chapter  3
26 Pages

The Discrimination of Handwriting

ByHeidi H. Harralson, Larry S. Miller

Handwriting identification is a discriminatory process that derives from the comparison of writing habits, and an evaluation of the significance of their similarities or differences. The evaluation of the significance of the similarities or differences observed in the comparison is, however, a matter peculiar to the particular discipline. It is the product of proper training and experience. There are four instructional methods that have been employed either discretely or in combination to develop and train handwriting examiners: self-instruction, correspondence courses, apprenticeship programs, and university courses. In the pursuit of a reasonable explanation for the existence of an apparent difference in the comparison of questioned and known writings, the first consideration must be given to the adequacy of the standards to ensure that the full range of variations of which the writer is capable is represented. Handwriting examinations usually have one of three objectives: identification, elimination, or differentiation.