Date of Award


Degree Type

Selective Evidence-Based Medicine Review

Degree Name

Master of Science in Health Sciences - Physician Assistant


Physician Assistant Studies

Department Chair

John Cavenagh, MBA, PhD, PA-C


OBJECTIVE: The objective of this selective evidence-based medicine (EBM) review is to determine whether or not Dance/Movement Therapy (DMT) is an effective treatment for depression in students.

STUDY DESIGN: Systematic review of three published, randomized controlled trials (RCTs) between 2005 and 2013, all English language

DATA SOURCES: Three RCTs analyzing DMT use in depression were found using PudMed

OUTCOMES MEASURED: Decrease in depressive symptoms, measured by the Beck Depression Scale, a self-rated health questionnaire, and Symptom Check List-90-Revision (SCL- 90-R)

RESULTS: DMT resulted in lessened depressive symptoms for students in all three RCTs. Jeong et al. observed a significant decrease (p=0.001) in depressive symptoms of the DMT group compared to the control group via an F-score analysis of anxiety and depression subscale scores of the SCL-90-R8. An unpaired t-test of post-intervention Beck Depression Scale scores in both the dance intervention and control groups of the Akandere and Demir study also demonstrated significant differences in scores (p=0.004), suggesting greater reduction of depressive symptoms in the dance intervention group9. Finally, Duberg et al. utilized an 88-question self-rated health questionnaire, revealing significant improvement (p

CONCLUSIONS: All three studies demonstrated that DMT is an effective therapy treatment for depression in students. Incorporating DMT into the lives of middle school through universityaged students resulted in decreased depressive symptoms and ultimately improved quality of life. Given its versatile and variable nature, DMT can be utilized for many different kinds of patients as either an adjunctive therapy to currently practiced treatments or as monotherapy for mild depression.