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A correlational analysis between handwriting characteristics and personality type by the Myers-Briggs type indicator

Dissertation
Author: S. Joy Fox
Abstract:
A quantitative study was conducted with 82 right-handed individuals to understand the relationship between handwriting and personality. Three measurements of handwriting--slant, size, and pressure--were compared with results of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), Form M assessment. The participants were at least 25 years old, but under 56 years old. Correlational analyses were used to verify relationships among the three measures of handwriting, and any of the dichotomous scales inherent in the MBTI: Extroversion/Introversion, Sensing/Intuition, Thinking/Feeling, and Judging/Perceiving. No significant relationships were found; therefore, the null hypothesis was retained. Keywords : MBTI, Form M, personality, right-handed, handwriting, slant, size, pressure

A CORRELATIONAL ANALYSIS BETWEEN HANDWRITING 4 Table of Contents List of Tables………………………………………………………………………. 6 List of Figures……………………………………………………………………… 7 List of Appendices…………………………………………………………………. 8 Abstract…………………………………………………………………………….. 9 I. Introduction………………………………………………………………… 10 1.1 General Statement……………………………………………… 11 1.2 Statement of Problem…………………………………………... 15 1.3 Statement of Purpose…………………………………………... 16 1.4 Assumptions and Limitation…………………………………………… 17 II. Review of Literature……………………………………………………….. 19 2.1 Graphology…………………………………………………….. 19 A. The History Graphology………………………………... 19 B. Computer Research and Handwriting…………………... 22 C. Predictive Handwriting…………………………………. 23 D. Gender in Handwriting…………………………………. 25 E. Consistency of Handwriting…………………………….. 26 F. Projective Qualities of Handwriting…………………….. 27 G. Pressure in Handwriting………………………………… 27 H. Size in Handwriting…………………………………….. 30 I. Slant in Handwriting…………………………………….. 31 2.2 Handwriting Link to Jung‘s Typology…………………………. 31 2.3 Myers-Briggs Type Indicator…………………………………... 33 A. The History of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator………. 33 B. Prevalence of Type Between Groups…………………… 35 C. Step II (Form Q) Versus Step I (Form M)……………… 36 D. MBTI Construct Validity of Extroversion……………… 37 E. Psychometrics of the MBTI……………………………...38 III. Methods……………………………………………………………………. 42 3.1 Participant Characteristics……………………………………... 42 3.2 Sampling Procedure……………………………………………. 42 A. Sample Type……………………………………………. 42 B. Sample Size……………………………………………... 42 3.3 Instruments……………………………………………………... 44 A. Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) Form M………… 44 B. Author-constructed Variables…………………………... 44 C. Handwriting Sample…………………………………….. 45 D. Measurements…………………………………………... 45 1. Slant……………………………………………... 46 2. Size………………………………………………. 46 3. Pressure………………………………………….. 47 3.5 Procedure………………………………………………………. 47 3.6 Data Analysis Plan……………………………………………... 48

A CORRELATIONAL ANALYSIS BETWEEN HANDWRITING 5 IV. Results……………………………………………………………………… 50 4.1 MBTI Data……………………………………………………... 50 4.2 Handwriting Data………………………………………………. 52 4.3 Support for the Hypothesis…………………………………….. 53 A. Statistical Tests…………………………………………. 53 B. Understanding the Hypothesis………………………….. 54 4.3 Supplemental Analyses………………………………………… 55 4.4 Summary in Support of the Hypothesis………………………... 57 V. Discussion………………………………………………………………….. 58 5.1 Confounds and Basic Handwriting Measurement Drawbacks… 58 A. Confounds………………………………………………. 58 B. Measurement Techniques……………………………….. 59 C. Measurement Choices…………………………………... 60 5.2 Considering the Personality Assessment………………………. 60 5.3 MBTI Points of Interest………………………………………... 60 5.4 Considering Participants‘ Demographics……………………… 62 A. Education……………………………………………….. 62 B. Race……………………………………………………... 63 5.5 Categorical Measures…………………………………………... 63 5.6 Conclusion……………………………………………………... 63 VI. References………………………………………………………………….. 64

