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PDF | During the past decade, and especially over the last few years, engineering Creative Thinking, Creative Problem-Solving, and Inventive Design in the. 'Creative thinking is defined as the thinking that enables students to apply their imagination to What it is: Creative thinking encourages students to use a variety of approaches to solve problems, analyze multiple viewpoints, adapt ideas, and arrive at new.

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number of creative thinking techniques to identify potential solutions, then further successful creative thinking techniques used by business analysts and. Introduction: understanding why creative and critical thinking skills are important used in creative thinking and those used in critical thinking. However, it is. The purpose of this research is to build creative thinking skills and creative attitude of students through a model of problem-based lectures Environmental Chemistry (PBL) Green Chemistry visionary. Improved tests of creative thinking skills or creative attitudes were analyzed by.

By Alison Doyle Updated February 11, What is creative thinking, and why is it important in the workplace? Most people associate creativity with artistic tasks such as writing a novel, painting a picture, or composing music. While these are all creative endeavors, not all creative thinkers are artists. Many jobs require creative thinking, including positions in the worlds of business and science. Creativity simply means being able to come up with something new.

I think there is a third constituent here, a third component which is the one that makes an Einstein or an Isaac Newton. For want of a better word, we will call it motivation. In other words, you have to have some kind of a drive, some kind of a desire to find out the answer, a desire to find out what makes things tick. This is a hard thing to put your finger on. It is a matter of temperament probably; that is, a matter of probably early training, early childhood experiences, whether you will motivate in the direction of scientific research.

I think that at a superficial level, it is blended use of several things. This is not any attempt at a deep analysis at all, but my feeling is that a good scientist has a great deal of what we can call curiosity. He wants to know the answers. I think there is a neater way to do this. I think things could be improved a little. I get a big bang myself out of providing a theorem. And I get a big kick out of seeing a clever way of doing some engineering problem, a clever design for a circuit which uses a very small amount of equipment and gets apparently a great deal of result out of it.

Creative Thinking and Learning Project

Well now, this is all well and good, but supposing a person has these three properties to a sufficient extent to be useful, are there any tricks, any gimmicks that he can apply to thinking that will actually aid in creative work, in getting the answers in research work, in general, in finding answers to problems?

I think there are, and I think they can be catalogued to an certain extent. You can make quite a list of them and I think they would be very useful if one did that, so I am going to give a few of them which I have thought up or which people have suggested to me.

The first one that I might speak of is the idea of simplification. A very similar device is seeking similar known problems. I think I could illustrate this schematically in this way. This is the reason why experience in a field is so important that if you are experienced in a field, you will know thousands of problems that have been solved. It seems to be much easier to make two small jumps than the one big jump in any kind of mental thinking.

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Another approach for a given problem is to try to restate it in just as many different forms as you can. Change the words. Change the viewpoint.

Look at it from every possible angle. That is the reason why very frequently someone who is quite green to a problem will sometimes come in and look at it and find the solution like that, while you have been laboring for months over it.

Valuing is related to creative thinking because the very concept of creative is a value-laden one. Hence we reserve the word for only certain kinds of new wholes, as contrasted to the sea of novelties that crowd in upon us. To call something creative implies that it has real extrinsic or intrinsic value.

But in practice, thinking and feeling and willing are almost indistinguishable, for we only have one mind housed in one brain. I compare emotion to the electricity that makes a com- puter work.

As we all know, too much emotion — especially the negative emotions of fear, anxiety or panic — can cloud thinking to the extent that it is virtually impossible to think clearly or creatively. An effective thinker is always a wise manager of his or her emotions. Certainly, creative people tend to have a strong emotional investment in their work.

The great engineer, Isambard Kingdom Brunel, wrote about the Clifton suspension bridge in his diary as if it were a beloved person: Then it can surface again into the conscious mind. What is going on down there? The short answer is that nobody knows. My own theory, one that has stood the test of time, is that the Depth Mind has its own capability for analysing, synthe- sizing and valuing. And when it has done its work it some- times — not unlike a computer — prints out its findings or solutions into our consciousness.

