House TreePerson HTP Art Assessments

Not unlike Karen Machover's DAP assessment, the HTP has been modified from its original design and now tends to be shortened both in degree and application. However, as outlined earlier, this modified version can still yield accurate data when combined with Buck's scoring system for aptitude and intelligence.

In the end the HTP yields both conscious and unconscious information concerning the client's personality, interpersonal relationships, and interactions with the environment. As a result, it offers a broad spectrum in which to appraise all clientele, especially children who are beginning to branch out into their growing world. For this reason, in an initial evaluation, I prefer to administer the HTP to children and the DAP to adults.

Before we review case illustrations, the directives for the modified HTP assessment are as follows:

• Offer the client one sheet of 9" x 12" paper.

• Give this directive: "Using as many or as few colors as you like, draw the best house you can."

• Once the house is complete, ask the client "draw the best tree that you can" on the same piece of paper.

• Once the tree is complete, ask the client to draw "the best person" he or she can on the same piece of paper, adding, "The person should be a whole figure, not just a floating head or stick figure."

• After this is complete, have the client give the picture a title and write it on the paper.

• Begin the postdrawing inquiry by requesting, "tell me what's going on in this picture."

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