Professor Vicky Karkou

Professor Vicky Karkou, MD (Honoris Causa), PhD, MEd, PgDip(DMT), RDMP, BEdSc(Honors)


Chair of Dance, Arts and Wellbeing


She offers supervision to PhD and MA students and contributes to topics relating to arts psychotherapies (and dance movement psychotherapy in particular) and the broad area of the use of the arts in health and wellbeing at an undergraduate level.  She is currently working part-time for the Department of Performing Arts and part-time for the Faculty of Health and Social Care, also contributing to teaching in Counselling Degree.


1998       PhD (ESRC funded), University of Manchester, Faculty of Education, Manchester, UK
1994       Med, University of Manchester, Faculty of Education, Manchester, UK
1991       BEdSc (Honours), Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Thessaloniki, Greece

Other Professional Qualifications and Recognitions

2016       Kestenberg Movement Analysis, Edge Hill University, Ormskirk, UK
2014       Honorary Doctorate of Medicine, Riga Stradins University, Latvia
2012       Certificate in Creative Supervision (UKCP registered programme), Newcastle, UK
2012       Systematic Review protocols 1-3, UK Cochrane Centre, Oxford, UK
2010       Group Analysis Advanced Course Certificate, Institute of Group Analysis, Glasgow, UK
2001       Diploma in Dance Movement Therapy, University of Surrey Roehampton, London, UK
1995       Educational Research Methods by ESRC, University of Manchester, Manchester
1991       Teaching qualification, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece


Vicky’s main research area is around arts psychotherapies and the use of the arts (and improvisation) for health and wellbeing which she explores through a range of qualitative, quantitative and arts-based methodologies.  She has gained funding from the European Union and from other funding bodies for a number of projects in applied uses of the arts.  She has completed two Cochrane Systematic Reviews on depression and dementia:

  • Meekums B, Karkou V, Nelson EA. (2015) Dance movement therapy for depression. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2015, Issue 2. Art. No.: CD009895. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD009895.pub2 (Impact factor IF 5.912)
  • Karkou V, Meekums B. (2014) Dance movement therapy for dementia. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2014, Issue 3. Art. No.: CD011022. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD011022. (IF 5.912)

She is well published in national and international peer-reviewed journals, while has published chapters and books:

  • Karkou V and Sanderson P 2006. Arts Therapies: A Research-based Map of the Field. Edinburgh: Elsevier
  • Karkou V 2010 ed. Arts Therapies in Schools: Research and Practice. London: Jessica Kingsley
  • Karkou, V, Oliver S and Lycouris S (2017) (eds) The Oxford Handbook of Dance and Wellbeing. New York: Oxford University Press.
  • Zubala a and Karkou V (2018 in press) Arts Therapies Practice in the Treatment of Depression: International Research in Arts Therapies. London: New York.

She acts as the reviewer for a number of different journals including The Arts in Psychotherapy and The American Journal of Dance Therapy.  She is the co-editor for the international journal Body, Movement and Dance in Psychotherapy:

She acts as a consultant for different organisations including Crew 2000, a charity offering support to people with addictions, and Spinning Worlds, a voluntary service offering CAMHs services in schools in Liverpool and offers clinical supervision and support.

As an academic, she welcomes PhD applicants in arts therapies and related fields.

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