Evidence of a Flynn Effect in Children's Human Figure Drawings (1902-1968)

J Genet Psychol. 2018 Jul-Aug;179(4):176-182. doi: 10.1080/00221325.2018.1469113. Epub 2018 May 25.


The Flynn effect is the long-term trend for scores on tests of cognitive ability to increase across cohorts. Several samples of children's human figure drawings, published in 1902, 1926, 1963, and 1968, are examined for evidence of a Flynn effect. Results show that larger percentages of children draw more complete human figures over the course of the 20th century.

Keywords: Draw-a-Person test; Flynn effect; children's drawings; history of Psychology.

MeSH terms

  • Aptitude / physiology*
  • Child
  • Child Development / physiology*
  • Human Body*
  • Humans
  • Psychometrics*
  • Psychomotor Performance / physiology*