The Self Representation in Schizophrenic patients: Considerations on the Draw a Tree Test

Salvatore Settineri, Irene Pagano Dritto, Vanessa Morabito, Carmela Mento




Objective: The tree is the archetypal symbol of the identification in the growing life. The objective of this study is to evaluate the representation of the self in schizophrenic patients through the tree drawing.

Methods: Were identified 36 patients, 22 women and 14 (M-age=53), suffering from schizophrenic disorder. Through the Scale for the Assessment of Negative Symptoms (SANS) and the Scale for the Assessment of Positive Symptoms (SAPS) positive and negative symptoms, and the reactive tree representation of the self were assessed.


Results: In the group with negative symptoms archetypal figures are more frequent, such as images that are part of the collective unconscious, or thought more archaic. In patients in which emerges the delirium, that is part of the most evolved thinking, near to the secondary process, the reality testing is better preserved. In cases where there are symptoms mixed the tree structure leads to an archetypal image.

Conclusions: This study shows that in the draw of the tree trunk-to-crown ratio in schizophrenic patients was significantly higher than that of healthy individuals. The usefulness of the study insert itself in the Jungian analytic thought, for which psychotic thought corresponds to an abbaissement of the self activity.


Keyword: Representation of Self; Schizophrenia; Draw a Tree Test.


Representation of Self; Schizophrenia; Draw a Tree Test

Full Text:

