University of Twente Student Theses


Defining the concept of creativity

Wolf, R.A. (2014) Defining the concept of creativity.

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Abstract:Creativity is an important concept in all aspects of life, because creative people secure progress. However, currently there is a lack of a solid definition of creativity. In the 1950s this was not a big problem, because creativity research was limited to creative personality, and the creative thinking proces. As the 20th century progressed, a splintering of the research field took place, leading to a wide array of definitions of creativity. Because one single definition is necessary for concrete research into a concept, the 21st century had to start with a new analysis of the concept of creativity. A few new models were suggested, but none of these models were based on scientific research. This thesis attempts to define creativity in a scientific manner. This happens by way of three different studies. In the first study, participants were simply asked what they associate with creativity. This, combined with a part of the word list created in a different work by Anna Jordanous, resulted in a list of 80 words. In the second study, a group of different participants was asked to give their associations for each of these 80 words. Every word that was given as an answer in both the first and second study was judged to have a strong association with creativity. This resulted in a list of 42 words. In the third and most important study, a new group of participants was asked to divide the remaining 42 words into groups, or to categorise them. This happened using the card sorting method: Every participant received the 42 words on separate cards, and was then asked to sort these into groups.The reason for the categorisation was intentionally left vague, so that the participants were responsible for labeling the categories they made. In this method, some words were put together quite often, whereas other words were not placed together by any participants. The more often two words were placed together, the stronger the relation between these two words. A Hierarchical Cluster Analysis was then employed to reveal the strengths of all these relations. Based on this, groups of words could be formed. These groups are the most important conclusion of this thesis; the eight components of creativity. To verify the results of the studies, a comparative analysis was done with another method of measuring association strength. This analysis showed that there were surprisingly few similarities between the different methods of measuring association strengths. Possible reasons for this discrepancy are given in the discussion section. The conclusion of the thesis can be shown by naming the components of creativity: - Originality - Emotion - Inventivity - Process - Intellectuality - Hobby - Performance - From thought to practice
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:77 psychology
Programme:Psychology MSc (66604)
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