Beliefs about Creativity

Posted on May 21, 2013 by Adobe Education Latest activity: Apr 17, 2014

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Discuss your reaction (or beliefs) prompted by the findings from recent research by 1000 working professionals.

Specifically:

  • 57% of college educated professionals believe creativity is a learned skill that can be learned in their career, while 65% believe it is a personality trait that is innate
  • 88% agree creativity should be built into education curriculums, and 72% agree they were more focused on subject matter than creative thinking in school
  • 85% agree creative thinking is critical for problem solving in their career but nearly one-third (32%) do not feel comfortable thinking creatively at work

What can you infer from the research finding? What matters about this research finding? Why is it important?

This discussion post is part of the Adobe Education Exchange Professional Development Workshop called Creativity in 21st Century Classrooms: Explore Creativity in Today's Classroom.


Comments (28)

Myron Williams

Posted on Apr 17, 2014 11:08 AM - Permalink

Creativity is born inborn and yet learned. When young children are set in environments where they are free to explore their minds are extremely creative. But too often when they get into school their creativity is boxed an put away. As a college instructor we worked hard at unleashing creativity in students in a class on creativity. Most of them found themselves surprised that creativity was still part of who they are, it just needed to be released. We used art, music, writing, photography as the primary tools with which students worked,

Even at the graduate level in education i seek to unleash creativity in the learners. We explore physical space for teaching as well as social and person spaces for learning. It is in exploring these spaces, when there are no "rules" except learning, that students are surprised they are capable of creating such spaces, and then implementing them when they go back to their home bases.

As a follower of Jesus I also believe we are created in the image of God, and at least part of that image is creative. How that plays out is unique for each person, and is somewhat based on inborn traits, but also areas that can be nurtured and developed with the right spaces and assistance.

delia delgadillo

Posted on Mar 21, 2014 2:57 AM - Permalink

  • 57% of college educated professionals believe creativity is a learned skill that can be learned in their career, while 65% believe it is a personality trait that is innate
  • 88% agree creativity should be built into education curriculums, and 72% agree they were more focused on subject matter than creative thinking in school
  • 85% agree creative thinking is critical for problem solving in their career but nearly one-third (32%) do not feel comfortable thinking creatively at work
Well I personally think creativity is a skill that can and should be taught to children. I use to think creativity was a personality trait but after taking this class I do not think that anymore. Yes , some people are naturally creative and open minded and willing to try new things. While others need that extra time and push toward a creative outcome. I think creativity being pushed into the curriculum is going to be hard on some teachers because there is not enough resources and time. Teachers in public schools are under a lot of pressure and it is hard to let creative assignments be in the curriculm if there is always testing and standards that need to be met . There is also a lot of rules against creative teaching and letting the curriculm change from its usual route. I think it is funny that we teach our students that creative thinking is what will advance you in life and yet most people are not comfortable sharing their ideas in thei work place. How is that possible?

Brad Woolley

Posted on Mar 19, 2014 5:19 PM - Permalink

  • 57% of college educated professionals believe creativity is a learned skill that can be learned in their career, while 65% believe it is a personality trait that is innate
I am of the opinion that creativity is a learned skill however, I do believe that there are those who have a propensity to be more imaginative and creative than others. I critical element to creativity is the ability to seek and welcome change. Creativity also comes in a myriad of skills. I, for example, am far more creative when it comes to designing curriculum for my classes than I am when it comes to artistic endeavors. Keeping in mind that I have spent little time trying to develop my artistic skills and lack even a basic understanding in composition, perspective, texture, lighting, design, etc. I do believe if it became important to me I could learn to become a creative and innovative photographer, for example, by investing the energy and time I've invested in developing curriculum for my classes.

Oran Blackwood

Posted on Mar 6, 2014 8:44 AM - Permalink

  • 88% agree creativity should be built into education curriculums and 72% agree they were more focused on subject matter than creative thinking in school.
Although many teachers I work with feel that this is central to holistic understanding of subject matter and allows to students to think about knowledge that is presented to them in new and unique ways, they feel that they cannot infuse this element into their teaching because of curriculum constraints. We are heading for a national curriculum that will sideline creative subjects as a whole and stigmatise them as being non-critical for future development and employment opportunities. We foresee a future that will breed in stagnation to industries and leave us behind in a world that thrives on innovation.