Most of us have experienced such products of the Depth Mind as intuitions — immediate perceptions of the mind without reasoning — hunches, premonitions and inklings. For creative thinkers, inklings — an intimation of something yet unknown — are especially important, for they may be signals that one is on the right track.

What happens is that your Depth Mind is at work, interpreting natural signs, picking up hints that invade your senses below the conscious threshold, and piecing together the paucity of information in the shape of guesses, hints or clues. Sometimes, for example, there may be a feeling of pleasure or excitement that precedes discovery but again indicates that one is groping in the right direction.

To understand the workings of the Depth Mind — at least for me to convince you that I am not making it up! Sometimes I observe with curiosity that uninterrupted activity, which — independent of the subject of any conversa- tion I may be carrying on — continues its course in that department of my brain which is devoted to music. Sometimes it takes a preparatory form — that is, the consid- eration of all details that concern the elaboration of some projected work; another time it may be an entirely new and independent musical idea.

The case of C S Forester, author of the Hornblower books The creative process is much more like a seed being implanted and fusing with another already present, which then grows by a form of accretion. In his autobiography Long Before Forty , the novelist had written one of the best introspective descriptions of what he sensed was going on in his Depth Mind. Notice his imaginative use of analogy see Chapter 3 to take us forward in understanding: There are jellyfish that drift about in the ocean.

They do nothing to seek out their daily food; chance carries them hither and thither, and chance brings them nourishment. Small living things come into contact with their tentacles, and are seized, devoured and digested.

In the ocean there are much higher forms of life than jellyfish, and every human being in the ocean of humanity has much the same experience as every other human being, but some human beings are jellyfish and some are sharks. The tiny little food particles, the minute suggestive experiences, are recognized and seized by the jellyfish writer and are employed by him for his own specialized use.

In my own case it happens that, generally speaking, the initial stimulus is recognized for what it is. The casual phrase dropped by a friend in conversation, the paragraph in a book, the incident observed by the roadside, has some special quality, and is accorded a special welcome.

But having been welcomed, it is forgotten or at least ignored. It sinks into the horrid depths of my subconscious like a water- logged timber into the slime at the bottom of a harbour, where it lies alongside others which have preceded it.

Then, periodically — but by no means systematically — it is hauled up for examination along with its fellows, and sooner or later, some timber is found with barnacles growing on it. Some morning when I am shaving, some evening when I am wondering whether my dinner calls for white wine or red, the original immature idea reappears in my mind, and it has grown. Nearly always it has something to do with what even- tually will be the mid-point of a novel or a short story, and sometimes the growth is towards the end and sometimes towards the beginning.

He lets down as it were a bucket into his subconscious, and draws up something which is normally beyond his reach. He mixes this thing with his normal experience, and out of the mixture he makes a work of art. But the ability to make such connections, to grow new ideas or wholes, is present in all of us in varying degrees.

The first step is to understand that your mind does have a Depth Mind dimension. With a degree of simple awareness, understanding and skill you can work with its holistic capability of growing ideas as if they were seeds connecting or integrating apparently unrelated mate- rials, creating order out of chaos. Yes, because there is an art in knowing when to stand back and let your Depth Mind do its work.

Your Depth Mind can dissect something for you, just as your stomach juices can break down food into its elements. It is also close to the seat of your memory and the repository of your values. It is also a workshop where creative syntheses can be made by an invisible workmanship. We can put two and two together to make four, or we can assemble bits of leather together to make a shoe.

But creative synthesis is likely to be characterized by the combination of unlikely elements, distant from or apparently to others unrelated to one another. When this kind of synthesis is required, the Depth Mind comes into its own. A baby is always a whole. This unwanted and unasked contribution to your sanity is a reminder that the Depth Mind has a degree of autonomy from you.

It is not your slave. There is a dark Inscrutable workmanship that reconciles Discordant elements, makes them cling together In one society. Hotspur puts down the fiery Celt by replying: The comings and goings of inspiration are unpredictable. Graham Greene once said: Writing has to develop its own routine. The thriller writer Leslie Thomas agreed: I sit down, usually without an idea in my head, and stare at the prover- bial blank paper; once I get going, it just goes.

