A perceptual training and drawing programme to assist the drawing development of eight year old children

  • Cathy Speck

Student thesis: Master's Thesis


The purpose of this study was to investigate the effectiveness of a series of perceptual training and drawing lessons on the drawing behaviour of children of eight years of age, in year three classes in some South Australian middle income schools. A literature search revealed that the drawing behaviour of children is responsive to perceptual training and drawing classes, and furthermore that an improvement in drawing ability has resulted from such programmes. Children of eight years of age were selected for two reasons. Their drawing development has generally become schematic, which means that a certain degree of stereotyping is used in their drawing. And in addition the perceptual development of eight year olds is considered by many perceptual theorists to be sufficiently advanced for a series of training lessons. Also as a result of perceptual development children of eight years of age are able to participate in a drawing test which involves the drawing of objects or models based on the observation of such objects or models. A pretest-posttest with control group design was used in this study. The experimental and control groups were selected from a sufficiently large sample of schools. The groups selected were randomly assigned to be experimental or control groups in the study. A Salome modified drawing test was administered to each experimental and control group in the study. This drawing test which consisted in the subjects being required to draw three objects, was administered as a pretest and a posttest to all groups by the researcher. The experimental groups received a treatment which consisted of six weekly sessions involving perceptual training and drawing exercises. The control group continued with their normal art lessons with their class teacher. The test drawings were scored by three judges on a Salome modified rating scale. A scoring procedure was devised so that the judges were unaware whether the drawings to be scored were pretest, or posttest, control group or experimental group. The following statistical tests were conducted on the drawing scores using an SPSS computer programme: a t-test for age a t-test to determine whether there was a significant difference between the mean scores of the experimental and the control groups. an analysis of variance to determine whether there was a significant difference between the gain scores of the experimental and control groups. - and Pearson Product Moment Correlation Coefficients for rater inter-reliability. All statistical tests demonstrated that the experimental groups gained significantly higher posttest drawing scores. All statistical tests produced results as the 0.05 level of significance. The implications for curriculum design, and the practice of teaching drawing in primary schools, are that interventionist drawing programmes of the kind used in this study do aid drawing development. Drawing is a basic skill in art, thus a perceptual training and drawing programme which aids drawing development will also improve other modes of artistic expression.
Date of Award1984
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • University of Canberra

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