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July 15, 1968

Psychological Evaluation of Children's Human Figure Drawings

JAMA. 1968;205(3):190. doi:10.1001/jama.1968.03140290082037

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Often a physician would like a measure for a child's intelligence and emotional state but does not wish either to refer the child to a psychologist or to carry out lengthy tests himself. If he asks the child to "draw a whole person" and then evaluates the drawing by the methods described in this book, he can get a quick estimate of the mental ability, the probability of serious emotional disturbance, and the possibility of organic brain disorder.

For a long time many psychologists have used the Goodenough Draw-A-Man test as a measure of intelligence, but the scoring is somewhat complicated and probably few physicians have used the test. Other psychologists have used human figure drawings as projective tests to investigate personality but have not developed definite scoring methods. Now Koppitz presents a relatively simple method of scoring a single drawing, first for approximate intelligence, then for evidence of emotional