It can seem impossible, like trying to drive a car with more water in the tank than petrol. But you just have to get out and push. Better to advance by inches than not to advance at all. Creative thinking, paradoxically, is for 99 hours out of every not very creative: The raw materials are sifted, judged, adapted, altered and glued together in different ways.

When Queen Victoria congratulated the world-renowned pianist Paderewski on being a genius he replied: Something more is needed. You also need a peculiar kind of sensi- tivity, as if you were standing still and waiting, prepared and ready with all your senses alert, for the faintest marching of the wind in the treetops.

Your spiritual eye may trace some delicate motion in your deeper mind, some thought that stirs like a leaf in the unseen air. It is not the stillness, nor the breath making the embers glow, nor the half-thought that only stirred, but these three mysteries in one that together constitute the experience of inspiration.

The art of creative thinking

The German poet Goethe used a more homely image: The worst is that the very hardest thinking will not bring thoughts. But neither do they come unsought. You expend effort and energy thinking hard. Then, after you have given up, they come sauntering in with their hands in their pockets.

Thinking pdf creative

If the effort had not been made to open the door, however, who knows if they would have come? Watt found that the condenser for the Newcomen steam engine, which he studied at the University of Glasgow, was very inefficient. Power for each stroke was developed by first filling the cylinder with steam and then cooling it with a jet of water. This cooling action condensed the steam and formed a vacuum behind the piston, which the pressure of the atmosphere then forced to move.

Watt calcu- lated that this process of alternately heating and cooling of the cylinder wasted three-quarters of the heat supplied to the engine. He worked for two years on the problem with no solution in sight.

Then, one fine Sunday afternoon, he was out walking: I was thinking of the engine at the time. It helps, too, if you have a feeling of expectancy or confidence. We have all been given minds capable of creative thinking and there is no going back on that.

So we are more than halfway there. We just have to believe that there are words and music in the air, so to speak, if we tune in our instruments to the right wavelengths. They will come in their own time and place. Our task is to be ready for them.

For inspiration, like chance, favours the prepared mind. By contrast, negative feelings of fear, anxiety or worry, even anxiety that inspiration will never come or never return — are antithetical to this basic attitude of trust.

They drive away what they long for. It is as if it is sometimes a meeting place between human thought and divine inspiration, issuing in genuinely creative ideas and new creations. Whether true or not, it may be a useful and productive strategy to act as if it were true. Who is the giver? How is the gift given? What is its nature? How is it best preserved?

Can it be lost? Inspiration is a companion that will appear beside you on certain stretches of the road.

Thinking pdf creative

Listen to your inklings! But having the right attitude of expectancy, together with a measure of hope and confidence, certainly seems to pay off. He was, he said, a good analyst but not a truly creative thinker. People who think creatively hear the music of the spheres.

I have heard them once or twice. Creative thinkers are clearly stronger in synthe- sizing and in their imagination. But the best of them are equally strong in their analysing ability and the faculty of valuing or judging.

It is this combination of mental strengths, supported by some important personal qualities or character- istics that make for a formidable creative mind.

All these abilities — analysing, synthesizing and valuing — are at work when you are attempting to think creatively. That is partly why creative thinking cannot be broken down into a process as psychological analysts have constantly attempted to do , still less a system.

It is not a stately procession from analysis to synthesis, and from synthesis to evaluation. The nearest approach to identifying an underlying process is the one made by Graham Wallas in The Art of Thought He proposed that the germination of original ideas passes through four phases: Now this is over-simplified, for creative thinkers may not follow that sequence, but it is nonetheless a useful frame- work.

It is followed by a period when conscious attention is switched away from the topic, either by accident or design the incubation phase.

Sometimes there follows a sudden flash of insight or intuition illumination followed by a period when the idea is subjected to critical tests and then modified the verification stage. My own perspective is slightly different. There is a conscious phase when you are aware of predominantly trying to analyse the matter that has engaged your attention. You may play around with some restructuring of it synthesizing. We may then receive the products of such subliminal thinking in a variety of ways.

