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What is Creativity ?

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  1. What is Creativity ? The ability to produce original, imaginative and unique ideas. ‘LATERAL THINKING ?’

  2. What is Creativity? • A hunch is creativity trying to tell you something. Frank Capra • INTUITION

  3. What is Creativity? • Imagination is more important than knowledge. Albert Einstein • DIVERGENT THINKING

  4. Creativity and Decision Making • Phases of Creativity • Theories of Creativity • Blocks to Creativity • Creativity Enhancing Techniques • Value-Focused Thinking Approach • Quality Tools for Creativity

  5. Introduction • Better decisions requires better alternatives • Bad alternatives will lead to bad decisions • How do we obtain these better alternatives? • Extend beyond current “the box” • Find ways to achieve objectives in new ways • These new alternatives have elements of novelty and effectiveness

  6. Creative? • But I’m not creative enough!! • There are techniques and tools to enhance creativity • These tools guide the formation and flow of ideas in the mind • You can be an expert in your field, and that will help the creative process • You can expand your cognitive process to become more creative • Other experiences, puzzles, reading, etc • We want to have “fluency” and “flexibility” • Quickly generate many ideas across a wide range

  7. Psychological Theories of Creativity • Well studied area; very rich literature • Psychoanalytic Theory • Creative thought is the product of brain processing not accessible to conscious thought • Behavioral Theory • Creative behavior results from environmental stimuli • Appropriate awards can lead to creative behavior • Cognitive Approach • Creative behavior stems from a capacity for making unusual and new mental associations of concepts • Creative people create more “variations”

  8. Psychological Theories of Creativity • Self-Actualization • Able to perceive reality accurately • Compare cultures objectively • Can look at things in a fresh, naïve, simple way • Be happy and thus be creative!

  9. Phases of Creative Process • Preparation • Learn about the problem • Examine problem from various perspectives • Similar to structuring the problem • Understanding the structure of the problem and how elements relate to one another is preparation for the creative process

  10. Phases of Creative Process • Incubation • Preparation • Explore new paths and alternatives • Many include unconscious processing of information • Find solutions to problems in a dream • Position of pieces of information yields a creative solution • How many have wanted to “think about it for a while?”

  11. Phases of Creative Process • Preparation • Incubation • Illumination • When all the pieces come together • Verification • Does the solution have merit? • Return to the hard logic of the problem • Are all constraints being satisfied? • How well does it perform with respect to the fundamental objectives?

  12. Blocks to Creativity • A “block to creativity” interferes with creativity • Why should we be concerned about them? • They hinder our decision analytical process • If we understand what they are, and why they hinder the process, we can hopefully avoid them • Framing and Perceptual Blocks • Arise in the ways we tend to perceive, define, and examine the problem

  13. Perceptual Blocks • Stereotyping – fit into some standard category • Tacit assumptions – impose artificial constraints • Saturation • Focus too quickly on “obvious” problem • Focusing to much on details • Getting overwhelmed with data • Inability to see problem from other viewpoints • Multiple objectives will be at play • Must understand other’s values and objectives

  14. Emotional or Value-based Blocks • Fear of taking a risk • Risk aversion is a key decision analysis concept • May be counterproductive to not offer “wild” ideas • Status quo bias • Various levels of bias to current state of affairs • Change can be hard to accept • Reality versus Fantasy • Some people only want realistic solutions • Such people are comfortable “in their box”

  15. Emotional or Value-based Blocks • Judgment and Criticism • Do not apply your values too soon in creative process • Need to let ideas flow freely • Inability to Incubate • Not well understood • Accepted as a phase • Are we always given time to incubate an idea?

