Senior Psychology Research Project
Saint Anselm College
Children's Freehand and Computer Generated Drawings:
Creativity, Realism, and Preference
This study investigated for creativity, realism, and preference
differences in freehand versus computer generated drawings. Seventeen
children in kindergarten/first and third/fourth grades were recruited to
draw the pictures. Nine judges scored the drawings on creativity,
defined by the consensual assessment technique (Amablie, 1982), and realism,
defined as "how accurately this picture represents real life". Overall
the older group scored significantly higher on creativity and realism.
Also, the children preferred their freehand drawing to their computer drawing.
Results do not support the theory that one drawing medium is better than
another. The children's preference for their freehand drawing may
indicate a need for children to be provided with traditional drawing tools
to foster their development. Their response for having more fun drawing
with the computer may be because of the software's uniqueness. Future
research may want to look at the effect computers have on children's drawing
abilities and preferences.
Eight kindergarten/first grade children and nine third/fourth
grade students were recruited for this study. Visits to each child's
home were made. Using Crayola
drawing supplies each child created one freehand drawing and one computer
generated drawing. The children were asked their preferences for
the two drawings. Then the drawings were scored by nine judges on
creativity and realism.
children reported that they prefered their own freehand drawing to their
computer generated drawing. However, when asked which drawing they
had more fun creating the children reported having more fun creating the
computer generated drawing.
grade children were scored as being higher in creativity than the kindergarten/first
grade children. No significant differences were found between the
two types of drawings.
graders also scored significantly higher on realism than the kindergarten/first
graders. No significant differences were found between the two different
types of drawings.
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