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TAT Interpretation

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Thematic Apperception TesT

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• is a projective test consisting of a 
series of pictures in which the 
examinee is requested to create a 
story about th...

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History: 
was conceptualized by Henry Murray 
and Christina Morgan on 1935. 
• Henry Murray 
– was born on May 13, 1893 in...

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TAT Interpretation

  1. 1. Thematic Apperception TesT
  2. 2. • is a projective test consisting of a series of pictures in which the examinee is requested to create a story about the picture. • method of revealing to the trained interpreter some of the dominant drives, emotions, sentiments, complexes and conflicts of personality. • Apperception – refer to the process of projecting fantasy imaginary onto an objective stimuli.
  3. 3. History: was conceptualized by Henry Murray and Christina Morgan on 1935. • Henry Murray – was born on May 13, 1893 into a wealthy family. – Has a good relationship with his father but poor one with his mother, that result him to feel depression.
  4. 4.  Christina Morgan - Born in Boston on October 6, 1887 - Had a lot of health problems. - Drowned herself on March 14, 1967 at the Virgin Islands
  5. 5. • Morgan – Murray Thematic apperception Test – the original name of the TAT but later on Murray is given primary credit for the test, along with the staff of Harvard Psychological Clinic. • 1938 the year that Tat was established in Harvard Psychological Clinic • Explorations in Personality in which the description of TAT was included.
  6. 6. • Murray’s Theory of Personality The TAT is so integrally involved with Murray’s concept of personality that a survey and knowledge of his basic theoretical components is important. In constructing the theory, Murray emphasizes the biological basis as well as the social and environmental determinants of behavior. He is also consistently aware of how individuals interact with their environment.
  7. 7. • 1960 – Mrs. Uma Coudhary developed Indian Adoption of TAT • Human Potential Movement – encouraged psychologists to use TAT to help their clients understand themselves better and stimulate personal growth.
  8. 8. General Conditions: • to be administered in an interpersonal setting. • Indian version of TAT materials consists of 13 cards on which ambiguous pictures are presented. • During administration, the subject should be seated beside the examiner with his or her chair turned away
  9. 9. Instructions: • The examiner will show some pictures one at a time, and the subject will be making up as dramatic a story as he/she can for each picture card. 50 minutes for 10 pictures. The following story structure must be obtained:
  10. 10. a) current situation ; what is happening at the moment? b) thoughts and feelings of the character (s); what the characters are feeling and thinking? c) preceding events; what has led up to the event shown in the picture? d) outcome ; what was the outcome?
  11. 11. Procedures: • TIME time measured should begin when the picture is first presented and end when the subject begins his or her story. • RECORDING a subject’s complete responses should be recorded, along with any noteworthy behavioral observations: exclamation, stuttering, pauses, blushing, degree of involvement , and change in voice inflection.
  12. 12. • QUESTIONING and INQUIRY to produce an unhampered and free-flow of the subject’s fantasy material. • ORDER OF PRESENTATION usually, the cards should be administered according to their sequential numbering system.
  13. 13. Scoring: The Psychological Corporation For each of the scoring categories, practitioners should abbreviate their observations about the person. In some sections, practitioners are asked to indicate the levels of importance or strength for the per by putting one check (mere presence of characteristics), two checks (moderate) or three checks (strong). The entire scoring and interpretation procedure typically takes a half-hour.
  14. 14. • H.A Murray, 1943 scoring the TAT involves evaluating the following five different aspects of the stories:  The Hero. Scoring for the hero involves identifying who is central character(s) in the story  Need of the Hero. For Murray, it was also critical to identify the needs, motives and desire of the hero.  Identifying the presses. A press refer to any important environmental factor that may influence or interfere with the need of the hero. Example: (parents or boss), (the lock on the door is broken)
  15. 15.  Scoring for themes. Scoring for themes in TAT stories involves noting the nature of the interplay and conflict between the needs and presses, the types of emotion elicited by this conflict, and the way the conflict is resolved.  Scoring for outcome. Scoring for the outcome of the story involves analyzing how the stories end by noting a happy versus unhappy ending and assessing the extent to which the ending is controlled by the strengths of the hero and forces in the environment.
  16. 16. Interpretation: • Nomethetic and Idiogrphic. 1. Nomothethic Interpretation refers to the practice of establishing norms for answer from subjects in specific age, gender, racial, or educational level groups and then measuring a given subject’s responses against those norms. 2. Idiographic Interpretation refers to evaluating the unique features of the subject’s view of the world and relationships. Most psychologists would classify the TAT is better suited to idiographic than nomothethic interpretations
  17. 17. • In interpreting the responses of the TAT, the examiners typically focus their attention on one of the three (3) areas: •The content of the stories that the subject tells; •The feeling or the tone of the stories; •The subject’s behavior apart from responses. These behavior may include: Verbal Remarks (e.g. comments about feeling stressed by situation or not being good story teller) as well as Nonverbal Actions or Signs (e.g. blushing stammering, fidgeting in the chair, difficulties making an eye contact with the examiner, etc.)
  18. 18. • The story content usually reveals the subject’s attitudes, fantasies, wishes, inner conflicts, and view of the outside world. • The story structure typically reflects the subject’s feelings, assumptions about the world, and an underlying attitude of optimism or pessimism.
  19. 19. The 3 Levels of Interpretations suggest by Bellak & Abram, 1997 are: •Descriptive Level- it is the mere repeat of the story •Interpretative Level- It extends the descriptive level by an alteration of it [if one does the X, then the outcome will be Y.]. •Diagnostic Level- It is the further extension I that an interference is made about the client.
  20. 20. • In Example Given: PICTURE 1 – Descriptive level (the boy is practicing to increase his competence.) – Interpretative level (If one practice, then he or she will improve.) – Diagnostic level (The client has a high need for achievement with a high level of self- efficacy.