A CORRELATIONAL ANALYSIS BETWEEN HANDWRITING 6 List of Tables

Table 1: Participant Characteristics………………………………………………………... 43 Table 2: Handwriting Inter-Rater Agreement……………………………………………… 46 Table 3: Letter Type and Gender Comparison…………………………………………….. 50 Table 4: Representative MBTI Types by Gender………………………………………….. 51 Table 5: Comparison of Top Types with the National Samples…………………………… 52 Table 6: Thinking / Feeling Crosstabulation with Writing Size…………………………… 54 Table 7: Chi-Square Test…………………………………………………………………... 54 Table 8: Comparison of Significance Levels………………………………………………. 55

A CORRELATIONAL ANALYSIS BETWEEN HANDWRITING 7 List of Figures

Figure 1: MBTI Degrees of Preferences…………………………………………………… 56 Figure 2: Averages of MBTI Ranges………………………………………………………. 56

A CORRELATIONAL ANALYSIS BETWEEN HANDWRITING 8 List of Appendices

Appendix A: Instructional Letter…………………………………………………………... 74

Appendix B: Packet Information With Web Site………………………………………….. 75

Appendix C: Referral………………………………………………………………………. 76

Appendix D: Consent Form………………………………………………………………... 77

Appendix E: Participant Disclosure/Demographic Form………………………………….. 78

Appendix F: Handwriting Directions……………………………………………………….79

Appendix G: Inter-Rater Instructions With Slant/Size Templates………………………… 80 Appendix H: Raw Data…………………………………………………………………….. 83 Appendix I: Strengths of Type Preferences………………………………………………... 85

A CORRELATIONAL ANALYSIS BETWEEN HANDWRITING 9 Abstract A quantitative study was conducted with 82 right-handed individuals to understand the relationship between handwriting and personality. Three measurements of handwriting—slant, size, and pressure—were compared with results of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), Form M assessment. The participants were at least 25 years old, but under 56 years old. Correlational analyses were used to verify relationships among the three measures of handwriting, and any of the dichotomous scales inherent in the MBTI: Extroversion/Introversion, Sensing/Intuition, Thinking/Feeling, and Judging/Perceiving. No significant relationships were found; therefore, the null hypothesis was retained. Keywords: MBTI, Form M, personality, right-handed, handwriting, slant, size, pressure .

A CORRELATIONAL ANALYSIS BETWEEN HANDWRITING 10

A Correlational Analysis Between Handwriting Characteristics and Personality Type by the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator It seems reasonable to hypothesize that handwriting characteristics represent personality traits because both are unique for each individual. Srihari, Cha, Arora, and Lee, (2002) have developed software that can detect 11 distinctive features that characterize the structure of writing and 512 characteristics of individual letters and numbers. The mathematical permutation of 11 features alone is 39,916,800, an impressive variety in structural differences in handwriting. The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator measures 16 personality types and identifies individuals based on their preferences. Testing for positive correlations between individuals‘ handwriting and the results of their Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, may prove to be beneficial for self-understanding. Some researchers have objected to claims made by graphologists that an analysis of handwriting depicts ―the whole personality‖ (Thiry, 2009, p 26). It is unlikely that handwriting captures all of the complexities of individuals‘ personalities. Rather, some aspects of handwriting seem to indicate certain personality constructs. In general, researchers have failed to examine handwriting at fundamental levels, but have instead compared the results of handwriting validity between graphologists or have compared it with that of non-graphologists (Thomas & Vaught, 2001). Some researchers (Ben- Shakhar, Bilu, Ben-Abba, & Flug, 1986; Honey, 1992) have determined there is little validity in using handwriting samples as a hiring tool to evaluate applicants‘ employment potential. Thiry (2008) used the NEO RI-R Five-Factor Model (Costa & McCrae, 1985) as a correlating reference point with handwriting, but neither the hypothesis, nor the graphological

