Photography, Children and Self-Esteem: The Murfreesboro Study
There was a revealing study conducted in 1975 with a group of fourth graders at a Murfreesboro, Tenn. school. The study was conducted by Jerry Fryrear of Tulane University and Mary Ammerman with Murfreesboro City Schools.
What The Study Discovered
The children were selected from a set of test results indicating they had self-esteem scores below the median score of all the fourth-grade students. These chosen students participated in a carefully set-up study over the course of five-weeks.
During those five weeks, the children took polaroid instant photos of themselves with provided cameras in a variety of assigned poses, compositions and expressing various emotions. The children worked with the printed images of themselves and created scrapbooks once a week over those five weeks.
Testing of the students and teachers at the conclusion of the five weeks revealed a significant increase of 37 percent in the students’ average self-esteem behaviors as seen by their teachers versus a control group which showed just a 10 percent increase on those same scores.
Here is the link to the study: