ArticlePDF Available

Fostering Creativity in the Classroom: Effects of Teachers' Epistemological Beliefs, Motivation, and Goal Orientation



The relationships of teachers' epistemological beliefs, motivation, and goal orientation to their instructional practices that foster student creativity were examined. Teachers' perceived instructional practices that facilitate the development of multiple perspectives in problem solving, transfer, task commitment, creative skill use, and collaboration were measured as indicators of their effort to foster creative thinking in students. Participants were 178 elementary-school teachers of third-, fourth-, and fifth-graders. Teachers' learning goal orientation was the most significant teacher attribute that demonstrated significant impacts on all five creativity-fostering instructional practices. Teachers with sophisticated beliefs about knowledge and with high intrinsic motivation for creative work also reported supporting student creativity through some of their instructional practices. However, teachers' motivation for challenging work, beliefs about learning, or performance goals did not significantly predict most of the creativity-fostering instructional practices. Educational implications of the current findings are offered.
Journal of Creative Behavior
1Volume __ Number ___ _______ Quarter 2009
Fostering Creativity in the Classroom:
Effects of Teachers’ Epistemological beliefs,
Motivation, and Goal Orientation
The relationships of teachers’ epistemological beliefs, motivation, and goal
orientation to their instructional practices that foster student creativity were
examined. Teachers’ perceived instructional practices that facilitate the develop-
ment of multiple perspectives in problem solving, transfer, task commitment,
creative skill use, and collaboration were measured as indicators of their effort
to foster creative thinking in students. Participants were 178 elementary-school
teachers of third-, fourth-, and fifth-graders. Teachers’ learning goal orientation
was the most significant teacher attribute that demonstrated significant impacts
on all five creativity-fostering instructional practices. Teachers with sophisticated
beliefs about knowledge and with high intrinsic motivation for creative work
also reported supporting student creativity through some of their instructional
practices. However, teachers’ motivation for challenging work, beliefs about
learning, or performance goals did not significantly predict most of the creativity-
fostering instructional practices. Educational implications of the current findings
were offered.
In the creativity-fostering classroom, teachers generate and maintain a climate
in which creative thinkers are respected, students tolerate new ideas, conformity
is not imposed, and diversity in ideas is encouraged and appreciated (Cropley,
2006). Teachers can improve creative thinking in students by providing choices,
rewarding different ideas and products, encouraging sensible risks, and empha-
sizing students’ strengths and interests (de Souza Fleith, 2000; Kaufman &
Sternberg, 2007). With increasing diversity in the classroom, teachers can utilize
the positive aspects of cultural diversity that can benefit all students and make
efforts to promote creative problem solving and idea generation among students
(Leung, Maddux, Galinsky, & Chiu, 2008). Furthermore, when teachers construct
real and critical events, model their own creativity for students, and use space
creatively, creative learning is likely to occur (Jeffrey, 2006; Rejskind, 2000).
Hong - Fostering Creativity.P65 2/9/2009, 5:47 PM1
Teacher Attributes and Instruction for Creativity
Unfortunately, the majority of teachers prefer a classroom full of intellectual,
high-achieving students to those who are highly creative and unconventional
(Davis & Rimm, 1994). Some teachers see creative children as a source of inter-
ference or sometime incorrectly identify them as having impulsive/hyperactive
or disruptive behavior (Brandau et al., 2007; Scott, 1999). With these observa-
tions, it is not too surprising to read Schacter, Thum, and Zifkin’s (2006) report
that the majority of elementary-school teachers do not implement strategies that
foster creativity in students.
Stein and Poole (1997) challenge teachers to question their teaching practices
and views concerning student learning. Along with other recommendations by
creativity scholars introduced above, Stein and Poole recommend that teachers
create classroom environments to meet individual students’ interests and needs,
design curriculum to ensure open-ended activities, and utilize real-life contexts
for assessing and reporting learning outcomes. These strategies help students
not only become more versed in creative thinking, but also situate them in an
environment that fosters creativity.