A CORRELATIONAL ANALYSIS BETWEEN HANDWRITING 11 assumptions were supported. The study did show correlations, but it was pervaded with Type I errors (error that occurs when a null hypothesis is rejected although it is true) and failed to account for the whole personality. This outcome is not surprising, since it is unlikely that handwriting can reveal the whole personality. Due to the paucity of research in using objective measurements as building blocks for corollary determinants between handwriting and personality, a study with objective measurements provided a way to capture a possible relationship, if one existed, between the two. This research used the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), Form M, to measure personality type by self-report for energy attitude (extrovert or introvert), perception function (sensing or intuitive), judgment function (thinking or feeling), and orientation to the outer world (judging or perceiving). It also used exact measurements of slant, size, and pressure in handwriting. These three measurements represent common features of handwriting. General Statement Insight into historical and current studies was available in the literature. According to Ben-Shakhar et al. (1986), graphologists did not perform better than a chance model when testing for the validity of graphological predictions of relevant personality traits among bank employees. This classic empirical study was one of the most cited investigations to debunk handwriting as a valid screen for desirable employee attributes in the hiring process. Ben- Shakhar et al. found graphological analysis to be a nonstandard assessment, based on qualitative descriptions of personality that were difficult to correlate with any independent criterion. Two possible ways were offered to account for this problem: using standardized assessments, or selecting an evaluation method that supported nonstandard assessments. To standardize the assessment, the researchers suggested that graphologists should rate the writers only on

A CORRELATIONAL ANALYSIS BETWEEN HANDWRITING 12 predefined traits and eliminate subjective descriptions (Shakhar, et al.). This approach was used in the present study. Ben-Shakhar et al., (1986) identified a problem in taking a standardized approach where proponents of graphology and the graphologists themselves were involved. Most graphologists reported a sense of discomfort in approaching handwriting analysis from a standardized approach due to the potential for humans to be inconsistent (Bem & Allen, 1974). They preferred to provide overall subjective descriptions to allow for the inconsistency. According to Bem and Allen, how one looked at the measurements determined how one made interpretations. For example, predictive perspectives were suspect in terms of validity. It seems reasonable to question what one is measuring and how this measurement is relevant to the variables being scrutinized. For instance, if a man is neat in appearance, diligent in the quality of his work, and prompt, one might describe the individual as proficient. However if he is diligent about his work and prompt, but deficient in his appearance, he may be described as being dedicated to his job and having time for nothing else, including attention to his personal appearance. In this sense the employee would not be considered inconsistently proficient. It is not natural to impose a trait term like proficient, and then modify it by describing the times that it fails to be uniform. It is more natural and intuitive, yet not particularly empirical, to organize behaviors into rational sets and then to label them (Bem & Allen, 1974). This labeling does not dismiss the biases that intrude upon intuitions (i.e., Barnum statements), but merely points out that predictive qualities, derived by historic research, are not easily found because humans portray inconsistent behaviors. Graphologists interpret writing by using intuition in conjunction with their observations of word and letter formations. The problem is that one cannot measure the successful degree of

A CORRELATIONAL ANALYSIS BETWEEN HANDWRITING 13 one graphologist‘s intuition against another. There is no test to do so, yet much of the anti- graphological literature tries to compare graphologists by indicating how they fail to agree upon interpretations of handwriting. This is why control would better be served by standardizing the way graphologists measure handwriting traits. Additionally, a more useful emphasis may well be on helping subjects become more self-aware rather than predicating their likely behavior e.g., at a job setting. The main reason this author evaluated handwriting quantitatively instead of qualitatively is not to neglect the factor of human intuition, but to develop a useful tool people can use as an aid in self-understanding. This potential tool would not depend upon graphologists‘ intuition; it would depend upon sound research that would satisfy well defined measures of reliability and validity. Another objection the Ben-Shakhar et al., (1986) study mentioned was ―contaminated text‖ (p. 646). This phenomenon is described as a text containing information about the writer which can be used by the graphologist to gain additional reinforcement for her interpretations. Ben-Shakhar et al. therefore, designed two experiments: one had spontaneous autobiographical writing (text containing information about the writer) and the other, had copied text and numbers. The former compared graphologists‘ interpretations with those of graduate students. The researchers found there was no significant difference between either group‘s predictions, although both groups‘ predictive abilities did reach significance when compared with the outcome of psychologists‘ aptitude and personality batteries on the same group of subjects, a significant finding in and of itself. The later experiment looked at copied standard scripts on unlined paper. Five graphologists were asked to predict what professions each writer was associated with. The participants were included within the following occupational groups:

