Handwriting interpretation consistent – but still wrong

Earlier in the month I reported that graphology, or handwriting analysis, has zero validity. Despite this, some businesses continue to use it in personnel selection.

Raj Persaud, writing in The Guardian, takes this point a little further by explaining why graphology proves so attractive to the popular consciousness. According to a new study, even those untrained in graphology tend to interpret people’s handwriting in a consistent fashion. For example if you have untidy handwriting most people, on this evidence alone, would tend to characterise you as depressed. Simply because our interpretation is consistent, we have a tendency to think ‘there might be something in it’. But there isn’t anything in it at all.

Persaud compares graphology to phrenology – the Victorian obsession of analysing personality from the bumps on your head.
→ From The Guardian

About the author

Dr Jeremy Dean is a psychologist and the author of PsyBlog. His latest book is "Making Habits, Breaking Habits: How to Make Changes That Stick". You can follow PsyBlog by email, by RSS feed, on Twitter and Google+.

Published: 12 February 2005

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