Elizabeth Fitzgerald

Posted on Feb 18, 2014 9:48 PM - Permalink

I think it is interesting that such a large percentage of people (65%) believe that creativity is a personality trait. I think it needs to start with educators having a growth mindset within themselves, so that they can then teach students that you can do anything you set your mind to, including being creative! Anyone can be creative--it is a process that we need to foster in our youth and within ourselves!

Olu Ojuroye

Posted on Jan 24, 2014 10:50 AM - Permalink

This research finding is very impressive because it engender in people the wholesome awareness that creativity as a topic should be taken seriously by more people in the 21st century education.

Olu Ojuroye

Olu Ojuroye

Posted on Jan 24, 2014 10:44 AM - Permalink

I will go with the second statistic half way. The reason for this is that, I agree with the 88% that creativity should be built into education curriculum and I am currently planning to suggest that to a University in Africa where I am currently affiliated. On the other hand, I have my reservation with the 72% who still think creativity should be subject matter specific. This is the thinking of the old. We need to refer them to listen to Ted Robinson Talk Show.

Olu Ojuroye

Ursula Cable

Posted on Jan 24, 2014 4:45 AM - Permalink

Creative thinking is such a key component of any job that it is really quite confronting to think that 85% of people are uncomfortable with this element of their job. I know that students are often hesitant to put their creative endeavors into the public forum (in the classroom at least) but clearly we need to be giving them more experience, and consequently confidence in doing this, if we want to set them up for success. Consistency in learning environments would be integral to this success. Students need to feel safe and respected to be prepared to put their ideas out there. I wonder if this is why people are uncomfortable doing this in the workplace. We put so much of ourselves into creative products that we open ourselves up to criticism on a personal level.

Ursula Cable

Posted on Jan 24, 2014 4:44 AM - Permalink

Creative thinking is such a key component of any job that it is really quite confronting to think that 85% of people are uncomfortable with this element of their job. I know that students are often hesitant to put their creative endeavors into the public forum (in the classroom at least) but clearly we need to be giving them more experience, and consequently confidence in doing this, if we want to set them up for success. Consistency in learning environments would be integral to this success. Students need to feel safe and respected to be prepared to put their ideas out there. I wonder if this is why people are uncomfortable doing this in the workplace. We put so much of ourselves into creative products that we open ourselves up to criticism on a personal level.

MONICA RAMIREZ

Posted on Jan 20, 2014 1:08 AM - Permalink

Creativity is a competence that should be enriched in education! We should stop teaching for improving test´s results, we should design test that measure competences and skills rather than knowledge. We should support the education of creative children able to improve or change processes, create proposals and change the world. Every single discipline requires creativity. Even though a discipline may need memorization and specific standards to follow, the professionals of the 21st century should be able to create new choices, new opportunities and new strategies to develop a better job. If I think about my education, I agree with the 72% of people that say that curriculums were focused more on subject matter than on creative thinking. My passion for teaching made me discover a creative person that I never though I was. What would have happened if I would have been part of an education system supported in developing creativity skills?

alessandro anglisani

Posted on Sep 4, 2013 9:27 AM - Permalink

i must read a sir Ken Robinson book....i think creativity is innate but at the same time it could be taught ...but how??

Deb Joseph

Posted on Sep 2, 2013 11:04 PM - Permalink

Curriculum must shift from total concept/topic/subject matter coverage to offering more opportunities for deeper topic explorations. Hopefully the Common Core will help leverage a change into deeper explorations in a given topic. Someone mentioned below - and I agree - that the creative process takes time. So often Educators/Admin are pressed for time and don't slow down enough to allow for creativity to happen.