During the process of working out, other fresh ideas and developments of a creative kind will still occur. Things are made in the making. The object of analysis is clarity of thought. For clear thinking should precede and accompany creative thinking. What is the focus of your thinking? Is it some necessity, some everyday problem, or a resource that could be exploited in several different ways? If it is a problem, what are the success criteria for any satisfactory solution? Check your definition of the problem see Appendix A, page Are you rating symptoms rather than the disease?

There are often several equally valid but not equally obvious ways of defining any problem. But each definition is a general statement of a potential solution to the problem. So different definitions are worth collecting: The definition you settle upon may have a powerful influence in programming your Depth Mind.

If it leads nowhere, try another definition. At the end of the 18th century, Jenner took the first step towards ending the scourge of smallpox when he turned from the question of why people caught the disease to why dairymaids did not: Two men were walking in the African bush when they met a very hungry cheetah who eyed them ferociously.

One of the men fished out some running shoes from his knapsack and bent down to put them on. You should learn to think generally about it, like a scientist scanning a problem area for clues.

Thinkertoys: A Handbook of Creative-Thinking Techniques - PDF Free Download

Let it speak to you. It is so easy to introduce subjective elements — such as those troublesome unconscious assumptions or constraints — into the problem or matter under review. Patient analysis and restructuring of the parts, taking up different perspective points in your imagination from which to view it: Are you willing to devote some time and effort to the problems that face you? See them not as problems but opportunities to practise your skills as a thinker.

For creative thinking is essentially about freedom. To think freely means to be free from processes, systems and drills. Play with alternative formulations until one emerges that commands your support. In a million people there are a thousand thinkers, in a thousand thinkers there is one self-thinker.

In the case of the creative mind, it seems to me it is as if the intellect has withdrawn its guards from the gates; ideas rush in pell mell and only then does it review and examine the multitude. You worthy critics, or whatever you may call your- selves, are ashamed or afraid of the momentary and passing madness found in all real creators… Hence your complaints of unfruitfulness — you reject too soon and discriminate too severely.

We criticize or evaluate our own ideas — or half ideas — far too soon. Criticism, especially the wholly negative kind, can be like a cold, white frost in spring: If we can relax our self-critical guard and let ideas come sauntering in, then we shall become more productive thinkers. Be as prolific as you can with ideas until you find one that satisfies you. Then try to translate it into the form you want. Second, beware of critics! Some people are just too critical. There is a Chinese saying to that effect: Any sensible person should, of course, be open to the criticism of others.

It is one of the offices of a friend, if no one else, to offer you constructive crit- icism about your work and perhaps also about your personal conduct. If we did not have this form of feedback we should never improve. But there is a time and place for everything. The time is not when you are exploring and experimenting with new ideas.

This is the reason why professional creative thinkers — authors, inventors and artists, for example — seldom talk about work in progress.

Certain environments are notoriously hostile to creative work. Paradoxically, universities are among them. One of the main functions of a university is to extend the frontiers of knowledge. Therefore you would expect a university to be a community of creative scientists, engineers, philosophers, historians, economists, psychologists and so on. But acade- mics are selected and promoted mainly on account of their intelligence, even cleverness, as analytical and critical scholars, not as creative thinkers.

An over-critical atmosphere can develop. When, as a young historian, G M Trevelyan told his professor that he wanted to write books on history he was at once advised to leave Cambridge University. The same principle applies to schools, colleges, churches, industrial and commercial organizations, even families. Surround yourself with people who are not going to subject your ideas to premature criticism. Yes, but that cheats you out of the kinds of discussion that are generally valuable to thinkers.

They may have relevant experi- ence or knowledge. They are likely to spot and challenge your unconscious assumptions. They can lead you to question your preconceptions and what you believe are facts.

In short, you need other people in order to think — for thinking is a social activity — but you do not need over-critical people, or those who cannot reserve their critical responses in order to fit in with your needs.

