Exploring the Dreams of Canadian Soldiers with Content Analysis

  • Allyson Lindsay Dale (Author)
    University of Ottawa
    Allyson Dale, PhD (Candid.) is in the Experimental Psychology program in the School of Psychology at the University of Ottawa, Canada.
  • Teresa L DeCicco (Author)
    Trent University
    Teresa L. DeCicco is an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychology at Trent University, Canada. She studies dreams in relation to health, mental illness and self-psychology at the Trent University Dream Science Lab with undergraduate and graduate students.
  • Nicolle J Miller (Author)
    Trent University
    Nicolle J. Miller is a MA Candidate, studying Health Psychology at Trent University, Canada.

Identifiers (Article)


The current study extended previous research on the dreams of Canadian males to the dreams of Canadian male soldiers. Participants included 25 Canadian male soldiers with operational experience in Afghanistan as well as an age and gender matched control group of 25 Canadian male civilians. Dream reports were scored using the Hall and Van de Castle (1966) content analysis guidelines. In addition, emotional intensity as well as intensity of aggression was rated by two independent judges. There were many significant relationships among content categories for soldiers. Also, many significant differences were found between soldiers and civilians when examining dream content. Both groups had dream imagery that supports the continuity hypothesis in relevant and meaningful ways. As expected, soldiers had more dream imagery relating to war and their experiences overseas compared to civilians. Time spent overseas was significantly related to certain dream imagery for soldiers. Limitations and directions for future research with soldiers are discussed.


Contributor or sponsoring agency
Co-authors, Dr. Teresa DeCicco and Nicole Miller, MA (Candid.), Trent University, Department of Psychology
soldiers, content analysis, males
How to Cite
Dale, A. L., DeCicco, T. L., & Miller, N. J. (2013). Exploring the Dreams of Canadian Soldiers with Content Analysis. International Journal of Dream Research, 6(1), 22–30. https://doi.org/10.11588/ijodr.2013.1.9427