A CORRELATIONAL ANALYSIS BETWEEN HANDWRITING 14 mathematician, clinical psychologist, philosopher, artist, executive, architect, physician, and jurist. None of the five graphologists was able to select the correct vocation at more than the chance level. This outcome leads one to believe that making predictions based upon vocation is not something that can be measured by handwriting analysis. These two experiments did not bring handwriting down to an elemental level. They were not designed to investigate whether certain aspects of handwriting fall into patterns, and if so, what this phenomenon might mean. Another researcher, (Honey, 1992), was interested in examining pre-employment honesty testing. This individual noted that polygraph testing was outlawed in 1981 in the United States as a means to determine how honest candidates for jobs were. As a consequence, other means were both needed and wanted by employers to screen for problematic employees who might steal from their companies. Honey speculated that graphology became more popular after the dismissal of the polygraph, as an affordable means to screen applicant integrity. Although these researchers failed to go into detail, they surmised that graphological results were subject to similar pitfalls as the polygraph, namely, the lack of reliability and validity. Based upon this lack, likely erroneous predictive use of graphology for hiring employees seemed to be in use. Greasley (2000), a European researcher, tried to answer this question by examining the history of graphology. The founder of the Society of Graphology in Paris in 1871 was Jean- Hippolyte Michon. He was a French abbot who compared the handwriting of people he knew well in order to assign personality characteristics to their script. Eventually, according to Greasley, Michon compiled approximately 100 graphological features, like the way one crosses the letter t or dots the letter i, which he associated with certain personality traits. This research continued with Michon‘s student, Jean Crepieux-Jamin, who found another 100 personality-trait associations. The original research was methodical and empirical until Dr. Ludwig Klages, a

A CORRELATIONAL ANALYSIS BETWEEN HANDWRITING 15 German graphologist (Greasley, 2000), began using a more intuitive and theoretical means of expressive behavior in his approach to graphology. According to Greasley‘s research, Lewison Graumann, who adopted Klages‘ approach, considered graphology to be based in analogy, symbolism, and metaphor. Symbolically, McNichol and Nelson (1991) had designated extroverted writing as large writing with more flare in the letter formations, bolder loops, and a large letter I to denote expansiveness, while introverted writers use lighter pressure, smaller script, and a smaller letter i, especially in signatures. McNichol is a handwriting expert who consults with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the U.S. Department of Justice, Scotland Yard, and other institutions, so she is considered an authority on handwriting interpretation. Greasley‘s (2000) findings are congruent with McNichol‘s and Nelson‘s symbolic explanations. He further deduced that ―. . . the whole idea turns out to be founded upon a symbolic code reflected in our use of everyday metaphors‖ (47). Greasley reported that up to 85% of European companies use graphology in their hiring practices, while only 10% of American firms do so. He added that ―the debate about the use and validity of graphology is a regular feature in professional journals‖ (48). This notion was furthered by King & Koehler (2000) when they claimed the persistence of using graphology to predict personality may be based upon the contribution of illusory correlation phenomenon. In their research, a bias was discovered between semantic associations between words used to describe handwriting features and words used to portray personality traits, i.e., when a person writes with a regular rhythm, he is assumed to be conscientious (King & Koehler, 2000). Statement of Problem Thus far, studies have not looked at fundamental aspects of handwriting when investigating any potential personality trait and have therefore not included information

A CORRELATIONAL ANALYSIS BETWEEN HANDWRITING 16 regarding insights handwriting may have about people. Most of the research evaluated has debunked using handwriting as a predictive tool in any form (e.g., King & Koehler, 2000). This present study by contrast is intended to describe and explain this topic through correlational methods and to show that previous research has not exhausted itself. By doing so, the author will contribute a fresh perspective to the current psychological body of knowledge on the likely relationship between personality and graphological analysis. New ideas will be addressed on developing a standardized method for measuring handwriting in a definitive way to improve validity for self-understanding rather than for behavioral predictions. Statement of Purpose The focus of this study is to analyze handwriting samples to see if there are correlations among three salient traits in handwriting and the dimensions on the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) for personality analysis. One of the reasons this typology was chosen is because of its acceptable item-level factorial validity (Zumbo & Taylor, 1993). Factorial validity, according to Gefen and Straus (2005), occurs when each measurement item correlates strongly with the one construct it is related to, while correlating weakly or not significantly with all other constructs. Aside from being a popular and well-studied personality assessment tool, the MBTI additionally measures personality dimensions that handwriting purports to represent, especially introversion and extroversion (McNichol & Nelson, 1991). The MBTI is based upon type theory, which does not make predictions about behavior. This differs from assessments based upon trait theory (see O‘Conner, B. P., 2002; Costa & McCrea, 1992) which are designed to make predictions about behavior (Pearman, 2007). If this research determines a positive correlation on any axis studied, it is hoped this outcome will spur further research in this direction. One possible long-term application includes

