However, divergent thinking, as the precursor to convergent thinking and taking place within a creative problem-solving (or top-down engineering design) process, does not have the same complete freedom. To do so, we will focus on four areas in particular: Now here are four ways to improve the four areas above: “Synectics” is a term coined by psychologist William J. J. Gordon. The amount of new ideas is much higher than in convergent thinking, and the emphasis is placed on the overall picture of a situation, ideas, and problems. They concluded that the selection of tests is important even when they seem to measure same or similar skills. You could use it in an afternoon meeting, several times in a one-week sprint, or routinely across a two month project. It takes a lot of willpower and discipline. The term “divergent thinking” refers to that strategy of solving problems characterized by the proposal of a multiplicity of possible solutions in an attempt to determine the one that works. In no sense is this information intended to provide diagnoses or act as a substitute for the work of a qualified professional. Photo by Elvira Koneva / Shutterstock Divergent Thinking and Creativity. It involves breaking a topic down into its various component parts in order to gain insight about the various aspects of the topic. Rather, these constraints are the basis of the analysis that follows our divergent thinking, and knowing what they are is a necessary part of the engineering problem-solving process. Thus, there is no limit on the possible uses of a tin can, and no limit to the number of ways passengers could be carried. Many possible solutions are explored in a short amount of time, and unexpected connections are drawn. WHAT IS DIVERGENT THINKING? Problem-solving is defined the act of resolving a complex, ill-defined problem using new ideas that have been developed using multiple pieces of information and expertise in order to provide a framework for implementing a solution. In addition to divergent thinking and problem-solving, creating innovative products, that is, measuring creativity in terms of productivity or performance, has been suggested as an alternative to divergent thinking or problem-solving. Of course, these three explanations are not mutually exclusive, and possibly all contribute to divergent production. Edward de Bono (1993) made an interesting and popular contribution to the discussion of creative thinking. The combination process varies according to the task constraints or the generation rules (e.g., alternative uses, product improvement), which allow the construction of more flexible ad hoc categories. Table 5.2 lists examples of contrasting kinds of thinking favorable on the one hand for production of variability, on the other of orthodoxy. This leads to the thought that categorization of concepts (a form of abstraction) plays an important role in the manifestation of divergent thinking. Divergent thinking is important in today’s modern world. First, generating additional hypotheses in divergent trials requires their maintenance in working memory. People with “steep” semantic networks are governed more by logic and linear thinking. In traditional instruction, students are used to more analytical thinking or convergent thinking, but excellent problem solver also should have divergent thinking . It’s an ability. With our high-pressure, busy lives, we neglect many of these valuable dimensions. Decisions on what the next step should be are based on correctness, and this is decided in terms of absolute norms such as truth, justice, or beauty, which change only slowly. M.A. While convergent thinking relies more on logic, divergent thinking relies more on creativity. However, the real problem is that we’ve been “trained” to only think this way. Divergent thinking is the capacity to find relationships between ideas, concepts, and processes that, at first glance, lack any similarity. Because some of the resulting ideas are original, divergent thinking represents the potential for creative thinking and problem solving. Heilman, in Encyclopedia of Human Behavior (Second Edition), 2012. He argued that creativity is a natural resource and suggested that efforts to encourage creativity would pay high dividends to the whole of society. Some studies showed that, when subjects increased eye blink rates, their performance in the alternative uses test also increased (Akbari Chermahini & Hommel, 2010; Ueda, Tominaga, Kajimura, & Nomura, 2016), suggesting that spontaneous eye blinks are an index of attentional disengagement from the external world, implicating improvement in divergent thinking. Mumford, in Encyclopedia of Creativity (Second Edition), 2011. Articles and opinions on happiness, fear and other aspects of human psychology. It can be highly productive to think differently, and it pays off in the long run. Although Guilford emphasized the importance of training children in divergent thinking, educational institutions have paid little attention to him. Although I will deal with some other specific features of convergent thinking later in this chapter, I want to discuss some other kinds of thinking that are associated with the generation of variability and novelty. They may arrive at what appears to be wrong answers, but when asked, they can justify those answers in clear, logical reasoning. This selective impairment was especially apparent in patients with lesions to right ventral (as opposed to dorsal) prefrontal cortex (PFC). However, it is clear is that a person's productivity is an important aspect of their creative performance and should be included in an examination of the effectiveness of creativity training. Not surprisingly, divergent thinking tests are among the most commonly used in creativity research. Divergent thinking takes place in a free-flowing, spontaneous manner and creates varieties of possible resolutions to another problem. In many courses aimed at training people in divergent thinking, students are asked questions like the following: At the beginning, it may be hard to come up with even one idea. Avoid judging ideas as either bad or good in the divergent-thinking phase. One benefit of using performance as a criterion for creativity is that performance is ultimately the outcome of primary concern in real-world settings. Given that alpha wave activity is an inverse measure of cortical activity, this finding confirms that creativity is linked to task-related variation in cortical function. For example, let’s say we have to come up with an idea for work. They also showed that a divergent thinking test used with the openness test has validity when workplace criteria are used. It is very useful in creating something innovative and practicing divergent thinking. Problem finding, conceptual combination, and idea evaluation are only a few processes that have been identified as being important contributors to the creative process. It is the type of thinking that allows you to free-associate, to ‘go big’ and to discuss possible new ways to solve difficult challenges that have no single/right/known answer,” … This training intervention was designed by Feldhusen and colleagues in the early 1980s and consists of 28 lessons on audio tape. We use divergent thinking in the initial stages of ideation on a project or task—when we have a challenge to solve and we need to brainstorm or iterate on creative solutions. The use of lectures, A-V equipment, case-based material, or cooperative learning activities fall into this category. Greater alpha synchronization was especially prevalent in frontal areas of the brain. David H. Cropley, in Creativity in Engineering, 2015. Unlike divergent thinking with convergent thinking there is usually a correct answer. Secondly, divergent thinking extends the access to semantically distant categories. If convergent thinking is applied then after, the very best answer can be picked out from the multiple solutions resulted due to divergent thinking. Divergent thinking should be the basis of the generation phase, while convergent thinking should be the basis of the exploration phase. However, knowing that these constraints exist should not cause us to bypass divergent thinking. The key lies is in how we connect one idea to another. Divergent thinking refers to a way of solving problems wherein a variety of possible solutions are proposed in an effort to find one that works. All ideas are valid for idea stimulation in divergent thinking. However, assuming creativity is needed, and given that this article is focused on promoting creativity through training, it is valid to consider the degree to which creativity training helps people become more accepting of creative ideas. O. Vartanian, in Encyclopedia of Creativity (Second Edition), 2011. It is true that there are an infinite number of ways that passengers could be carried, but achieving a practical solution dictates that many of these will be rejected during the stage of convergent analysis that follows our divergent synthesis. As one generates more responses, the conflict of choosing between multiple responses would increase accordingly. “Divergent thinking is the process of coming up with new ideas and possibilities—without judgment, without analysis, without discussion. Rothenburg also introduced the term homospatial thinking. The Alternate Uses Test is one of the most popular divergent thinking tasks. 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