O desenho livre como estímulo de apercepção temática [Free drawing as a thematic apperception stimulus]

TRINCA, Walter (1972) – O desenho livre como estímulo de apercepção temática [Free drawing as a thematic apperception stimulus]. Doctoral Thesis. São Paulo (SP), Instituto de Psicologia da USP, 180 pp.

We have formulated the hypothesis that free drawings, associated with stories told by children and adolescents and to which free drawing stands as a stimulus, constitutes an instrument with characteristics of its own for attaining information about personality in aspects which are not easily detectable through direct psychological interview. We have introduced a new instrument, helpful in the dynamic investigation of the personality of children and adolescents (ages varying from 5 to 15), designated to supply additional clinical elements, having as a particular characteristic that of not being a psychological test, but rather, that of belonging to the methodology of psychological study as an intermediate procedure between non-structured interview and graphic and thematic projective techniques. It is called the Drawing-and-Story Procedure (D-E) and requires the examinee to execute a series of five free drawings (chromatic or achromatic) each one serving as a stimulus for a story freely associated and told by the examinee directly after finishing each drawing. Once finished each drawing-story, the examinee continues supplying further information (the “inquiry” phase) and the title of the story. The free drawings, thus, become thematic apperception stimuli. The characterization of the process as an intermediary one was deduced from the necessity of the clinical psychologist to adapt himself to forms of communication peculiar to children and adolescents. The Drawing-and-Story Procedure finds its fundamentals in the following basic suppositions: l)The subject may reveal his conflicts, dispositions, etc. upon structuring a situation not previously defined; 2) When the subject is placed in conditions for associating freely, these associations will tend to direct themselves toward sectors in which the individual is emotionally more sensitive; 3) The less direction and structure given to the stimulus, greater will be the probability of finding significant material in the response; 4)In the initial contact the patient may communicate the main conflicts which brought him to the clinic; 5) In the psychological clinic, children and adolescents prefer graphic communication and apperceptive fantasy to direct verbal communication; and 6)The sequence, under repetition, on graphic or verbal tests, may add an activation factor of the expression of psychological dynamism. With the purpose of partially studying our primary standing hypothesis, we organized an investigation designed to compare the D-E with some known techniques of thematic apperception. This research was a preliminary attempt of concomitant validation, as part of broader objectives. Therefore, we investigated the possibility of the D-E constituting itself as an instrument capable of obtaining information about dynamism of the maladjusted personality. It was compared with the TAT and the CAT-A and with a combination of the two. We gathered samples from 53 cases originating from psychological clinics where these subjects were submitted to simultaneous psychological study. The statistical treatment of the research material involved two separate analyses, the first through use of the Kendall Correlation Coefficient and the second through the Binomial Test. The conclusions, in all, revealed correlation and concordances statistically significant between the Drawing-and-Story Procedure and the tests which served as “criteria of confirmation”. These initial conclusions have encouraged us to proceed with the investigation, in view of which we suggest new research, in spite of the difficulties in validating procedures of this kind. We have also introduced in this work a primary referential to the analysis and interpretation of the material and 11 cases for illustration of the application of the new procedure in psychological study. Our efforts are justified by the introduction of a rapid, easy and economical instrument for use in surveys of large populations where resources are scarce and where the specialist does not dispose of sufficient time nor economic conditions in order to work with traditional methods. This work, therefore, proposes to give support to such communal and preventive aspects.

Walter Trinca Copyright 2001 – All rights reserved.

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