Research has suggested that instructing subjects to
"be creative" enhances performance on alternate uses
creativity tasks. However, previous research has confounded
the effect of instructions to "be creative"
with the effects of guidelines defining response quality
criteria. These factors were separated by providing one
of four instructions to 132 college students: creativity
(C/NG), creativity plus guidelines (C/G), guidelines
only (S/G), or standard alternate uses instructions
(S/NG) that do not mention creativity or provide
guidelines. Results indicated that males performed best
in the C/G condition and females did so in the C/NG
condition; standard instructions were least beneficial in
eliciting maximal creative performance. The role of
instructions in improving valid assessment of creativity
is discussed. Suggestions for further research on the
observed sex differences in response to instructions
Evans, Ronald G & Forbach, Gary B. (1983). Facilitation of performance on a divergent measure of creativity: A closer look at instructions to "be creative." Applied Psychological Measurement, 7, 181-187. doi:10.1177/014662168300700206
Evans, Ronald G.; Forbach, Gary B..
Facilitation of performance on a divergent measure of creativity: A closer look at instructions to "be creative".
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