Encyclopedia of Personality and Individual Differences

Living Edition
| Editors: Virgil Zeigler-Hill, Todd K. Shackelford

Draw-a-Person Tests

  • R. W. Kamphaus
  • Eva Kurtz-Nelson
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-28099-8_892-1

Definition

Draw-a-person tests are intended to assess intelligence or psychopathology by having an individual draw a human figure during a short period of time and then interpreting the drawing in accordance with a scoring system.

History and Current Status

These tests are part of the rich history of psychological assessment dating to at least Florence Goodenough’s Draw-A-Man Test of 1926. Numerous surveys of psychological practitioners have documented that various iterations of these measures have enjoyed widespread popularity to this day for assessing children’s intelligence and child and adult psychopathology (Lilienfeld et al. 2000). Other widely used and cited examples of the basic technique include Machover’s (1949) scoring system for human figure drawings, the Goodenough-Harris Drawing Test (1963), Koppitz “emotional indicators” scoring system for children’s human figure drawings, Naglieri’s (1988) Draw-A-Person: A Quantitative Scoring System (DAP:QSS), and Reynolds and...

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References

  1. Abell, S. C., Von Briessen, P. D., & Watz, L. S. (1991). Intellectual evaluations of children using human figure drawings: An empirical investigation of two methods. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 52(1), 67–74.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Abell, S. C., Wood, W., & Leibman, S. J. (2001). Children’s human figure drawings as measures of intelligence: The comparative validity of three scoring systems. Journal of Psychoeducational Assessment, 19(3), 204–215.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
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  4. Harris, D. B., & Goodenough, F. L. (1963). Goodenough-Harris drawing test. San Antonio: Pearson.Google Scholar
  5. Imuta, K., Scarf, D., Pharo, H., & Hayne, H. (2013). Drawing a close to the use of human figure drawings as a measure of intelligence. PloS One, 8(3), 1–8.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
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  7. Lilienfeld, S. O., Wood, J. M., & Garb, H. N. (2000). The scientific status of projective techniques. Psychological Science in the Public Interest, 1(2), 27–66.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Machover, K. (1949). Personality projection: In the drawing of a human figure. Springfield: Charles C Thomas Publisher.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Naglieri, J. A. (1988). Draw a person: A quantitative scoring system. San Antonio: Pearson.Google Scholar
  10. Rae, G., & Hyland, P. (2001). Generalisability and classical test theory analyses of Koppitz’s scoring system for human figure drawings. British Journal of Educational Psychology, 71(3), 369–382.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Reynolds, C. R., & Hickman, J. A. (2004). Draw-A-Person intellectual ability test for children, adolescents, and adults. Austin: PRO-ED.Google Scholar
  12. Willcock, E., Imuta, K., & Hayne, H. (2011). Children’s human figure drawings do not measure intellectual ability. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 110(3), 444–452.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.College of EducationUniversity of OregonEugeneUSA

Section editors and affiliations

  • Bradley A. Green
    • 1
  1. 1.University of Southern MississippiHattiesburgUSA