A CORRELATIONAL ANALYSIS BETWEEN HANDWRITING 17 developing a screening tool as a means to assist therapy clients, employers, employment applicants, and students in understanding themselves. Self-understanding through handwriting determinants could shed light upon directional aspirations, motivations, and adaptations of therapy goals, or for potential vocations in the workforce. For example, from an employer‘s perspective, identifying introverted people for accountant positions and extroverted people for sales positions could prove valuable. From students‘ or applicants‘ perspectives, self-awareness of temperament and preference could steer them in the right direction toward job selection and satisfaction. From a therapy client‘s perspective, greater self-understanding could help resolve interpersonal issues. Although it may be easier and more reliable to take a pen-and-paper test for personality analysis than to interpret handwriting, some people do not have very accurate self-insight and cannot reliably judge subjective experiences and feelings, nor may they be aware of such internal states such as unconscious thoughts and motivations (Zickar, 2001). A new tool using handwriting would be helpful for people who fall into this category. In developing a hypothesis, it will be determined if there is no relationship between the sixteen personality types from the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, Form M assessment, and three measurements of handwriting: pressure, slant and size; or if there is such a relationship. Assumptions and Limitations To work toward self-understanding, various personality assessments have been developed over time. Although the MBTI is a well-researched personality assessment, it may not be robust enough to capture the many nuances inherent in individual handwriting. By using the results of the MBTI as the standard by which we measure personality type, it may be too broad a tool; however, it does demonstrate well-defined and valid results in the introversion and extroversion

A CORRELATIONAL ANALYSIS BETWEEN HANDWRITING 18 scales (Capraro & Capraro, 2002; Piotrowski & Armstrong, 2002; Psychological Publications Incorporated, 2010; Steele & Kelly, 1976; Zumbo & Taylor, 1993), so it appears the best tool to use for this study. The main limitation of using the MBTI is the same as in any self-report tool. If the respondent does not answer the questions does not answer them accurately or honestly, this will render the results useless. It is one consolation many of the people invited to participate in this study seemed genuinely interested and were happy to be involved. It was assumed their results, collectively, would provide accurate and reliable data. The number of participants in this study was designed to be between 80 and 100, all from Denver, Colorado, and vicinity; therefore, the results cannot be generalized to the entire population of the United States or to the world. This limitation does not pose a particular problem overall, because the main reason for this study is to determine whether further research is warranted. Participation was limited to right-handed individuals between the ages of 25 to 55. The lower limit was chosen upon Longstaff and Heath (1999), who found that handwriting, does not become automatic until around age 20 and above. This criterion range was set to exclude possible variables found in both adolescents and people of advanced years. These variables were issues characterized by immature writing or writing influenced by heavy medication use on the part of older individuals. Given the age-range restriction and handedness criteria, the results cannot be generalized to the population of people who have been excluded.

