University of the Basque Country, Spain
Emotional and cognitive assessment using graphic techniques

Montserrat Hernandez Peris. She is a clinical psychologist. She is a Professor at the Faculty of Psychology at the University of the Basque Country. She obtained her Master in Family and Couple Psychotherapy endorsed by the "Spanish Federation of Psychotherapy" (FEAP). She has collaborated on various research projects. Among her publications are: Body Esteem, virtual publications and sexuality in adolescents; Corporeality of adolescents in social networks; Addiction, sextortion, harassment through sexting in the social networks and pedophile factors like grooming. She has taught several conferences and courses in professional forums at both, socio-clinical and educative level, especially on children's drawings in the diagnosis, prevention and intervention on risk factors in the social networks. 

The drawing is a natural behavior in the child through which he/she expresses his/her cognitions, emotions, concerns and interests. Graphic techniques have been universally used in both diagnosis and treatment of children and adolescents. However, they have sometimes lacked methodological rigor for lack of psychometric studies supporting them. The aim of this symposium is to show different aspects of graphic techniques as a means of assessment in childhood. Specifically, we expose the Two Human Figures Test (T2F), which has been used in a rigorous study with a large and representative sample of children aged 5 to 12 years, giving its psychometric properties - reliability and validity -, which will be exposed in order to understand the technique of evaluation in-depth. Next, we will present the analysis of the drawings in the development of child evolutionary graphics, and expose the significance of evolutionary changes to understand the graphic expression. In addition, through clinical cases, we will analyze drawings to define the differential criteria between mental and emotional maturational evaluation. Some features of the drawing are significantly more expressive of emotional problems, forcing us to be cautious in mental maturational evaluation. Others, on the contrary, present indicators of cognitive difficulties, and in these cases the emotional assessment should be extended from other complementary instruments. The last communication clarifies clinical features with high incidence in childhood: depression, obsessive behaviors and situations of cognitive and emotional confusion by presenting case studies that addresses these issues. This symposium offers a wide and didactic perspective to work in clinical, educational and social issues with children with both cognitive and emotional problems.