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Research Paper on a Study of a Cautionary Study:  Unwarranted Interpretations of the Draw-A-Person Test

 

Purpose:

To see whether or not clinicians would form interpretations of a draw-a-person test that was included in a case study they were asked to review whether or not they had the experience to. 

 

Participants: 

            -Participants recruited through fliers and phone calls (no random assignment)

-18 clinical psychologists

-18 counseling psychologists

 

Design: 

            -Descriptive correlational design

                        -no random assignment

                        -independent variable not manipulated

 

Procedure:

-Participants were given a case file of a man who had been diagnosed with passive aggressive personality disorder and elements of borderline personality to review

-attached to the study was a draw a person test that which was not drawn by the man from the case file

-Audiotapes were used to tape the responses of the participants in order to see who would make inferences about the case file based on the draw-a-person test. 

 

Results:

-17 of the 21 participants who had training in projective testing made inferences of the draw-a-person test

-5 of the 15 participants who had no training made inferences of the draw-a-person test

-only 1 participant of the 36 mentioned that there was a lack of validity for the draw-a-person test

 

Discussion:

-results showed that psychologists with little experience made gross generalizations on draw-a-person tests despite the fact that they had not been trained on these assessments, and the tests lack validity

 

Limitations/Fixations:

            -participants should have been randomly selected from the population

-participants should have been allowed to complete their evaluation away from the experimenter recording them

                        -observer bias

                        -participant bias