A CORRELATIONAL ANALYSIS BETWEEN HANDWRITING 19 Review of Literature Graphology The history of graphology. One of the earliest accounts of graphology is by Camillo Baldi. According to Nickell (2005), Camillo Baldi, who was a 17th-Century Italian physician, published a treatise relating personality with handwriting in 1622. It was called ―Trattado come da una lettera missi va si conoscano la natura e qualita dello scriviente” (p. 18), which, in translation, means, ―Treatise on Methods to Recognize the Character and Quality of a Writer by His Letters‖. Although Baldi‘s work incited little interest, a group of Catholic clergymen in 1830 began studying and interpreting handwriting in France (Nickell, 2005). Graphology has been studied by some eminent psychologists and serious researchers throughout the historic development of professional psychology. Some of the individuals who showed an interest in handwriting include Alfred Binet (Binet, 1904); Jean Piaget (Seifer, 2009); and, indirectly, Carl Jung, through Ania Teillard who ―. . . introduced Jung's psychic function types into graphology: thinking, feeling, sensation and intuition‖ (Bernard & Reed, 1985, p. 5). There are three ways of looking at graphology. First is the trait method developed by the French abbot, Michon (1806-1881), wherein the interpretations rely on finding a subject‘s personal characteristics by looking at each letter and word formation individually. Second is the holistic method developed by the German Ludwig Klages (1872-1976), wherein the whole script is interpreted by looking at its Form Level (Karoh, 1964), which will be discussed later. Third, the Swiss Psychologist Max Pulver (1889-1952) introduced the use of symbolism as a tool for handwriting interpretation. This approach integrated elements from both Klages and Michon and the principles of psychodynamics.

A CORRELATIONAL ANALYSIS BETWEEN HANDWRITING 20 Of the three fundamental approaches to handwriting analysis in the history of graphology, the French Catholic abbot Jean-Hippolyte Michon developed the first systematic basis of matching character traits with elements of a person‘s handwriting. He died in 1881, but he coined the term graphology ten years before his death (Nickell, 2005). According to the London College of Graphology (2009), Abbé Flandrin and other clergymen preceded Michon in researching the interpretation of handwriting, but Michon was the one who was most instrumental in the analysis of handwriting traits, as he assigned various meanings to individual script characteristics by utilizing minute details in the process. Additionally, Michon founded the Société Francaise de Graphologie, which still publishes quarterly journals called ―SFDG‖ (London College of Graphology, 2009, para. 3). It was Michon‘s work that set the first standard for making systematic associations between isolated elements and character traits. These elements, which he called ―signs‖ (Nickell, 2005, p.18), are represented, for example, by the way one dots his i’s or crosses her t’s, for example. Jean Crépieux-Jamin, Michon‘s student, was responsible for the reclassification of his teacher‘s work (Greasley, 2000), and the London College of Graphology (2009) recognizes Crépieux-Jamin‘s ten volumes on the subject. He was responsible for incorporating 50 years of research and for providing a fundamental basis for graphology. According to Teillard (1974), who was influenced by Carl Jung‘s analytical psychology, Jean Crépieux-Jamin not only began the notion that handwriting needed to be viewed as a unified whole, rather than by individual letters, but he additionally created seven large categories for the convenience of observation. These seven categories are speed, pressure, size, direction, form, continuity, and order. His approach was a wide deviation from Michon‘s ideas (Saudek, 1926) of personality trait analysis.

A CORRELATIONAL ANALYSIS BETWEEN HANDWRITING 21 Crépieux-Jamin opened the door for the next development in the field, likewise based upon a more holistic approach. Next, the locus of activity moved to Germany. According to Nickell (2005), William Thierry Preyer, a German doctor, coined the term ―brain writing‖ in 1895. He linked the actual movements in writing with mental processes. Georg Meyer, a German psychiatrist, thought that emotion was expressed through all psychomotor functions, including handwriting (Nickel, 2005). It was Ludwig Klages who devised an expanded version of graphology when he introduced the concept of Form Level (Karoh, 1964). Form Level is Klages‘ classification system for denoting handwriting as having either a positive or negative in polarity in six divisions ranging from high to low in a person‘s script. Klages examined at the uniqueness of a person‘s writing, or the Gestalt, first; then he looked at the rhythm and spacing in terms of his classification process. Scripts with higher Form Levels were interpreted by Klages as those that expressed good rhythm and had harmonious features with clarity and originality, while lower Form Levels were classified as conventional forms, such as those learned in school (Karoh, 1964). Additionally, Seifer (2009) linked higher Form Levels of handwriting to a more highly developed brain. Seifer (2009) described a highly developed brain as one that is well-coordinated and integrated with interplay between ―. . . (1) the cerebral cortex; (2) the thalamus, hypothalamus, and limbic system; (3) the basal ganglia and brainstem; (4) the cerebellum; and (5) the spinal cord, which send the impulses out to the hands and fingers‖ (p. 189). While the integration of the brain is paramount in the production of writing, its initiation occurs in the frontal lobes, where higher reasoning and intentional activities take place. When the frontal lobes are not functioning correctly, impairments trickle down through the brain, and the resultant handwriting has a lower

