Graduate Research Papers


Open Access Graduate Research Paper


Perfectionism (Personality trait); Caricatures and cartoons--Therapeutic use; Bibliotherapy for children; Child psychotherapy;


Many students, especially high achievers, develop perfectionist tendencies during early childhood. It is important to teach students early to manage their perfectionism to avoid many negative consequences of neurotic perfectionism such as depression, anxiety, eating disorders, procrastination , or underachievement, and to avoid entrenchment of behaviors. Traditionally, bibliotherapy and role-play have been used to help students recognize perfectionistic traits and learn strategies for ameliorating negative effects. But cartoon analysis is another potentially useful approach.

This pretest-posttest control group - experimental group design study of first, second and third graders (n = 46) compared concept acquisition and enjoyment of learning about perfectionism under two conditions: bibliotherapy and role-play (control ) compared to analysis and construction of cartoons (experimental ). Posttest results showed students learned significantly more content in the experimental condition with a medium effect size. Teacher observations showed that students were more engaged in the cartoon condition, appreciating the humor of the cartoons and the opportunity to apply their learning in making their own cartoons. In contrast, although most students reported liking the bibliotherapy, some complained of boredom or apathy. The researchers recommend that both bibliotherapy and cartoon analysis be used in lessons about perfectionism to maintain student interest and comprehension of the comments.

Year of Submission


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Education


Department of Curriculum and Instruction

First Advisor

Audrey C. Rule


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Date Original


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