Besides managing your own critical faculty you have to turn the critical faculties of others to good account. That entails knowing when and how to avoid criticism as well as when and how to invite it. The latter tend to value analysis and criticism above originality and innovative thinking. Justly to discriminate, firmly to establish, wisely to prescribe and honestly to be aware — these are the true aims and duties of criticism. To find fault is easy; to do better may be difficult.

It was, he felt, the supreme gift of William Shakespeare as a creative thinker. They jump to certainties — any certainties — just to escape from the unpleasant state of not knowing. They are like the young man who will not wait to meet the right girl, however long the waiting, but marries, simply in order to escape from the state of being unmarried. Thinking sometimes leads you up to a locked door.

You are denied entry, however hard you knock. There seems to be some insurmountable barrier, a refusal to give you what you are seeking.

Yet you sense something is there. You feel as if you are in a state of suspended animation; you are wandering around in the dark. All you have are unanswered or half- answered questions, doubts, uncertainties and contradic- tions. You are like a person who suspects there is something gravely wrong with their health and is awaiting the results of medical tests. The temptation to anxiety or fear is over- whelming.

Anxiety is diffused fear, for the object of it is not known clearly or visibly. If you are in a jungle and see a tiger coming towards you, you are afraid; if there is no tiger and you still feel afraid, you are suffering from anxiety.

In the health analogy what the person needs is courage. Courage does not mean the absence of anxiety or fear — we would be inhuman not to experience them. It means the ability to contain, control or manage anxiety, so that it does not freeze us into inaction. More creative thinkers have a higher threshold of tolerance to uncertainty, complexity and apparent disorder than others.

For these are conditions that often produce the best results. They do not feel a need to reach out and pluck a premature conclusion or unripe solution. That abstinence requires an intellectual form of courage. For you have to be able to put up with doubt, obscurity and ambiguity for a long time, and these are negative states within the kingdom of the positive.

The great American pioneer Daniel Boone, famous for his journeys into the trackless forests of the Western Frontier in the region we now call Kentucky, was once asked if he was ever lost. When your mind does not know where it is going, it has to wander around.

Courage and perseverance are cousins. The hundredth time I am right. Secrets are not yielded easily. You have to be willing, if necessary, to persist in your particular enterprise of thought, despite counter-influences, opposition or discour- agement. When you feel that being persistent is a difficult task, think of the bee. A red clover blossom contains less than one-eighth of a grain of sugar: A bee, flitting here and there for sweetness, must visit 56, clover heads for 1 pound of honey: When a bee performs that operation 60 times 56, or 3,, times, it secures enough sweetness for only 1 pound of honey!

For life ultimately is not clearly understandable. It is riven with mystery. The area of the inexplicable increases as we grow older. Creative thinking is a form of active, energetic patience.

Wait for order to emerge out of chaos. It needs a midwife when its time has come. There must be a beginning of any great matter, but the continuing unto the end until it be thoroughly finished yields the true glory.

Amiel The longer you are in the presence of a difficulty the less likely you are to solve it. Although creative thinking requires sustained attention, sometimes over a period of years, it does not always have to be conscious attention.

It is as if you are delegating the question, problem or opportunity to another departure of your mind. Having briefed your Depth Mind, as it were, by conscious mental work, you should then switch off your attention. Wait for your unconscious mind to telephone you: Remember that the testimonies to its capacity for creative work are overwhelming.

The writer H E Bates said: My stories and the people in them are almost wholly bred in imagination, that part of the brain of which we really know so little, their genesis over and over again inspired by little things, a face at a window, a chance remark, the disturbing quality of a pair of eyes, the sound of wind on a seashore. From such apparent trivialities, from the merest grain of fertile seed, do books mysteriously grow. A friendly and positive expectancy is rewarded when your Depth Mind stirs.

The important thing then is not to keep your analytical and critical powers switched off. Drift, wait and obey. But that is the composition: An orchestral work can contain several hundred thousand notes, all relating to one another. At the beginning one is trying to determine the laws that will govern those relationships, which is intellectual rather than creative.

But none of the hard work is wasted. The mind connects things in unbelievable ways. And at the end, it all pours out. For Leonardo da Vinci the worlds of science and art were deeply interconnected.

