The Efficacy of Teaching Creativity: Assessment of Student Creative Thinking Before and After Exercises
As the global environment becomes increasingly more turbulent and competitive, creativity becomes the focus when preparing current students and future citizens to deal with uncertainty and to adapt to continuous change both personally and professionally. The purpose of the study was to understand how student creative thinking could be increased in a university classroom. Creativity exercises that can be incorporated in various courses were developed. The exercises formed four learning modules: (a) what is creativity, (b) recognizing and identifying opportunities, (c) generating ideas, and (d) evaluating creative ideas. Four instructors administered the exercises in five courses. To evaluate effectiveness of the training, figural format of the Torrance Test of Creative Thinking (TTCT) was used to assess student creative thinking before and after completion of the exercises. Creative thinking, which was operationalized as the composite Creativity Index measured by the TTCT, was significantly higher for the total group of participants after completion of the creativity exercises than before the training. Individual class analyses showed that students in four of the five participating classes had significantly higher creative thinking after completion of the exercises. The study demonstrates that by incorporating creativity exercises into existing courses, instructors can help students develop creative thinking —a critical aspect of one’s professional development.
This is an author's final manuscript of an article from Clothing and Textiles Research Journal 29 (2011): 52–66, doi:10.1177/0887302X11400065.