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Thematic Apperception Test

  1. Hedwig Teglasi

Published Online: 30 JAN 2010

DOI: 10.1002/9780470479216.corpsy0990

Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology

Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology

How to Cite

Teglasi, H. 2010. Thematic Apperception Test. Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology. 1–3.

Author Information

  1. University of Maryland

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 30 JAN 2010


The Thematic Apperception Test (TAT) is a set of pictures and standard instructions for telling stories about them, but methods of analyzing these stories vary widely. Although Murray (1938) introduced the TAT in the context of a particular theory of personality, the technique did not become wedded to the theory from which it sprang. The TAT pictures and instructions are commercially available (see Murray, 1943) and remain in common use, although Murray's interpretive system is not, having been supplanted by a plethora of analytic methods for clinical use and for the study of personality. In line with its original intent, the TAT continues to be valued for revealing aspects of the personality that are outside of conscious awareness.


  • personality tests;
  • projective techniques;
  • thematic apperception test