drexel University