Although there are suggestions as to what instructional strategies may improve
creativity in students, there is a paucity of studies investigating teacher character-
istics which impact their creativity-fostering instructional practices. Teacher char-
acteristics studied in the past that are considered effective include enthusiasm,
a sense of humor, empathy, accepting and caring, openness, or dedication to
students, which place high value on interpersonal relationships (McGreevy, 1990;
Whitlock & DuCette, 1989). However, cognitive-motivational constructs that have
been studied in recent years in education and psychology have not been exam-
ined regarding their relationships to creativity-fostering instructional practices.
The current research focused on teachers’ epistemological beliefs, intrinsic moti-
vation, and goal orientation as these constructs have been widely studied to
examine their effects on student learning (Amabile, 1996; Dweck & Leggett, 1988).
Due to the paucity of research on relationships between teacher characteristics
and creativity-fostering instructional practices, we first review instructional
approaches related to creative thinking, followed by teachers’ beliefs and attributes.
Of the instructional strategies that facilitate the development of creative
thinking and the formation of creative habits discussed in the literature (e.g., Daiute
& Dalton, 1993; Renzulli, Smith, White, Callahan, Hartman, & Westberg, 2002),
we directed our focus on multiple perspectives in problem solving, transfer of
knowledge to different situations, task commitment, creative skill use, and
Multiple perspectives in problem solving. Creative thinkers generate not only
novel ideas but multiple, divergent ideas (Guilford, 1967). Runco (2003) defines
being creative as a type of problem solving that involves the construction of new
meaning. Creative thinkers across a wide age range demonstrate abilities in real-
life problem-solving in various domains (e.g., social leadership, mathematics,
Hong - Fostering Creativity.P65 2/9/2009, 5:47 PM2
Journal of Creative Behavior
sales, and management) as indicated by their ability to produce original and
divergent solutions to problems posed to them (Hong & Milgram, 2008). As shown
in meta-analytic studies (Ma, 2006), training to improve creative thinking has
shown positive effects in increasing creative problem-solving skills (Chen, Himsel,
Kasof, Greenberger, & Dmitrieva, 2006), although effect sizes varied for domain-
general, domain-specific, or task-specific problems (Baer & Kaufman, 2005).
Transfer of knowledge and strategies. Transfer indicates the ability to take
knowledge or strategies gained in one situation and apply it to a different situa-
tion. With the flexible or divergent use of knowledge, skills, and strategies, stu-
dents are able to transfer their learning to different situations. Gifted students
often demonstrate higher ability to transfer strategies to novel tasks as compared
to average students (Carr, Alexander, & Schwanenflugel, 1996). Strategy transfer
can be trained to all levels of students including gifted and average students, as
well as those with learning difficulties (Ferretti & Butterfield, 1992).
Task commitment. Renzulli (2002) defines task commitment as the capacity
for high levels of interest, hard work and determination, self-confidence and
the drive to achieve, the ability to identify significant problems, and setting high
standards for one’s work. Task commitment is an essential attribute of children
for their achievement (Lee-Corbin & Denicolo, 1998). Task commitment is also
an important characteristic of resilient people, along with the desire to learn,
reflectiveness, maturity, and self-understanding (Bland, Sowa, & Callahan, 1994).
Feldhusen (1995) contends that students need to commit themselves to develop-
ing their creativity and talent and that providing challenging tasks is an effective
way to encourage commitment.
Creative skill use. To help students realize creative-thinking ability, students
must be given opportunities to use it. Giftedness, as determined by test scores
and good grades, is only weakly associated with adult creative contributions
(Siegler & Kotovsky, 1986; Sternberg, 1987). Challenging activities that creative
children engage in are often done to satisfy their own curiosity and interests, rather
than to achieve high grades or satisfy their teachers and parents (Hong, Milgram,
& Whiston, 1993). Longitudinal studies provide evidence of the predictive validity
of challenging activities, as indicated by strong correlations between creative
activities in various domains and career choice and accomplishment in corre-
sponding domains (Milgram & Hong, 1999). Encouraging children to participate
in activities in school and out of school in a domain of their interest increases
opportunities for them to use creative thinking and skills. Teachers can help stu-
dents improve creativity by providing challenging and interesting tasks in the
classroom that require creative skill use.
