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analysis of graphology

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  • Peg Daniels
    It just dawned on me that Mr. De Armond, and perhaps others, *may* not have caught the type of studies to which the previous material I sent referred. Let me
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 3, 2005
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      It just dawned on me that Mr. De Armond, and perhaps
      others, *may* not have caught the type of studies to
      which the previous material I sent referred. Let me
      make it clearer: these were NOT done by people
      "pretending" to be a graphologist and looking at
      people's handwriting, analyzing it as they thought a
      graphologist might, and then comparing their results
      to reality.

      The article I cited by Mr. Dean is a meta-analysis.
      Sorry --even tho that was in the title of the article
      by Dean I cited, that might not have registered with
      some. In case you missed that, let me explain a bit
      more. I am not a statistician, so please consult your
      local one for more in-depth explanation. :-)

      A meta-analysis is a collection of systematic
      techniques used in examining research findings of a
      group of studies. Meta-analysts translate results from
      different studies to a common metric and statistically
      explore relations between study characteristics and

      There. I trust it's all clear now. :-) Uh-oh. I think
      I see Bill with a bomb. Okay, okay, the main point is,
      Mr. Dean was doing a statistical meta-analysis of
      *existing* scientific studies on graphology, not
      passing himself off as a graphologist and conducting
      his own study.

      The other studies I mentioned were those cited at
      skepdic.dom (you can find further elaboration of those
      studies at
      but I'll just add a few words here to what was
      mentioned before -- except for my inclusion of the
      definition of "blind study," this is all taken
      directly from the above-mentioned bccla site).

      In those studies researchers conducted properly
      controlled, blind studies (blind studies are those in
      which the experimenter is unaware of which group is
      subject to which procedure), where the handwriting
      samples contain no content that could provide
      non-graphological information upon which to base a
      prediction (e.g., a piece copied from a magazine).They
      found that *graphologists* (my emphasis) do no better
      than chance at
      predicting the personality traits (Rafaeli & Klimosky
      [1983], Ben-Shakhar [1986], Karnes [1988], Jansen
      [1973]). There is also ample evidence (Karnes, 1988)
      that a randomly-chosen graphologist's report will be
      accepted overwhelmingly as an excellent description of
      themselves by a large group who think it was done
      individually for them.


      Here are the references for those papers, should
      anyone care to inspect them further:

      KLIMOSKY, Richard & Anat RAFAELI (1983): "Inferring
      Personal Qualities Through Handwriting Analysis",
      Journal of Occupational Psychology, Vol. 56, pp.

      KARNES, Edward (1986): "Graphoanalytic and
      Psychometric Personality Profiles: Validity and Barnum
      Effects", in press.

      BEN-SHAKHAR, Gershon, M. BAR-HILLEL, Y. BILU, E.
      BEN-ABBA & A. FLUG (1986): "Can Graphology Predict
      Occupational Success? Two Empirical Studies and Some
      Methodological Ruminations", Journal of Applied
      Psychology, Vol. 71, pp. 645-53.

      JANSEN, A. (1973): Validation of Graphological
      Judgments: An Experimental Study, The Hague, Mouten.


      There are many more studies cited on the above bccla
      site, and also some very interesting related reading.

      Okay, I think I hear the cows coming home now. Pop
      quiz sometime next week.

      Dr. Peg Daniels

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