  16. Cultural Blocks • Taboos • Views of culturally accept behavior may block ideas • Humor • Good ideas can be obtained in an informal setting • Often want to let the joking free-wheel for a time • Reason and Logic prevails • Overly analytical thinking (even though it is important) • Tradition and change • Often a strong resistance to changes • The status quo got the decision maker where they are

  17. Environmental Blocks • Non-supportive environment • Environment that dissuades humor and playfulness • Organization is overly structured and routine • Strictly hierarchical structure • Autocratic bosses • Bosses that have all the answers • Over focus on awards, competition and oversight • Strict timelines • Often a tight suspense can lead to good results

  18. Brainstorming • Introduced in 1930s by Osborn • Based on idea of eliminating perceptual blocking filters • Two Principles: • Defer judgment • Quantity breeds quality • Four rules • Rule out criticism • Welcome freewheeling • Seek large quantities of ideas • Encourage combination and improvement of ideas

  19. Brainstorming • Works due to its synergistic effect • Among participants • Combining of ideas is not just additive • Combine pairs, triples, etc of ideas to get new ideas • Generally regarded as a group technique based on a specific objective • Specificity focuses the efforts • Useful in situations calling for idea generation rather than judgment

  20. Synectics • Gordon in 50s found novel ideas expressed as analogies • Research suggested use of analogies a key insight • Reduce problem to barest essentials and search for a natural analogy • Two distinguishing characteristics • Attack of the underlying concept of the problem • Examination of problem from many angles • Three types of analogy (metaphorical thinking) • Fantasy – idealistic versus realistic • Direct – find personal parallel experiences • Personal – place yourself in role of problem

  21. Checklists • Very simple means of generating ideas • Ask and list answers to series of questions. For instance • Are there other uses? • Can something be adapted? • Can something be modified? • Can components be re-arranged? • Can components be combined? • Can some substitution be made? • Osborn (1963) offered a series of idea spurring questions.

  22. Obsorn’s Questions • Put to other uses? • New ways to use as is • Other uses if modified • Adapt? • What else is like this?What other idea does this suggest? • Does the past offer a parallel? • What could I copy? • Whom could I emulate?

  23. Obsorn’s Questions • Modify? • New twist? • Change meaning, color, motion, sound, odor, form shape? • Other changes? • Magnify? • What to add? • More time? Greater frequency? Stronger? Higher? • Longer? Thicker? Extra value? Plus ingredient? • Duplicate? Multiply? Exaggerate?

  24. Obsorn’s Questions • Minify? • What to subtract? Smaller? Condensed? Minature? • Lower? Shorter? Lighter? Omit? Streamline? • Split up? Understate? • Substitute? • Who else instead? What else instead? Other ingredient? Other material? Other process? • Other power? Other place? Other approach? Other tone of voice?

  25. Obsorn’s Questions • Rearrange • Interchange components? Other pattern? Other layout? Other sequence? • Transpose cause and effect? Change pace? Change schedule? • Reverse? • Transpose positive and negative? How about opposites? • Turn it backward? Turn it upside down? Reverse roles? • Change shoes? Turn tables? Turn other cheek?

  26. Obsorn’s Questions • Combine? • How about a blend, an alloy, as assortment, an ensemble? • Combine units? • Combine purposes? • Combine appeals? • Combine ideas?

  27. Forced Relationships • Generate ideas by relating seemingly unrelated ideas • Use combining concept from brainstorming • Ideas may be related yielding more mundane solutions • Use ideas related to the problem and possible to each other if more practical ideas are required • Less effort validating the ideas • Start with the more general ideas and increase the specifics used later • Somewhat related is “Attribute Listing”

  28. Morphological Analysis • Develop a grid of attributes along several dimensions • Examine combinations of attributes • Try to determine a solution/alternative to each combination • Really provides a framework within which to screen all combinations and determine the most appropriate combinations • Strategy-generation table is closely related

  29. Strategy-generation Table • Strategy • Inputs • Process • Outputs

  30. FACTORS FOR CREATIVITY • Mastery of the Subject • Curiosity • Divergent Thinking • Take Risks • Motivation and Persistence • Serendipity

  31. THE CREATIVE PROCESS • Preparation • Incubation • Insight • Evaluation • Elaboration

  32. REFERENCES • Amabile, T.M. (1983). The social psychology of creativity. New York:Springer-Verlag New York Incorporated. • Amabile, T.M. (1999). How to kill creativity. Harvard Business Review, september-october, 1998, 77-87. • Creativity in Education. (n.d.). Retrieved April 21, 2004, from http://www.ltscotland.org.uk/creativity/ • Csikszentmihalyi, M. (1996). Creativity: flow and the psychology of discovery and invention. New York: Haper Collins.

