Can Creativity Be Taught?

Can Creativity Be Taught?

Legend has it that Paul McCartney composed the song "Yesterday" in a dream. Creativity rarely comes so easy, and tales like this might lead you to believe that some people are creative and some people just aren't. Fortunately, science shows this isn't true: a 2004 meta-analysis of 70 studies on creativity training found that well-designed programs really can help people think more creatively. The programs that were studied focused on improving such skills as divergent thinking (or coming up with multiple ideas for a given topic) and problem solving, and ended up boosting creative performance in students regardless of age, gender, and academic performance.

The Secret to Creativity

05:08

Key Facts In This Video

  • 1

    There's no one hemisphere or area of the brain that accounts for creativity. (1:20)

  • 2

    A wandering mind might help your brain to restructure the way you look at a problem, leading to a boost in creativity. (2:15)

  • 3

    One study found that families who collectively scored higher on creativity tests were more likely to have an extra copy of the glucose mutarotase gene. (2:43)

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