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Art Therapy Research – A Survey


Volume 12, Issue 3, Winter 1985, Pages 165-169 THE ARTS IN PSYCHOTHERAPY
Frederic B. Tate MA and Harry Allen EdD,CRC

The purpose of this study was to test the hypothesis that aged men and women prefer light colors rather than dark colors. Subjects consisted of 20 men and 20 women 65 years or older living in a nursing home. The authors used the Dvorine Pseudo-Isochromatic Plates Nomenclature test to eliminate those who were color blind or who had incorrect knowledge of color names. Color-aid Company cards were then presented to the subjects and ranked on a scale from 1 to 7 according to preference. A 2 (sex) × 4 (color) × 2 (light/dark) analysis of variance with repeated measures on the last two factors was used. Analysis of data indicated that both men and women subjects significantly preferred light colors over dark colors. A test-retest procedure using 50 percent of the subjects reflected strong, positive correlation between the two testings. A study of this nature should be helpful in designing art therapy sessions with the aged.

* The authors are affiliated with the Rehabilitation Institute at Southern Illinois University. Mr. Tate is a third-year doctoral candidate and Dr. Allen is a professor in the Doctoral Studies and Rehabilitation Counseling Programs of the Institute.

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