A CORRELATIONAL ANALYSIS BETWEEN HANDWRITING 22 form. Research at Stanford University (Canli, et.al, 2002) links the functions of the brain, particularly the amydgala, with extroversion. This research further suggests that people respond to something that is potentially pleasant in very different ways because personalities are not the same between individuals. For instance, when looking at unpleasant or threatening faces, the same area of the amydgala lit up in both introverts and extroverts; however, happy faces had more response in the amygdalae of extroverts than introverts (Canli, et.al, 2002). Next, the first historical figure to apply psychoanalysis to graphology was Max Pulver, a Swiss psychoanalyst. According to the London College of Graphology (2009), he introduced symbolism into the interpretation of handwriting in his 1931 book called Symbolik der Handschrift (Symbolism in Handwriting). Seifer (2009) credits Pulver with emphasizing the various zones of handwriting, e.g., the lower zone (below the baseline) relating to sexuality and orientation, fantasy life, materialism, and narcissistic proclivities. Computer research and handwriting. In recent times computer research has definitively addressed the reliability of matching handwriting to the writer. For instance, Srihari, et al. (2002) researched pattern recognition. Their study shows that individual writers can be recognized by their script. This idea is also supported by other researchers like Ramsay (2000), who identifies handwriting as the result of a mechanical process which has derivatives. He further related a differential equation to handwriting in describing its processes by finding relationships among derivatives. A derivative is a measure of how a function changes as its input changes. He graphed a mathematical model to approximate the smoothness of subjects‘ handwriting, which results from neural events as they vary in timing and amplitude when they travel along transmission pathways from cortical areas in the brain. These two studies suggest that each person‘s writing can tell the analyst something about that individual that is unique to

A CORRELATIONAL ANALYSIS BETWEEN HANDWRITING 23 him or her. As shown through mathematics and computer applications, handwriting is about individuality and shared patterns (Ramsay, J.O., 2000; Srihari, et al., 2002). Luria and Rosenblum (2009) studied handwriting with an instrument called the Computerized Penmanship Evaluation Tool (ComPET), which measures the pause time when the pen is not in contact with the writing surface as well as the velocity and acceleration, space, and pressure of the pen on the paper as described by Kanon (2007). In their study Luria and Rosenblum found that in a false writing condition (one where an individual writes something that is not true) the mean pressure stroke length and height as well as the standard deviations of stroke heights are all significantly different from a true writing condition (2009). Based upon Luria and Rosenblum‘s study, there is variation between true and false writing conditions, which indicates that some information derived from handwriting can be applied to practical situations, i.e., the integrity of the written word. Predictive handwriting. Behavioral predictability from handwriting has not been substantiated in research studies (Ben-Shakhar, Bilu, Ben-Abba & Flug, 1986; Bowman, 1992; Jansen, 1973; King & Koehler, 2000), mainly because people are not always going to react the same way in every situation (Bem & Allen, 1974). The research reviewed did not indicate any positive substantive correlates for using handwriting to predict likely behaviors, e.g., employee theft. Thomas and Vaught (2001) made a salient observation about the validity of handwriting as a predictive tool in hiring practices. Their statement, which follows, may be generalized to other areas. Selection validity is not something inherent in the device, it involves the relationship between the selection device and some other measure or attribute.

Full document contains 87 pages
Abstract: A quantitative study was conducted with 82 right-handed individuals to understand the relationship between handwriting and personality. Three measurements of handwriting--slant, size, and pressure--were compared with results of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), Form M assessment. The participants were at least 25 years old, but under 56 years old. Correlational analyses were used to verify relationships among the three measures of handwriting, and any of the dichotomous scales inherent in the MBTI: Extroversion/Introversion, Sensing/Intuition, Thinking/Feeling, and Judging/Perceiving. No significant relationships were found; therefore, the null hypothesis was retained. Keywords : MBTI, Form M, personality, right-handed, handwriting, slant, size, pressure