Thinking pdf creative

His scientific notebooks were filled with pictures, colours and images; his sketchbook for paint- ings abounded with geometry, anatomy and perspective. He wrote: To develop a complete mind: Study the science of art; Study the art of science. Learn how to see. Realize that everything connects to everything else. Remember those words of Rodin: You may become aware that your Depth Mind has done some work for you when your body is active but your mind is in neutral.

Ideas often come to people when they are walking or driving a car. Both the key connections that led to the development of X-ray crystallography and to the invention of the body scanner occurred to their originators while out walking.

Physical relaxation — sitting on a train, having a bath, lying awake in the morning — is another conducive state.

Pdf creative thinking

Moving gets me unclogged in my head. But I come home knowing that life is possible and even, sometimes, beautiful. It is easier for you to do that if you are confident that your unconscious mind is taking over the baton. Let them saunter in at their own time and place. A heightened awareness and detached interest on your part will create the right climate. Everything is connected with everything else, but our minds cannot always perceive the links.

Is it simple? Is it true? Is it beautiful? Is it useful? Is it practicable? Is it commercial? To raise new questions, new possibilities, to regard old problems from a new angle, requires creative imagination and marks real advance in science. Thomas Carlyle When you are relaxed in bed before going to sleep it is good to think about an issue requiring some Depth Mind activity.

The value of doing so has long been known. As Leonardo da Vinci wrote: Why we dream is still largely a mystery. Dreams are extraordinary creations of our imagining faculty in the inner brain.

The man who invented the Singer sewing machine reached an impasse when he could not get the thread to run through the needle consistently.

As they came closer, he noticed that every spear had a hole at the bottom of the blade, and the next morning he made a needle with its eye near the point, instead of at the top.

His machine was complete. You may like to try the experiment of jotting down fragments of dreams you can recall when you wake up. See how many suggestions or meanings you can discern in them. Even if they do not solve your problems, dreams may reveal your true feelings and desires, especially if these have been suppressed for too long.

In designing a project of such vast size and complexity there were bound to be snags. He told me that at one point, when he was held up by a particular technical difficulty, he had an abscess on a tooth and went to his dentist, who proposed to remove the molar under a local anaesthetic. As soon as he had the injection, Spence passed out. Another inspiration was received when, flipping though the pages of a natural history magazine, he came across an enlargement of the eye of a fly, and that gave him the general lines for the vault.

The philosopher Thomas Hobbes kept a notebook at hand. Once, when Newton had a particularly illuminating idea while walking down the steps of his wine cellar to fetch a bottle for some guests, he promptly abandoned his errand.

The bemused guests discov- ered him some time later hard at work in his study! Quite why sleep plays such an important part in helping or enabling the Depth Mind to analyse, synthesize and value is still a mystery. Dreams suggest an inner freedom to make all sorts of random connections between different constellations of brain cells. There may be some sort of shaking up of the kaleidoscope, resulting in new patterns forming in the mine shafts of the mind.

We just do not know. This ignorance of how the Depth Mind works does not matter very much. What does matter is that it does work. Whence and how these come I know not nor can I force them. Nor do I hear in my imagination the parts successfully, but I hear them at the same time alto- gether. Use that principle by program- ming your Depth Mind for a few minutes as you lie in the dark and before you go to sleep.

Perhaps during your waking hours, for instance while you are shaving or washing the dishes, the idea will dart into your mind. Creative thinking leads you to the new idea; creativity includes actually bringing it into existence.

To give something form — to bring an idea actually into existence — requires a range of skills and knowledge beyond the more cerebral ones we have been considering in this book so far. The artist is an obvious case in point. The aim of the current study was to develop and scientifically test a creativity training that anticipates these needs, and several requirements were specified for the training.

Second, the training had to employ a cognitive approach, as training programs that incorporate cognitive-oriented techniques have been shown to be effective see Scott et al.

Third, the training had to be brief a single session, not exceeding 1. Fourth, the current creativity training was developed by a scientist who holds a PhD in creativity and works as a creativity researcher, university teacher, and consultant and by a practitioner who has facilitated more than creativity sessions with more than 14, participants worldwide.

