Brains on Canvas — Reflective Art by our Northern Medical Program Students

This spring, the Health Arts Research Centre staff was involved in a Northern Medical Program student-led project entitled Brains on Canvas. This project was the result of UBC’s FLEX curriculum, a mandatory research component of the Medical Undergraduate program for students in years 1, 2, and 4.​ The project team includedfirst-year medical students Daveen Panesar, Deanna Klonarakis, and Nick Broc​her, Dr. Alina Constantin, Assistant Director of Anatomy with the NMP, and Charis Alderfer-Mumma, a board-certified Art Therapist and Research Manager with the Health Arts Research Centre. The focus of the project was to assess how art expression could be used by medical students for releasing and processing stress, enhancing self-reflection, and improving clinical understanding. Components included a literature review exploring the evidence behind combining arts and medicine, a methods review into the design and implementation of an art expression session, interviews with an Art Therapist, creating art activity templates, first-hand engagement in visual art activities, and organizing and facilitating an evening art expression session with other NMP medical students.

If you’d like to read more about this project in the words of the students involve​d, click here.

If you’d like to view the art activity worksheets that Daveen, Deanna, and Nick created to share with other health care students and providers, please see our new Art Worksheets category here.