Effects of Cognitive Style And Context on Creativity.


The study examined the effects of cognitive style and context on students’ creativity using one hundred and twelve (112) participants drawn from Capital City Secondary School Awka, Nigeria.

Participant’s responses from the Group Embedded Figure Test (GEFT) and Divergent Thinking Task (DTT) used in measuring cognitive style and creativity respectively were subjected to 2-way- ANOVA statistical test.

The results of the analysis shows that a significant  main effect was observed for cognitive style, F (1, 108) = 8.07, p < .05 with   the field-independent (M = 13.63, SD = 3.50) performing better on creativity task than the field-dependent (M = 11.75, SD = 3.69), which confirmed hypothesis I.

Also, a significant main effect was observed for context, F (1,108) = 6.88, p < .05 with the same environmental context (M = 13.55, SD = 3.32) performing better on creativity task than the different environmental context (M = 11.82, SD = 3.89), which also confirmed hypothesis II.

The implications of the findings have shown that field-independent and field-dependent students perform differently to the same and different environmental context on creativity tasks. And, suggestions were made for further study.

Table Of Contents

Title Page                  i

Approval Page                    ii

Dedication                     iii

Acknowledgment   iv

Table of Content             vi

List of Tables                 viii

List of Appendices             ix

Abstract                 x


Introduction           1

Statement of Problem          16

Purpose of Study              17

Operational Definitions of Terms            18


Literature Review                    19

Theoretical Background              19

Empirical Review                       27

Summary of Literature Review       44

Hypotheses                  45


Method               46

Participants         46

Materials               46

Procedure                     49

Design/ Statistics             52


Results       53

Summary of the Findings            55


Discussion         56

Implication of Study           59

Limitations of Study        60

Suggestions for Further Research           60

Summary and Conclusion        61

REFERENCES          62

APPENDICES            81


Background Of Study

There has always been a great interest in how the great creative minds manage to invent something completely new.

Before now, scientific  researchers have worked with the questions, how it is possible to walk down a road no man has walked before, or to put ideas into a new perspective?

Unfortunately, these creative minds are mostly not able to explain how they came up with the  unexpected, or from what source they got their inspiration,  so creativity is still surrounded by a mystical atmosphere (Weisberg, 1993).

Creativity is one of the most complicated concepts in psychology. There is no universal agreement on what creativity actually is (Wallace, 1986).

Definitions of creativity differ, but they have in common their emphasis on people’s ability to produce products that are not only high in quality but also novel (Sternberg, 2001).

Thus, the concept of creativity is defined differently but nevertheless many authors agree that creativity involves characteristics connected with the ability to find or do something new.

The realization of the creative ability depends, not only on knowledge and skills, but also on the use of quick and different kinds of information found in tasks requiring this  ability.

Creativity is that characteristic of human behavior that seems the most mysterious, and yet most critical to human advancement.


Allen, T. J. (1973). Communication networks in R & D laboratories. R&D Management 1:14-21.

Allen, T. J. (1977). Managing the Flow of Technology. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

Alvermann, D. E., & Boothby, P. R. (1986). Children’s transfer of graphic organizer instruction. Reading Psychology, 7(2), 87-100.

Amabile, T. M. (1983). The Social Psychology of Creativity. New York, Springer-Verlag

Amabile, T. M. (1994). The “Atmosphere of pure work”: Creativity in research and development. In: W.R. Shadish and S. Fuller (Eds.), The Social Psychology of Science. New York, Guilford Press.

Amabile, T. M. (1998). How to kill creativity. Harvard Business Review Sept- Oct: 77-87.

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