"How do I prepare the projective materials for analysis?'

Recorded Directions
You may listen to the following files which describe the pen and paper tasks you would need to complete. Or scroll below to find the written directions. Please not I have just added one download at the bottom to be printed and filled out, a new measure I am experimenting with.
Introduction to Projective Assessment - Annette Poizner
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How to Produce Handwriting Sample - Annette Poizner
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Dreams, Joke, 5 Words - Annette Poizner
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Tree Drawing - Annette Poizner
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Earliest Recollection Test - Annette Poizner
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Final Assignment: The Story - Annette Poizner
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Please click here to download an additional short assignment.

Written Directions


1) Grab a piece of plain white paper, no lines. Please spend five minutes drawing a picture of a tree. I say five minutes because I need a lot of details.

2) Grab another piece of plain white paper. Now please draw another type of tree. Once again spend five minutes drawing lots of details!


3) One more piece of white paper. Sit at a table and use a comfortable pen or pencil. Please handwrite a one-page essay, using paragraph form/essay format. You will write "the story of my day in detail." You are describing the story of today or the story of yesterday. Use your normal handwriting; not that quick handwriting you use when you are rushing.

On the back of the page, please sign your name three times. Some people have different signatures and you can show me those, or the same one three times. Please write your date of birth and your gender.

4) Moving forward, feel free to type the next exercises. Please write down five interesting words. Now don't over think this. A boring word is something like 'it' or 'the'. See if you can come up with a words more interesting words than those ones! Do that before you move to the next task.

5) Here's the animation: you have been babysitting for a five-year-old. You have played every game in that house. It really is bedtime and she refuses to go to bed. So finally you cut a deal: if you make up a bedtime story, she will go to bed. So your next task is to write a bedtime story for a child. The story begins, "Once upon a time…" You are going to use your five interesting words in this story.

Now there are two rules: firstly, something has to happen or it's not called a story. We need a bit of action. Secondly, a story has to have a beginning, a middle, and an end. Remember, she's got to get a half decent effort from you or she's not going to bed! Feel free to type your story and email it to me.

6) Next, you can submit dreams. Perhaps you remember some dreams from childhood, the kind of dream that you wake up with in the morning. Maybe you had recurrent dreams? Maybe you woke up with a dream this morning? Maybe tomorrow you will wake up with a dream? Write 'em down!

7) Finally, I would like you to complete a test called the Earliest Recollection Test. My caveat: if remembering memories from childhood is going to traumatize you or awaken unhappy emotions, I can adapt the test so that you can come up with other memories which will not upset you.

Otherwise, here are some directions to the the ER Test: every person has a handful of memories at the top of the mind that they can remember from childhood without prompting. Don't look at old pictures! Ask yourself, "what is my earliest memory?" Now the only catch is that I define a memory as something that only happened once. So don't come up with, "we used to go to the beach." It has to be, "one day, when we were at the beach, the following thing happened…."

Once you have your first memory that you're going to jot down, please write it down in as much detail as you can. Include a guess: how old are you? Then write: Vivid Moment. If you could only pick one part of the memory that is most vivid for you, which part is it? Write that down. Then write, "Vivid Feeling:" now you write down the feeling that you recall having in that vivid moment.

So you've written down one memory so far. I'm going to need 10 of these. Go for another one. When you get it, don't worry if that memory actually happened earlier than the other memory you came up with. I want the memories in the order that they came to you.

I'm looking for 10 different memories in this format. Ideally, memories before age 8. If you don't have any of those, then it can be later, adolescence or whatever . . . I'll take what you've got.

8) Once you have this done, please print and sign the consent form which you can access on this website. Feel free to ask for any clarification about the modalities discussed within the consent and to bring up any other questions you have. 


In terms of preparing the projections, it should take you 40 or 50 minutes but certainly not hours, we need to schedule our meeting. Usually, people bring their materials to the first meeting and I administer a couple of additional tests. Then it's time for me to take everything away and analyze it so I am ready for the second meeting, the feedback session.

If any questions come up while you are putting these materials together, feel free to let me know!

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