I also believe these numbers reflect an opinion that people are either born with Talent/Creativity or not. People in general are often impatient - they want it all perfect on their first pass on any given project. Creativity can be nurtured by helping people be patient with themselves. To learn to work through the first efforts that fall flat. Endurance. It takes stamina and endurance to foster and grow creativity and creatively. That and the curiosity to continue.

Carolina Creciente

Posted on Sep 1, 2013 1:04 AM - Permalink

I believe what is important about this research is that there is something going on and it seems no one is addressing the issue. 88% is a huge number, and I don´t see changes happening in school curriculums. With regards to the 32%, I believe the pressure of the need of immediate results prevent people from attempting being creative at work. Creativity, as a process, takes time, and sometimes we are expected to solve problems right away, we don´t have time for the process. At least that´s how I´ve felt sometimes. If you add to that that someone at work might think that you are wasting time, and they are wasting money paying for your salary, then it´s no wonder people don´t feel comfortable being creative at work.

Belinda Caulfield

Posted on Aug 28, 2013 3:31 PM - Permalink

57% of college educated professionals believe creativity is a learned skill that can be learned in their career while 65% believe it is a personality trait that is innate.

I think creativity is both a learned skill and also an innate skill that some people are born with. Some people are just born with creative skills and continue being creative throughout their life, whilst some people lose the creativity through school or work as they are trained to see a task on a linear level in that there are processes you must follow to achieve an outcome, others may question the processes and are not afraid to try a different approach. If you look at some primary schools where the students are encouraged to try different approaches to achieve an outcome where in comprehensive or college learners are encouraged to follow procedures to achieve an outcome. A lot of learners find it difficult to think creatively as there is great pressure on them passing exams.

Susan Remmen

Posted on Aug 26, 2013 3:13 AM - Permalink

88% agree creativity should be built into education curriculums, and 72% agree they were more focused on subject matter than creative thinking in school

Creativity takes more time than just focusing on subject matter, but students will be more engaged and learning will be deeper and be retained. Creative lessons also are cross-curricular so more requirements can be learned at the same time.

Lee Nagy

Posted on Aug 15, 2013 3:41 AM - Permalink

Creativity is the key to success, no matter how it is defined.

Jean Alderson

Posted on Aug 14, 2013 3:06 PM - Permalink

Creativity grows in open trusting environments; I believe some people might be born with their creative juices flowing and some like me need time for them to get going.


O Valdivia

Posted on Aug 12, 2013 5:17 AM - Permalink

88% agree creativity should be built into education curriculums, and 72% agree they were more focused on subject matter than creative thinking in school

I do agree with this statement. Instructors are more focus about their curriculum and worry about test scores. It is important that our students learn for life and to do that we need to make our classes fun, relevant, and current to the students time (not the teachers time) without compromising quality education.

Star Mitrani

Posted on Aug 12, 2013 4:56 AM - Permalink

It is very interesting to note that although we value creativity at work, we do not feel comfortable being creative at work. Perhaps it has to be a clear and allowable goal in education and in the workplace in general.

Dennis Martinus

Posted on Jul 28, 2013 5:28 AM - Permalink

"88% agree creativity should be built into education curriculums, and 72% agree they were more focused on subject matter than creative thinking in school"
I agree with this finding.
I can't speak for the US, but where I come from, students are not encouraged to think creatively. However, I see students blossom when given the opportunity to express their voice in a creative way. For this school year I am determined to add more creativity to my lesson plans.

susan leequee

Posted on Jul 21, 2013 2:41 AM - Permalink

"57% of college educated professionals believe creativity is a learned skill that can be learned in their career while 65% believe it is a personality trait that is innate."

Creativity in my view, is an innate trait. It is part of our evolving experience as we grow, explore, learn from trial and error. A component of problem-solving.

Dara Zimmer

Posted on Jul 19, 2013 1:25 AM - Permalink

"57% of college educated professionals believe creativity is a learned skill that can be learned in their career while 65% believe it is a personality trait that is innate."

I don't believe that you can learn creativity through your career at the start, as it is a skill that you must foster from early in your life. Creativity comes to anyone who is open to trial and error and not stuck in formula thinking as children are. You can extend your creative skills during your career as you should never stop practicing and learning.

