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TEMPLE / Psychology / PSY 3100 / What is proposed theories on methods of studying creativity?

What is proposed theories on methods of studying creativity?

What is proposed theories on methods of studying creativity?


School: Temple University
Department: Psychology
Course: Topics: Brain, Behavior and Cognition: Psychology of Creativity
Professor: Weisberg
Term: Spring 2016
Tags: Psychology, Creativity, and Topics
Cost: 50
Name: Exam 1 Study Guide
Description: This guide includes 3 documents: Important theories, Important facts about the 2 major case studies (Guernica & DNA Model) as well as Important facts about the case study of Falling Water.
Uploaded: 02/19/2016
10 Pages 3 Views 6 Unlocks

Virgil Thiel (Rating: )

I was sick all last week and these notes were exactly what I needed to get caught up. Cheers!

Proposed views of Creativity in Psychology  

What is proposed theories on methods of studying creativity?

∙ Weisberg: creative thought processes are same as ordinary thought  processes

∙ Foundation View: Continuity; thinkers adopt and go beyond the past to  produce genuinely novel ideas and objects

Proposed views on Definition of Creativity

∙ Value: the product:

o must carry out the task for which it was designed

o Creative scientific theory must help us understand the domain in  question

o Must be appreciated by some audience beyond the artist

o Creative solution to a problem must actually solve the problem ∙    Csikszenthmjiihaly’s cycle = 3 components that make any product  creative 

o Present discovery to field/make it public

o Gatekeepers of the domain decide whether new finding is valuable  enough to publish

o Product becomes part of the domain/becomes creative

∙ Sternberg: Propulsion model of creative Contributions 

o Innovation can propel field in some direction, even if same direction as  current one

o Can occur whether the creator intended to do so or not

o 4/8 different effects a creative contribution can have on a field:  Forward Incrementation: builds on what has already been  done (continuity), without changing basic direction in field i.e.  We also discuss several other topics like Metamorphism means what?


 Redirection: radical shift away from current direction of field  i.e. Cubism

 Advance Forward Incrementation: “ahead of its time;”  

contribution too advanced for field to absorbed i.e.  

Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring

 Redefinition: new perspective on current state in field i.e.  

theory that ulcers caused by bacteria in stomach & Andy  Warhol’s Pop Art

Proposed Theories on Methods of studying Creativity Don't forget about the age old question of what is Pangaea?

∙ Gardner’s Multiple Intelligences (Biographical Methods) o Separate ways of dealing with the world (was 7, no 8 and potential 9th)  Self-understanding

 Logical-mathematical

 Spatial

 Musical

 Bodily-Kinesthetic

 Linguistic

 Intrapersonal

 Naturalist

∙ Hayes’ 10 Year Rule (Historiometric Methods)

o Period of silence before first masterwork; usually 10 years after deep  immersion in domain

Proposed theories of Creativity

∙    Plato and Aristotle - The Gods and madness 

o Creative person: messenger/conduit through which gods’ ideas  presented to us; ideas originate outside of normal thinking process  AND outside of person as whole

 Breath in from muses

 Mental illness  

∙    Freud - Unconscious Thinking 

o Unconscious needs and conflicts play important role in determining  subject matter and the way creative individual portrays it

o Associative unconscious

 Poincare – Unconscious processing: incubation and  


 ∙     Unconscious Incubation: thinking about problem  We also discuss several other topics like what is Theory of Well-Being?

unconsciously while consciously thinking about something


 ∙     Illumination: sudden appearance in consciousness of a  

creative idea or solution to a problem

 Eyesneck – Psychoticism 

∙    People born with higher inherited tendency to become  

mentally ill when placed in stressful environment have  

greater tendency to be creative

∙ Leaps of insight: the Gestalt View

o Poincare, Sciszentmihalyi and Simonton

 o Productive vs. reproductive thinking 

∙ Psychometric theories

 o Confluence models of creativity 

 Coming together of several factors needed for creative process:  particular thinking style, knowledge base, personality,  

particular environment

 Guilford – divergent thinking 

∙    Major component: sensitivity to problems

∙    Diverge from old, produce new

∙     2 steps

 o Divergent thinking 

 o Convergent thinking: narrows down alternatives to  

determine best ones (workable product)

∙ Psychometric: focus on measuring psychological  

characteristics of creative people

o Simonton – Ideational Variants 

 Numerous and varied ideas resulting from  

divergent thinking

 o Creative Personality: aspects of personality more

prevalent in creative people than “ordinary people”  We also discuss several other topics like What is rational choice?

that allow them to think more flexibly

 Amabile – Componential Theory of Creativity 

∙    Incorporated social-psychology

∙    1st component: domain relevant skills

∙    2nd component: creativity relevant skills

∙    Research found person’s attitude toward task critical in  

determining response

o Intrinsically motivated (higher chance of  

innovation) vs. extrinsically motivated

 Sternberg and Lubart’s Investment Theory of Creativity ∙    Analysis of creative thinking based on economic  


o Thinker proposes unpopular ideas that have  

potential growth

o Perseverance + convincing  Sell high

∙ Must possess important set of intellectual abilities:

o See problems in new ways and go beyond ordinary  


o Recognize which ideas worth pursuing

o Persuade others of value of one’s ideas

∙ Must possess knowledge of domain (TOO MUCH  


∙ Must possess personality that allows you to think  We also discuss several other topics like What is Glass Steagal Act?


