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Programmed instruction for creativity

Williams, Robert Ellis

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Robert Ellis Williams


The aim of the research was to discover if it was possible to use Programmed Instructional methods to increase Creative Ability; with particular reference to the visual creative field.
Test instruments for measuring creative ability were found by correlating scores on possible test instruments with scores on Art Works judged for creativity. The Torrance Tests of Creative Thinking (Figural Form: Originality and Elaboration scores) were found to be indicators of levels of creative ability. The subjects involved in this section of the research were eighty-six pupils (males and females: 1st and 3rd Years) of a rural secondary school in England.
A Creativity Programme was developed that was administered to an experimental form of 3rd Year pupils during the normal school timetable.
A second 3rd Year form was used as a control group: normal teaching methods were used with this group.
The Creativity Programme was comprised of a number of Elements and Units which led the learners from the evaluation of products - as more creative or less creative - through the acquisition of knowledge concerning the creative personality and creative processes to the use of the 'deferred judgement' method of solving problems creatively. Finally the learners used this method to produce a painting.
Following the administration of the programme to the experimental group of 3rd Year male and female pupils (they were 1st Year pupils when the test instruments had been selected), the Tests and Art Works were administered as post-tests to both 3rd Year groups. The scores obtained when the pupils were 1st Years were used as pre-test data.
The data gathered from the pre-test and post-test administrations were analysed. The main instrument for analysis "being the Analysis of Variance. The differences between the means for the control and experimental groups, males and females, from the first test administration to the second test administration were found to be significant.
These differences between the means indicated that the experimental group had increased its creative ability, as measured by the test instruments. It was concluded that in all probability this increase was due to the intervening administration of the Creativity Programme; and that there were grounds for believing that it was possible to increase Creative Ability through the use of Programmed Instructional methods.


Williams, R. E. (1975). Programmed instruction for creativity


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