Gabriel Ochoa Rojas

Posted on Jul 18, 2013 3:33 PM - Permalink

I must write in Spanish.

Mi afinidad en los resultados de la investigación está en que hay que incluir el pensamiento creativo en los procesos de formación, lo que hace que esta dinámica genere soluciones inteligentes en las situaciones de trabajo, el pensamiento creativo es aliado de los procesos de implementación y desarrollo de soluciones en la práctica cotidiana. Esta inclusión es un proceso que debe iniciarse, con el apoyo decidido de las instituciones educativas de los paises, dentro de un programa apoyado por los Ministerios de Educación, y debe ser incluida en la educación pública y privada.

El proceso debe iniciarse desde la educación básica primaria, el bachillerato y por supuesto en las Universidades, en los modelos educativos formales y no formales, técnicos y tecnológicos. Estoy seguro que este modelo educativo, generará un alto impacto en los niveles de conocimiento, desarrollo social, tecnológico y económico, de las comunidades que se decidan a adoptarlo.

Tanisha Bronaugh

Posted on Jul 17, 2013 4:51 AM - Permalink

Creativity is a necessary part of our world, but it seems like people have trouble deciphering where it fits in. Most adults are uncomfortable thinking creatively at work because it is so much easier to go along with the obvious answer. If only more adults would dare to be creative, who knows how amazing this world could become!

Becky Breitwieser

Posted on Jul 16, 2013 9:19 PM - Permalink

Hopefully with Common Core we will be focusing more on critical thinking and creativity and less on rote subject understanding. As a teacher tin the classroom there is a pull between the message of going deeper (which I whole-heartedly support) and students performance on standardized testing that does not always focus on quality of thought but puts a huge emphasis on quantity of subject knowledge. With the further emphasis on connecting teacher evaluations with student performance it puts the teacher in an interesting and sometimes untenable situation. These are issues that need to be answered so we can truly go deep with our students and prepare them to be better world citizens and thinkers.

Elaine Barnum

Posted on Jul 13, 2013 10:32 PM - Permalink

Years ago I quite teaching in the public sector because I was tired of teaching formula writing and test taking skills. It killed me to participate in the killing of the imagination of students for cookie-cutter test taking skills which had nothing to do with real life. And this was beginning to happen even in the kindergarten level. Eventually, necessity had me return to education, but in the private sector that allowed me a bit more freedom to develop and expand my curriculum to meet MY needs for creativity and flexibility. Ultimately, I found my way into the world of the Adobe products and the light bulbs began to turn on again. For the past few years I have started my classes of new students with, "Welcome to my playground. I hope you learn to love it as much as I do!" This summer. I have been reading and researching more and more on creativity and PBLs. Now I can't wait to get back to my classroom to implement all I have learned. I wish I could turn back the clock twenty years to have that extra time ahead of me to be impacting the future of my students. Now I will say, "Let the magic of learning and creating begin and the light bulbs turn on--yes, even in high school!"

Whitney George

Posted on Jun 5, 2013 12:21 AM - Permalink

Creativity is a learned skill, though like subject matter, some students show a more immediate aptitude, perhaps because they have practiced creative thinking more often in the home environment. Standardized testing can create a pressure on teachers that can lead the to belief that there is no time for creative projects when so much content must be covered. The more research and data that proves a connection between authentic learning and creative thinking, the more support I hope to see for the transformation that's needed in K-12 ed.

Lesa Thompson

Posted on Jun 2, 2013 1:32 AM - Permalink

Creativity is a learned skill that involves different ways of looking at and thinking about things. I know she's not a college professor, but Kat Von D is a very creative (and very successful) tattoo artist and business woman who says in her book Go Big or Go Home that creativity depends more on practice, devotion, and dedication than on any sort of rare or magical skills possessed by an elite few. She asserts that if we nourish our inherent creativity, it will grow (pgs. 80-82), which is reminiscient of what Sir Ken Robinson said in his TED Talk on the subject of creativity. The research only serves to back up what those two not only know but also espouse in their own lives.