∙ Must possess environment that supports and rewards  

creative ideas

∙ Evolutionary Theories

o Campbell – Blind variation and Selective Retention 

 Based on Darwin’s theory  

 Must come about through rejection of past as basis for  

construction new

 Blind or random generation of ideas in response to problem o Simonton – Wide ranging Confluence theory of Creativity  Incorporates blind-variation and selective-retention mechanism  + cognitive factors, personality characteristics, environmental  influences etc.  If you want to learn more check out adding the capital account to the current account, always yields what?

∙ Cognitive Theories

o Newell, Shaw, & Simon – Cognitive View 

 Creativity = ordinary thinking

 Remote analogy; humans as information-processing systems ∙    Input and output units that allow interaction with world

∙    RAM = Working memory

∙    Hard drive = long term memory storage system

 Weisberg

∙    We must first understand ordinary thinking

o Hobbes – Contiguity  

 Thoughts lead to one another because corresponding events  were experienced together

o Aristotle – Common Content 

 Makes one thought call forth another even if corresponding  

events didn’t occur in contiguity

 Structural analogies

 Deductive Reasoning

o Lovett – Creative thinking = problem solving 

 Analysis and transformation of information toward a specific  goal, no matter how easy or difficult

 o Ericsson and Simon – Theory of Verbal Protocols 

 Type 1 verbalization “turn off mute” – don’t disrupt thoughts  Type 2 Verbalization – nonverbal processes translated verbally –  slows down process

 Type 3 verbalization – report specific pieces of info and explain  actions – may affect outcome of thinking process  

o Getzels and Csikszentmihaly – Problem Finding 

 2 problems: deciding what to paint and figuring out how

Expertise in Creative Thinking

 ∙      Theory of Inert Knowledge 

o Gick and Holyoak studied spontaneous transfer = highly unlikely ∙     Dunbar - Theory of Analogical Paradox 

o Expertise in an area may make analogical transfer easier

 ∙      Theory of Mapping 

o If you don’t comprehend general structure of problem; you will only  understand the solution in a specific context

∙    De Groot Theory on Expertise and Problem Solving in Chess o Masters form mental representation of the game through years of  study

o Rely on domain specific expertise  

o Chase and Simon – Clustering/Chunking 

 Top-down process affects focusing attention in a situation which  affects what you recall

Practice and Expertise in Musical Performance

∙    Ericsson-Krampe, Tesch Theory on Deliberate Practice 

o Different levels of achievement results from different levels of practice Theories on the Creative Cognition Approach

 ∙      Smith, Ward, and Finke’s Creative Cognition Approach to Creativity o All human cognition is basically creative; result of application of  ordinary cognitive process

 o Guided Imagery 

 More time to choose pre-inventive form = higher percentage of  creative inventions produced

Theories on Practice vs. Talent?

 ∙      Galton’s 3 components 

o Innate capability

o Motivation

o Capacity to work hard

 ∙      Acquired-Expertise view 

o Differences in levels of achievement may be due to differences in  expertise based on practice

∙     Ericsson et al. – High Practice Failures 

o Some people may have quit because they weren’t advancing in spite of practice

∙     Winner – Savants 

o Evidence of innate talent without extensive practice

o Driven by internal “rage to master”

 ∙      Tension View 

o Creativity should come about as a result of breaking away from  expertise “out of the box”  

 ∙      Ordinary-Thinking View 

o Dependent on knowledge or expertise form experience

o Develop skills through study and acquire expertise through deliberate  practice

o Antecedents traceable to experiences

o Top-down process

o Structural coherence

o Local and regional analogies link ideas

o Ideas traceable to environmental events

 ∙      Extraordinary-Thinking View 

o Break from bonds of knowledge to create

o Shouldn’t be directly traceable to experiences

o Defies logic; lacks structural coherence

o Use distant analogies

DNA Model

∙ Objective Process

∙ Discovery

∙ Ill-defined problem

∙ Forward incrementations

∙ The Double Helix NOT radical advance

o Reading Schroedinger’s book about genetic material & x-ray data =  you could make crystal of DNA  Structure is recreatable (external  stimulus)

o Initial strategy grew out of (expertise): adopted method of study from Pauling on the alpha helix (Antecedent)

o Analogical transfer: decided DNA helix too because of alpha helix  Watson and Crick’s use of Pauling’s alpha-helix as base for DNA  helix (DNA Model=target)

