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Mathematical creativity : investigating whether interhemispheric communication and conflict solving ability underly incubation and insight processes among university students

Nagel, Simon (2020) Mathematical creativity : investigating whether interhemispheric communication and conflict solving ability underly incubation and insight processes among university students.

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Abstract:Current math-education is going through reformative changes. The new, successful approach to realistic mathematics education (RME) applies math-problems to real-world contexts and aims to prepare students better for professional life. Despite its essential role for the success of RME, mathematical creativity received little attention by research. In this study, the roles of conflict solving ability and interhemispheric communication were examined as potential cognitive mechanisms underlying the subconscious math-creativity processes of incubation and insight. Participants (N = 7) were categorized as mathematically gifted (MG) with high math-intelligence and creativity or mathematically intelligent (MI) only with high math-intelligence. Measures of interhemispheric communication (finger tapping paradigm) and conflict solving (Eriksen flanker task) have been assessed for between-group differences and were correlated with performance on insight-based tests each including an incubation break. Results suggest that the finger tapping paradigm was invalid for assessment of interhemispheric communication and that conflict solving ability was related to two types of insight-gaining strategies. One was fast-paced based on intuition, the other was slower and analytical. No meaningful results have been observed in relation to incubation. Further, no results were significant due to a small sample size. Further research should try to clarify processes underlying incubation and insight. This way, RME curricula can be optimized and training for related cognitive capacities can be developed to improve students’ math-creativity.
Item Type:Essay (Bachelor)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:77 psychology
Programme:Psychology BSc (56604)
Link to this item:http://purl.utwente.nl/essays/82255
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