ERIC Number: EJ767806
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2007-Aug
Reference Count: 39
The Sentence Completion and Three Wishes Tasks: Windows into the Inner Lives of People with Intellectual Disabilities
Dykens, E.; Schwenk, K.; Maxwell, M.; Myatt, B.
Journal of Intellectual Disability Research, v51 n8 p588-597 Aug 2007
Background: Measuring the self-perceptions, thoughts, hopes and inner lives of persons with intellectual disabilities (ID) has long been a research challenge. Unlike objective or projective tests, semi-projective tasks may provide persons with ID with just enough structure or cues to convey their self-perceptions in a spontaneous and unbiased manner. Methods: Sentence Completion and Three Wishes tasks were individually administered to 128 persons with ID aged 5-50 years (mean = 18.75 years). Participants had Prader-Willi, Williams or Down syndromes. Content analyses resulted in 19 codes that were used to reliably score both tasks by independent raters who achieved excellent levels of inter-rater agreement. Participants also received IQ testing, and their parents or care providers completed the Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL). Results: Frequent themes across both tasks included activities, positive affect, desired objects, and relationships with family and pets. No gender or IQ effects were found, and just a few codes showed modest age effects. Several responses, including dating, friends, food, and positive or negative self-appraisals, were significantly related to either syndrome status or CBCL maladaptive behaviour. Conclusions: Although not widely used, the Sentence Completion and Three Wishes tasks are useful semi-projective techniques for garnering otherwise hard-to-access self-perceptions and associations of people with ID. Implications are discussed for practice and research.
Descriptors: Cues, Check Lists, Sentences, Intelligence Quotient, Mental Retardation, Self Concept, Task Analysis, Down Syndrome, Content Analysis, Intelligence Tests, Family Relationship, Animals, Interpersonal Relationship, Friendship, Food, Evaluation Methods
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: Child Behavior Checklist