Enhancing creativity on different complexity levels by eliciting mental models

Malycha CP, Maier GW (2017)
Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts 11: 187-201.

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Journal Article | Original Article | Published | English
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Creativity is the result of applying and combining existing knowledge in a new way. This process becomes ever more challenging with increasing task complexity because of the concomitant increase in information density and interconnectedness. When one’s mental model is explicated, his or her underlying knowledge and the (network-like) relationships that constitute it becomes perceptible and thus easier to be applied creatively. In a 3 × 2 factorial experimental design with 121 students we tested the effect of making mental models explicit by mind-mapping on creative problem-solving. We assumed that the beneficial effects of mind-maps can be further enhanced by applying mind-map templates, which are presketched, blank mind-maps that are filled in by the user. As the first factor, we varied the type of support: A control, a classic mind-map, and a mind-map template group were compared. We also assumed that task complexity has a negative impact on creative problem-solving, which can be mitigated by mental models and their structural relationships which help the user to deal with increased complexity. As the second factor, we varied task complexity. Results showed a significant positive influence of mind-maps on creative problem-solving. Mind-map templates led to the highest levels of fluency and originality in more complex tasks. They seem to release the whole potential of the mind-map technique in such a way that the increase in information density and interconnectedness of more complex tasks is optimally exploited.
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Malycha CP, Maier GW. Enhancing creativity on different complexity levels by eliciting mental models. Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts. 2017;11:187-201.
Malycha, C. P., & Maier, G. W. (2017). Enhancing creativity on different complexity levels by eliciting mental models. Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts, 11, 187-201. doi:10.1037/aca0000080
Malycha, C. P., and Maier, G. W. (2017). Enhancing creativity on different complexity levels by eliciting mental models. Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts 11, 187-201.
Malycha, C.P., & Maier, G.W., 2017. Enhancing creativity on different complexity levels by eliciting mental models. Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts, 11, p 187-201.
C.P. Malycha and G.W. Maier, “Enhancing creativity on different complexity levels by eliciting mental models”, Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts, vol. 11, 2017, pp. 187-201.
Malycha, C.P., Maier, G.W.: Enhancing creativity on different complexity levels by eliciting mental models. Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts. 11, 187-201 (2017).
Malycha, Charlotte P., and Maier, Günter W. “Enhancing creativity on different complexity levels by eliciting mental models”. Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts 11 (2017): 187-201.
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