Thus, scientific insights and practical knowledge were combined when designing the training, which may strengthen the internal validity of the training see Scott et al. We hypothesized that improvements in creative performance would be observed following the creativity training.

All the participants were Dutch and recruited for voluntary participation via the online research participation system Sona of Radboud University. Participants were given a choice of earning course credit 2. Finally, the creativity training took place on March 30, at the laboratory of the Behavioural Science Institute, Radboud University, the Netherlands.

Participants were subdivided across three training sessions —, 10 participants; —, 13 participants; —, 9 participants. The same procedures were used during all sessions, which were conducted by the same experimenter and creativity trainer. Design The overall effectiveness of the training was examined using a within-subjects design, with creative performance pre, post as the dependent variable.

Training Techniques The training lasted 1. Based on the requirements outlined in the introduction, the following techniques were incorporated in the training: Silence, lines of evolution, random connections, and SCAMPER. Each of these techniques is described in detail below. Technique 1: Silence The participants were first provided with an explanation of the benefits of brainstorming individually and in silence. In particular, they were informed that brainstorming alone and in silence is beneficial for the creative process as it allows one to generate ideas without any restrictions, guidelines, or distractions.

In addition, personal expertise and background knowledge can be used and individuals are not influenced by the ideas generated by other people. Moreover, during an individual brainstorming session, the creative thought process is not influenced by group processes e. If these group processes are at play at the beginning of a brainstorming session, the group may focus on a narrow range of idea directions—the ones mentioned by the participants who take the lead—and individual brainpower and expertise may be lost.

Technique 2: Lines of Evolution This technique relies on the findings of a Russian engineer, Genrikh Altshuller, who studied thousands of patents. He noticed that the evolution of breakthrough ideas—especially in the domain of technical innovation—follows universal principles. For example, a line of evolution could include changes in the form of an object using the following pattern: from solid, to powder or pieces, to liquid, to foam, to gel, to mechanics, to electronics, to spheres.

The underlying approach of this technique is that one uses a random stimulus—for example, an object in the room or a picture in a newspaper—and tries to generate as many associations related to this stimulus as possible. Next, one can connect these associations to the problem that needs to be solved. By connecting these associations to the sun cream problem, one might generate the idea of colored sun cream i.

Thus, by facilitating the generation of random connections, this technique helps to create an environment that allows and encourages the generation of ideas that would very likely not emerge intentionally—a process which is called serendipitous creativity.

The notion of serendipity is common throughout the history of creativity and scientific innovation, reportedly being involved in discoveries such as penicillin, the microwave, and the Post-it note. Technique 4: Scamper During the creative process, novel solutions may emerge when forced to think of possible changes to an existing idea or product. Hereby, a list of suggestions for possible changes can be helpful.

While applying these techniques, the participants have to remember the principle of force fitting; that is, if they cannot think of anything in response to the SCAMPER prompt they are using, they have to force a response i. Measures of Creative Performance Divergent Thinking: the AUT One of the creative skills to be developed by the current training program was divergent thinking, which is the capacity to generate multiple alternatives and solutions.

There is a multitude of evidence suggesting that divergent thinking represents a distinct ability necessary for many forms of creative performance Bachelor and Michael ; Mumford et al. Divergent thinking can be assessed using open-ended tests, and several studies have documented its test-retest reliability for example, see Yamamoto a , b.

Moreover, divergent thinking tests have been recommended as tests of effectiveness for creativity trainings DeHaan One of the most frequently used and well-validated divergent thinking test is the Alternative Uses task AUT, Guilford During the AUT, the participants are asked to list as many different uses for a common object as possible and to make sure that the ideas they come up with are not too common and not completely impossible.

The objects used in the current study were a brick and a newspaper and they were counterbalanced between the pre- and post-measure across the participants. Cognitive flexibility is characterized by global as opposed to local processing of information for example, Ashby et al. In other words, cognitive flexibility involves the ability to break cognitive patterns, to overcome functional fixedness, and to avoid a reliance on conventional ideas or solutions Guilford A more detailed description of the three measures is provided below.