The term psychogram was coined by Leta Stetter Hollingworth in 1922 and now refers, in general, to any chart on which personality traits are marked according to a guiding psychological viewpoint. Such a profile, showing the quantitative relation between the magnitudes of all the traits concerned, has closer kinship with the whole personality than have any of the separate factors.
As a psychological "map", the contribution of several different factors to the personality as a whole can be more easily understood. With this chart, the same group of personality traits can be measured in a number of different persons, classifying different types of profile rather than analyzing the participant traits.
In graphology, it refers to a specific system of handwriting analysis that falls within the approach of Holistic Graphology.
In graphology, this system of handwriting analysis was developed by Klara G. Roman, during her tenure [1946-1961] at the New School for Social Research.
In 1961, when Daniel S. Anthony took over Klara Roman's position at the New School for Social Research, he made some minor changes to the system and published a monograph on the technique.
From 1957 to 1987, Charlie Cole taught this system, through Handwriting Analysis Workshop Unlimited. The most significant change he made, was the addition of traits from graphoanalysis, as supplementary factors to be used when writing the report.
Over time, the basic chart has been augmented by other charts, designed for specific functions.
The validity of this system is based upon a number of studies published by Klara Roman, on specific aspects of handwriting analysis.
There have been no comprehensive published studies of the validity or reliability of this system. There have been reliability studies, that included this system as one of the systems being investigated. These studies were published in graphology journals, that do not practice peer review.
There have been no published studies from which one can derive either the frequency, or intensity of any factor, in the general population.
There are a number of anecdotal stories about the validity of this system. One factor that might affect the perceived validity of this system, is that reports are often accompanied by a copy of the Psychogram used to write the report.
Forty factors, scored from 0 to 10, are evaluated. Between two and five dataponts are evaluated, to score each factor. For example, "rhythm" is scored on the basis of the following datapoints:
The congruency of each datapoint, to the copy book, determines the score.
Each factor falls into one of the following groups:
- Simplification of Form;
- Upper Zone Elaboration;
- Upper Zone Height;
- Upper Zone Dynamics;
- "I" emphasis;
- Middle Zone Height;
- Word Directedness;
- Flexibility / Fluency;
- Rightward Trend;
- Horizontal Expansion;
- Left Margin;
- Rightward Slant;
- Emotional Release;
- Irregular Fluctuation;
- Lower Zone Length;
- Lower Zone Elaboration;
- Concealed Strokes;
- Right Margin;
- Leftward Slant;
- Leftward Trend;
- Word Spacing;
- Alignment Control;
All of these terms have a specific, technical definition.
Different instructors have normed the Psychogram for different copybooks.
- The American Copybook (Klara Roman);
- Zaner-Blosser (Ellen Bowers);
- Palmer Script (Charlie Cole);
Normed in this instance means that they have modified the scoring protocol, to correlate with the specific copybook.
The basic chart is orientated towards reports for individuals. Whilst useful for other purposes, modified charts can be more functional.
Charlie Cole created additional charts to be used for:
- Personnel Evaluations;
- Self Worth;
These involve scoring additional factors, such as Intelligence, Economic Motivation, Maturity, and Communication. For the most part, these are composite scores derived from Graphoanalysis.
The only organization that currently offers training in this system of handwriting analysis is Graphex.
This was last taught as part of the Graphology Track leading to an Associate Arts Degree from Felician College, in Lodi, NJ, in 2000. This is the only accredited educational institution in the United States to have offered graphology for an academic degree.
It used to be taught at New School for Social Research, in New York City, as part of their diploma in Graphology. At its peak, the diploma course took 8 semesters, and also included Forensic Document Analysis. This institution is accredited, but the diploma was not part of a formal degree program. The diploma course was last offered c. 1995.
Personal Worth Chart
This was developed by Handwriting Consultants of San Diego, between 1975 and 1985. The most significant difference is that each section has five factors.
The Personal Evaluation Chart is a modified form of the Psychogram It consists of the following factors, with each factor containing ten datapoints:
- Emotional Independence;
- Social Maturity;
- Communication Skills;
- Physical Vitality;
The Job Placement Evaluation Chart is the modification of the Personal Evaluation Chart that is used for employment related purposes. Eleven basic areas are looked at. Each area consists of five factors. Each factor is scored on the basis of between five and ten different datapoints.
- Emotional Stability;
- Perseverance and Resilience;
- Originality and Creativity;
- Human Relations;
- Controlled Initiative;
- Physical and Psychic Energy;
This was developed by Leslie King, between 1970 and 1979. The most visible difference is the names of the factors:
- Functional Ability;
- Mental Capabilities;
- Self Concept;
- Interpersonal Relationships;
- Areas of Vulnerability;
- Hindrances To Success;
- Defense Systems;
Ms King constantly changed both the datapoints, and method of scoring them, to correspond with what her research validated. This resulted in different sets of students being taught different ways of evaluating the same datapoint. It also resulted in some datapoints being dropped, in favor of others. Despite the empirical basis that this system has, it is doomed to being nothing more than footnote in history, for the simple reason that upon her death, her heirs destroyed all of her material related to handwriting analysis.
- Anthony, Daniel S., The Graphological Psychogram: Psychological meanings of its Sectors; Symbolic Interpretation of its Graphic Indicators, Fort Lauderdale, FL; New York NY: 1964; rev. ed. 1983.
- Cole, Charlie, The Psychogram Course, Handwriting Analysis Workshop Unlimited: Campbell CA: 1961-1968
- King, Leslie, Measurement Gauge, Handwriting Consultants of Utah: Bountiful, UT: 1979.
- Sassi, Paula & Eldene Whiting, The Personal Worth Chart: Intermediate Course Handwriting Consultants of San Diego: San Diego, CA: 1983