 Working backwards

 Alpha-keratin and DNA are analogous molecules  

 Used weak method of working backwards then because of  

knowledge, also employed strong method

∙ According to Dunbar, Watson and Crick paradox concerning  analogical transfer: why is transfer easy to find in real life but not in lab: o Regional analogy: both base (alpha-helix) and target (DNA) part  of their domain of research 

 Already thought of each molecule abstractly

 Expertise in an area may make analogical transfer  

more likely to occur

∙ College undergrads naïve/don’t think abstractly

o Ordinary thinking + external info (Shroedinger’s book, Pauling’s  research, Franklin’s photo 51 & report on dimensions of unit cell of  molecule)

∙ Basic Cognitive Components of Creative thinking

o Deductive reasoning (Crick), drawing conclusions  

o Structured thinking

∙ Heuristic Methods Used

o Watson and Crick may have worked backwards from goal when they  adopted idea of DNA being helix but had an ill-defined problem o Watson used trial and error

 Last part: different pairings of nucleotides like jig saw puzzle ∙ Creative Thinking and Environmental Events

o Watson saw Franklins photo and changed his image of structure of DNA ∙ Continuity with the past

o Antecedents: Pauling’s ideas

o Incremental movement, not great leap

∙ Top-down Processes: Use of knowledge

o The reason Watson and Crick fared better than other scientists is  because of their background knowledge in specific areas

 Important in planning

∙ Quantitative Case Study

o Used historiometric methods to study individual case study  Hard to quantify things

∙ Gestalt Psychologists like Simonton feel it is free-associative thinking ∙ Guilford Believe divergent thinking

∙ New research: Foundation view

o fine-tuning to adapt old idea to new situation NOT rejection of past Guernica

∙ Subjective Process

∙ Creation

∙ Basic Cognitive Components of Creative Thinking

o Planning (sketches), judging (changing position of bulls, removal of  upraised arms), planning, organizing

o Structured thinking (knew structure when he began)

 Worked backwards

∙ Continuity with the past

o Antecedent: Minotauromachy (palindrome)

o Incremental movement, not great leap

∙ Creative Thinking and Environmental events

o Bombing of town set Picasso on new path; switched from studio  (External stimulus)

∙ Top down processes used

∙ Heuristic Methods Used

o Guernica, Picasso worked backwards because he already had  structure

∙ Quantitative case study

o Limitation: availability of data (can we know if Picasso was thinking of  Minotauromachy while painting Guernica? No)

∙ Problem

o How to express feelings about the bombing

o Ill-defined

∙ Not all creative works equivalent

o Some of Picasso’s earlier works much more innovative than Guernica ∙ Type of creative contribution

o Forward incremenation

o Wasn’t radical advance in Picasso’s style or any style in art ∙ Gestalt Psychologists like Simonton feel it is free-associative thinking ∙ Guilford Believe divergent thinking

∙ New Research: Foundation View

o fine-tuning to adapt old idea to new situation NOT rejection of past ∙ Picasso followed more of a 6 year rule

o Similar development as other painters

Falling Water 

∙ Met family through student; asked to build home

∙ Asked for map of land

∙ 1st visit to Bear Run

o self-report of vision of land + house

 BUT said that he “vaguely” formed mental representation

 30 years later he says “it was a natural thing”

o How does he grasp the vision?

 Antecedents:  

∙ External stimuli

o construction in Japan peak interest in houses on  


o School (Taliesin) by the water

o Problems:

 Because of layout of land, Northern Bank  

only place to build house

 Too small to see waterfall  cantilevered over


 Family wanted to entertain  had to build up

∙ Expertise

o Built hydroelectric power plant that cantilevered

over a waterfall

o Prairie Houses

 Specifically The Gale House

∙ Over hanging roof-cantilevered

∙ Cantilevered balcony

∙ Freeze of windows

∙ Central stone core

∙ Open cruciform plan

∙ Used to play with wooden blocks  

 Working Method:  

∙ Slow and deliberate in private

o Didn’t put things on paper before he was sure  

o work at 3-4am

o Constantly studied map of land; ideas germinating  

in his mind (Thinking, planning, judging,  

organizing, from mental representation)

 Small steps

 Still made many sketches once he did start

physical planning

∙ Quick and facile in public  

o A lot of his construction had many faults

∙ 2nd visit to Bear run

o Kaufman calls to see Wright’s plans but he hasn’t drawn anything o In the 2 hours before he arrives, draws plan

 Apprentice says it “poured out of him”

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