  33. REFERENCES • Csikszentmihalyi, M. (1999). Implications of a systems perspective. In R.J. Sternberg (ed.) Handbook of Creativity. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. • De Souza Fleith, D. (2000). Teacher and student perceptions of creativity in the classroom environment. Roeper Review, 22(2), 148-158. • Driver, Michaela (2001). Fostering creativity in business education: developing creative classroom environments to provide students with critical workplace competencies. Journal of Education for Business, 77 (1), 28-33.

  34. REFERENCES • Finke, R.A., Ward, T.B., & Smith, S.M. (1992). Creative cognition. Cambridge: MIT Press. • Galloway, C.A. (2001). Vygotsky's learning theory. In M. Orey (Ed.), Emerging perspectives on learning, teaching, and technology [Electronic version]. Retrieved April 29, 2004 from Website: http://www.coe.uga.edu/epltt/vygotskyconstructionism.htm • Glover, J.A., Ronning, R.R., & Reynolds, C.R. (Eds.). (1989). Handbook of creativity. New York: Plenum Press • Learning and Teaching Scotland (2004). Creativity counts: portraits in practice [Electronic version]. Retrieved April 21, 2004, from http://www.ltscotland.org.uk/creativity/files/portraitsofpracticelts2004.pdf

  35. REFERENCES • Lubart, T.I. (1999). Creativity across cultures. In R.J. Sternberg (ed.) Handbook of Creativity. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. • Lubart, T.I. (2000). Models of the creative process: past, present and future. Creativity Research Journal, 13(3/4), 295-303. • Mumford, M.D., Mobley, M.I., Uhlman, C.E., Reiter-Palmon, R., & Doares, L.M. (1991) Process analytic models of creative capacities. Creativity Research Journal, 4, 91-122. • Nickerson, R. S. (1999). Enhancing creativity. In R. J. Sternberg (Ed.), Handbook of Creativity. Cambridge: Cambridge Press.

  36. REFERENCES • Simonton, D. K. (2000). Creativity: cognitive, personal, developmental, and social aspects. American Psychologist, 55(1), 151-158. • Sternberg, R.J. (2001). What is the common thread of creativity: its dialectical relation to intelligence and wisdom. American Psychologist, 56, 360-362. • Sternberg, R.J. & Lubart, T. (1995a). Defying the crowd: cultivating creativity in a culture of conformity. New York: Free Press • Sternberg, R.J. & Lubart, T. (1995b). An investment approach to creativity. In S.M. Smith, T.B. Ward, and R.A. Finke (eds.) The Creative Cognition Approach. Cambridge: MIT Press. • Sternberg, R.J. & Lubart, T. (1996). Investing in creativity. American Psychologist, 51(7), 677-688.

  37. REFERENCES • Amabile, T.M. (1983). The social psychology of creativity. New York:Springer-Verlag New York Incorporated. • Amabile, T.M. (1999). How to kill creativity. Harvard Business Review, september-october, 1998, 77-87. • Creativity in Education. (n.d.). Retrieved April 21, 2004, from http://www.ltscotland.org.uk/creativity/ • Csikszentmihalyi, M. (1996). Creativity: flow and the psychology of discovery and invention. New York: Haper Collins.

  38. Selected Online Resources • http://www.apa.org/monitor/nov03/creativitytoc.html Articles from American Psychological Association • http://www.erz.uni-hannover.de/~urban/compmod.htm URBAN's Components Model of Creativity • http://www.ascd.org/publications/books/1996sternberg/intro.html Introduction: Theory of Creativity • http://www.buffalostate.edu/library/creative/ E. H. Butler Library - Creative Studies Library • http://www.ltscotland.org.uk/creativity/ Creativity in Education - Learning and Teaching Scotland • http://www.ncaction.org.uk/creativity/ Creativity: find it; promote it - National Curriculum in Action

  39. QUESTIONS/COMMENTS? • Philomena Bernard • School Counselor • Central Middle School • 457-5895 • Highland Elementary • 457-5161 • pmb2809@slp.k12.la.us