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Title: The development of children's drawings, with reference to possible indicators of sexual abuse
Author: Hagood, Maralynn M.
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 1998
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This longitudinal study investigated the normal drawing development of children assumed to be nonabused relative to indicators of possible sexual abuse. 306 Man, Woman, and Self drawings were collected from 34 nonabused children, ages 5-10, in a primary school in Scotland over a one and one-half year period of time in three phases. Children were divided into three smaller age groups, Primary One (ages 5-6) (N=12), Primary Three (ages 7-8) (N=10) and Primary Five (ages 9-10) (N=12). Subjects were given Raven's Coloured Progressive Matrices (CPM) and the British Picture Vocabulary Test (BPVT) as standardized measures of nonverbal and verbal mental ability, respectively. All drawings were scored using the Naglieri Draw-A-Person Test (DAP) which measure cognitive development. Drawings were subsequently scored using the Hagood Scoring Chart for Sex Abuse Indicators (SAI's) purported to be linked with sexual abuse and Anatomical Sex Abuse Indicators (ASAI's) which were sexual parts of the anatomy including genitalia in various forms. Drawing scores on the Naglieri DAP correlated significantly with the CPM and BPVT. There were no significant differences between scores of boys and girls on the DAP, but girls scored slightly higher. As predicted, there was a significant increase in DAP scores over time with older children scoring higher than younger children. It was also found that there were no significant differences between scores the Man, Woman, and Self drawings. SAI's did occur frequently in drawings of all nonabused children, with certain features appearing significantly more frequently than others and the data supported a developmental trend for a total of 14 different features. Ten SAI's did not appear in any of the 306 drawings and 15 other features occurred so infrequently that there appeared to be no connection with cognitive development. These latter 25 features therefore remain to be studied for possible links with sexual abuse or other related trauma. As predicted, there was a significant reduction of SAI's over the three phases of the study. Negative significant correlations were made between SAI's and the CPM, BPVT and DAP consistently demonstrating that SAI's were features of younger children's drawings. Analyses of SAI's for sex differences indicated no significant difference between boys and girls, but boys scored slightly higher than girls.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available