Publication Details

Jones, S. C., McVie, D. & Noble, G. I. (2008). You are what your children eat: using projective techniques to investigate parents'' perceptions of the food choices parents make for their children. The Open Communication Journal, 2 (March), 23-28.

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The aim of this study was to investigate the underlying reasons for parents' decisions about their children's diets. This study used the projective methodologies of picture response and third-person techniques (projective questioning), which are designed to elicit people's underlying motivations, beliefs, attitudes and concerns, particularly those beliefs which people find hard to articulate. We found a significant difference in parents' perceptions of the woman in the scenario in response to all four of the statements that related directly to food choices. This study provides support for the contention that parents reports of their intentions and behaviours regarding food choices for their children are associated with their perceptions of value judgments associated with these behaviours. It appears the use of projective methodologies have promise as tools for investigating subconscious, or at least not readily communicated, reasons for parents' food choices for their children.