  21. 21. Results: • The results of the TAT must be interpreted in the context of the subject’s personal history, age, sex, level of education, occupation, racial or ethnic identification first language, and other characteristics that may be important.
  22. 22. • The results of the Thematic Apperception Test are difficult to generalize. The results are often subjective and do not use any formal type of scoring system. However, a close analysis of the stories told by the subject normally gives the tester a decent idea of the traits mentioned above (personality, emotional control, and attitudes towards aspects of everyday life).
  23. 23. – Thematic Apperception Tests are less beneficial to individuals. However, individuals can use the results to determine if an industry or company is right for them. The results can also help the person understand their unconscious self, which can help them find ways to successfully increase their productivity and efficacy on the job. A true understanding of one self can provide over your co-workers and competitors.
  24. 24. Thematic Apperception Test (TAT) Picture 1: A boy is sitting and looking at a Tanpura placed in front of him.
  25. 25. Personality characteristics • As per description of the subject following traits may be traced – Creativity – Imagination ability
  26. 26. Picture 2 : Country scene with a woman working in the foreground. In the background, a man is working in a field while a woman watches.
  27. 27. General Discussion This is the card in the series that presents the group scene and gives information relating to how the individual deals with the challenge of people living together.
  28. 28. Personality characteristics • As per description of the subject following traits may be traced – Imagination power – Nature loving – Aesthetic sense – Attitude towards life of different workers
  29. 29. Picture 3: : An older man is looking at a younger man.
  30. 30. General Discussion • This card is extremely useful in obtaining information about the authority figures and, more specifically the subjects own father. The picture deals with hierarchical Personal relationships and usually takes the form of an older, more experienced man interacting with the younger, less experienced one.. Thus, the card can clearly show how the subject deals with external demands and attitudes toward authority.
  31. 31. Picture 4 : A young girl is seated on a couch and is holding a doll in her hands. Behind her is an older woman.
  32. 32. General Discussion The intention here is to bring out the style and manner of mother-child interaction. When the older women are the subjects, the picture often elicits feelings and attitudes toward children. Because both figures are looking away, either figure is sometimes perceived as rejecting the other. This, the card draws out negative feeling and interactions, and it is important to note how these feelings are resolved, expressed, or avoided. Sometimes the older woman is described as reading a fairy story to the younger girl.
  33. 33. Picture 5 : A woman is standing in front of of a man .
  34. 34. General Discussion • This picture typically elicits a good deal of information relating to the feelings and attitudes surrounding male-female relationship.
  35. 35. Personality characteristics • Attitude towards male – female relationship • Attitude of male towards female and vice versa • Capacity for mutual respect
  36. 36. Picture 6 : An woman is standing in front of a man in opposite face
  37. 37. • Attitude towards male – female relationship • Information about Emotional aspects • Information about Social relationship
  38. 38. Picture 7 : A woman has her hands around the throat of another woman. In the background is a flight of stairs.
  39. 39. General Discussion The manner in which the subject handles aggressive, hostile relationships with the other women is primary type of information this picture elicits. Particular note should be made of what types of events trigger this aggressiveness, and of the manner in which the conflict is or is not resolved
  40. 40. Picture 8 : A beautiful scenario of the village. No human figures are present.
  41. 41. • The picture is describing the nature and so it is good test of the subjects’ imaginative abilities.
  42. 42. Picture 9 : One person is holding his or her head against another person’s shoulder. One woman is looking from window.
  43. 43. Picture 10 One Young man is a close relation with one women. Another woman watching this.
  44. 44. General Discussion • This card often gives useful information regarding how the subject perceives male-female relationship, particularly those involving some degree of closeness and intimacy. It might be helpful to notice the relative degree of comfort or discomfort evoked by emotional closeness. A story of departure or of termination of the relationship may be reflective of either overt or denied hostility on the part of the subject.
  45. 45. General Discussion • These card also deals with female peer relations and is important in elaborating on the issues such as conflict resolution, jealousy, sibling rivalry, and competitiveness.
  46. 46. Picture 11 : A Woman in front of a broken house
  47. 47. General Discussion The picture often elicits information regarding a subject’s attitudes toward loneliness, darkness, and uncertainty. Fears may be stated explicitly through gangster stories. As with Picture, the method of handling these fears and the examinee’s response to physical danger should be noted.
  48. 48. General Discussion • With suicidal or depressed subjects, there may be an elaboration of feelings of abandonment and isolation), for example: someone has been lost or has been fallen from a boat. More stable and adjusted subjects are likely to discuss the peace of being alone in the woods and perhaps of fishing or having gone fishing further down the stream.
  49. 49. Picture 12 : A young man is standing in the foreground with his head in his arms. In the background is a woman lying in a bed.
  50. 50. General Discussion This picture is often helpful in revealing sexual conflicts. In a general way, it provides information on the subject’s attitudes and feelings toward his or her partner, in particularly attitudes just before and immediately following the sexual relation. Stories in which there are overt expressions of aggression or revulsion are significant variations and should be noted as relatively unusual. In particular, the relation between a subject’s aggressive and sexual feelings is frequently portrayed.
  51. 51. Picture 13 : A person is standing against a window.
  52. 52. General Discussion • If a subject’s presenting problem is depression, especially if there is evidence of suicidal ideation, this card along with Picture . This type of subject often describes the figure in the picture and, more importantly discusses the events, feeling, and attitudes that led up to the current self-destructive behavior. It becomes important to investigate, during the inquiry phase of examination, the particular methods and styles of problem solving that the story character has attempted or is attempting This picture may also reveal the subject’s aesthetics interest and personal philosophical beliefs or wish fulfillments.

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