Author ORCID Identifier

Year of Publication


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Document Type

Master's Thesis


Fine Arts


Art and Visual Studies

First Advisor

Dr. Allan Richards


Humanity is synergistic with art and medicine. Likewise, art education can be impactful throughout medical education. Art as a tool to develop the next generation of healthcare differs from the clinical goals of creative art therapies. Over the prior decade, many medical schools now provide curricular offerings in the arts and humanities. Less is known about the application in postgraduate medical settings. The focus of this thesis is to review the pairing of artist-educators with postgraduate medical training programs.

One such program is ArtsCAFE (Arts Connect Around Food and Enrichment), an intercollegiate project fusing experienced arts educators with medical educators to improve trainee experiences across disciplinary boundaries. The ArtsCAFE pilot study provided monthly visual art-making workshops to surgical residents and their guests at a single university-affiliated institution. Resident participants self-reported on their overall sense of support and communication effectiveness.

Response to the pilot showed encouraging results—limitations, including the COVID-19 pandemic, paired with the pilot performance to stimulate further exploration. In review, art activities have the potential for replication in postgraduate medical training programs. This thesis provides a roadmap by which art educators and medical education programs may further develop enrichment efforts for trainees or faculty.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

Funding Information

This study was financially supported by the UK HealthCare Arts in HealthCare program from 2018-2022.