Self representation


  1. Averbeck, B. B., Evans, S., Chouhan, V., Bristow, E., & Shergill, S. S. (2011). Probabilistic learning and inference in schizophrenia. Schizophrenia research, 127(1), 115-122.
  2. Bernet A. (1971). “Recherhes sur le test de l’abre”, rev. de Psychol. Appl., 21, 2, 101-122.
  3. Healey, K. M., Pinkham, A. E., Richard, J. A., & Kohler, C. G. (2010). Do we recognize facial expressions of emotions from persons with schizophrenia?. Schizophrenia research, 122(1), 144-150.
  4. Hur, J. W., Kwon, J. S., Lee, T. Y., & Park, S. (2014). The crisis of minimal self-awareness in schizophrenia: A meta-analytic review. Schizophrenia research, 152(1), 58-64.
  5. Ichitani T, Hayashi K, Kuniyoshi M et al. A study of lifespan developmental tendency by Koch’s baumtest (treedrawing test) [I]. Bull. Kyoto Univ. Educ. Soc. Sci. Literature Arts Series A 1986; 69: 53–68 (in Japanese).
  6. Inadomi H, Morita K, Haramura K et al. Evaluation of occupational therapy: Analysis of time-dependent changes in the Baum test. Sagyo Ryoho 1996; 15: 351–357 (in Japanese).
  7. Inadomi H, Morita K, Inoue H et al. Comparison of oncedaily and twice-daily long-term occupational therapy in schizophrenic patients: Additional analysis with the Baum test. Sagyo Ryoho 1998; 17 : 133–142 (in Japanese).
  8. Inadomi, H., Tanaka, G., & Ohta, Y. (2003). Characteristics of trees drawn by patients with paranoid schizophrenia. Psychiatry and clinical neurosciences, 57(4), 347-351.
  9. Jung C.G. (1945). Der philosophische Baum. Bollati Boringhieri 2012.
  10. Jung C.G. (1939). Psicogenesi della schizofrenia. Bollati Boringhieri, Torino, Opere, Vol. 3, 1999.
  11. Koch K. (1949), Der Baumtest, Hans Huber, Bern ( O.S., Firenze, 1959).
  12. Koch K. The Tree Test: The Tree Drawing Test as an Aid in Psychodiagnosis. Verlag Hans Huber, Bern, 1952. (Hayashi K, Kuniyoshi M, Ichitani T. Baum Test: Jumokuga ni yoru Jinkaku- Shindanho. Nihon Bunka- Kagakusha, Tokyo, 1970 [Japanese edition]).
  13. Konstantakopoulos, G., Ploumpidis, D., Oulis, P., Patrikelis, P., Soumani, A., Papadimitriou, G. N., & Politis, A. M. (2011). Apathy, cognitive deficits and functional impairment in schizophrenia. Schizophrenia research, 133(1), 193-198.
  14. Konstantakopoulos, G., Ploumpidis, D., Oulis, P., Patrikelis, P., Nikitopoulou, S., Papadimitriou, G. N., & David, A. S. (2014). The relationship between insight and theory of mind in schizophrenia. Schizophrenia research, 152(1), 217-222.
  15. Leung, W. W., Couture, S. M., Blanchard, J. J., Lin, S., & Llerena, K. (2010). Is social anhedonia related to emotional responsivity and expressivity? A laboratory study in women. Schizophrenia research, 124(1), 66-73.
  16. Mirian, D., Heinrichs, R. W., & Vaz, S. M. (2011). Exploring logical reasoning abilities in schizophrenia patients. Schizophrenia research, 127(1), 178-180.
  17. Nelson, B., Whitford, T. J., Lavoie, S., & Sass, L. A. (2014). What are the neurocognitive correlates of basic self-disturbance in schizophrenia?: Integrating phenomenology and neurocognition. Part 1 (Source monitoring deficits). Schizophrenia research, 152(1), 12-19.
  18. Nelson, B., Whitford, T. J., Lavoie, S., & Sass, L. A. (2014). What are the neurocognitive correlates of basic self-disturbance in schizophrenia?: Integrating phenomenology and neurocognition: Part 2 (Aberrant salience). Schizophrenia research, 152(1), 20-27.
  19. Oorschot, M., Lataster, T., Thewissen, V., Bentall, R., Delespaul, P., & Myin-Germeys, I. (2012). Temporal dynamics of visual and auditory hallucinations in psychosis. Schizophrenia research, 140(1), 77-82.
  20. Postmes, L., Sno, H. N., Goedhart, S., van der Stel, J., Heering, H. D., & de Haan, L. (2014). Schizophrenia as a self-disorder due to perceptual incoherence. Schizophrenia research, 152(1), 41-50.
  21. Saito M, Owada T. A study on the tree test (Der Baumtest) in schizophrenics. Matsushita Bull. Hum. Sci. 1969; 8: 83–92 (in Japanese).
  22. Stora R. (1948). “L’abre de Koch”, Enfance, 4, 327-344.
  23. Stora R. (1954). “Le test d’abres” Bull. Psychol. Scol., 3.
  24. Stora R. (1955). “ Etude de personnalitè et de psychologie differentielle à l’aide du test d’abres”, Enfance, nov-dic.
  25. Stora R. (1963). “ Le test du dessin de l’abre: pricipales mèthodes”, Bull. Psychol., 17, 225.
  26. Ventura, J., Wood, R. C., Jimenez, A. M., & Hellemann, G. S. (2013). Neurocognition and symptoms identify links between facial recognition and emotion processing in schizophrenia: meta-analytic findings. Schizophrenia research, 151(1), 78-84.
  27. Wang, L., Metzak, P. D., & Woodward, T. S. (2011). Aberrant connectivity during self–other source monitoring in schizophrenia. Schizophrenia research, 125(2), 136-142.
  28. Yamanaka Y. A study of Baum test in schizophrenia. J. Psychometry 1976; 12: 18–23 (in Japanese).
  29. Yamashita M. A study of development in Baum test. J. Psychometry 1981; 17: 2–6 (in Japanese).
  30. Zhou, Y., Rosenheck, R., Mohamed, S., Zhang, J., Chang, Q., Ou, Y., ... & He, H. (2015). Insight in inpatients with schizophrenia: Relationship to symptoms and neuropsychological functioning. Schizophrenia research, 161(2), 376-381.



  • There are currently no refbacks.