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The Draw-A-Person test (DAP) was developed by Machover in 1948 and used figure drawings in a more projective way, focusing on how the drawings reflected the anxieties, impulses, self-esteem, and personality of the test taker.
- Children are first asked to draw a picture of a person.
- they are then asked to draw a picture of a person of the opposite sex to the first drawing.
- They can also be asked to draw a picture of the self and/or family members.
- They are asked a series of questions about themselves and the drawings. These questions can be about the mood, the ambitions, and the good and bad qualities of the people in the drawings.
A scoring system appropriate for adults was developed in 1993 by Mitchel, Trent, and McArthur. They provided a system for rating the replies giving information about the child's anxieties, impulses, and overall personality.
In 1992, Naglieri et al created a more specific standardized scoring system called the Draw-A-Person: Screening Procedure of Emotional Disturbance (DAP:SPED), based on a large sample. This scoring method includes 55 items rated by the test administrator and based on the child's drawings and responses to questions. The DAP:SPED is appropriate for children aged six to 17. It is often used as a screening method for children social adjustment difficulties and require further evaluation.