Collaboration. Collaboration is often viewed as a catalyst in the creative pro-
cess. The open exchange of ideas can serve to enhance learning for all members
of the group (Webb & Palincsar, 1996). Daiute and Dalton (1993) explain how
peer collaboration may be effective at increasing awareness of students’ inert
knowledge. Brainstorming as a form of collaborative work among group mem-
bers has been used widely as a component in creative training (e.g., Parnes, 1988;
Hong - Fostering Creativity.P65 2/9/2009, 5:47 PM3
Teacher Attributes and Instruction for Creativity
Treffinger, Isaksen, & Dorval, 2003). These collaborative activities provide indi-
vidual students with opportunities to increase creative abilities and skills. How-
ever, effects of brainstorming in creative production are not consistent. Group
cohesiveness, for example, is important factor affecting the effectiveness of brain-
storming. Group members work hard and produce more ideas in the highly cohe-
sive group as compared to the less cohesive group (Yip, Chow, Cheng, Cheuk, &
McBride-Chang, 2007). Moreover, classroom environments that require collabo-
ration have received warning flags for their negative influence on high achievers
partly due to the lack of group cohesiveness. Lack of academic challenge can
lead to boredom among students and such negative experiences can further lead
them to frustration, isolation, or depression (Baker, Bridger, & Evans, 1998; Clasen
& Clasen, 1995).
Numerous psychological constructs have been studied to determine their
relationships with students’ academic achievement and behaviors. Self-regulated
learning, motivation, epistemological beliefs, and goal orientation are among those
that have demonstrated their effects on student learning (Amabile, 1996; Brophy,
2005). In this study, we addressed teachers’ epistemological beliefs, intrinsic
motivation, and goal orientations to determine whether these characteristics have
any relationships to their instruction practices for facilitating the development of
creative thinking in students. Due to the lack of studies with teachers on these
constructs, we reviewed literature on students as well as teachers.
Epistemological beliefs. Epistemological beliefs — beliefs about the nature of
knowledge and knowing — influence learning and achievement (e.g., Hofter &
Pintrich, 1997). Individuals with naïve beliefs tend to oversimplify information and
perform more poorly than those with sophisticated beliefs (Kardash & Howell,
2000). Classroom interactions between teachers and students influence the
development of epistemological beliefs (Posner, Strike, Hewson, and Gerzog.
1982). By providing a proper learning environment and by encouraging students
to explicitly reflect on their epistemological beliefs, teachers can promote changes
in students’ epistemological beliefs (Brownlee, Purdie, & Boulton-Lewis, 2001).
Shommer (1990, 1994) proposed a multidimensional conceptualization of
epistemological beliefs, with five dimensions in her earlier work (Schommer, 1994)
and four dimensions in the later work (Schommer, Calvert, Gariglietti, & Bajaj,
1997). The four dimensions include beliefs in simple knowledge (knowledge
is characterized as isolated pieces versus knowledge is complex), beliefs in
certain knowledge (knowledge is absolute versus knowledge is uncertain),
beliefs in quick learning (learning is quick or not at all versus knowledge is
constructed through learning processes), and beliefs in fixed ability (ability to
learn is innate versus ability is malleable) (Schommer & Walker, 1995). Individu-
als’ epistemological beliefs vary along a continuum of naïve to sophisticated
beliefs in these dimensions.
However, the dimensions advanced by Schommer have been challenged. Hofer
and Pintrich (1997) distinguished the nature of learning (beliefs in fixed ability
Hong - Fostering Creativity.P65 2/9/2009, 5:47 PM4
Journal of Creative Behavior
and quick learning) from the nature of knowledge (beliefs in certain knowledge
and simple knowledge) and other findings also have challenged Shommer’s
dimensions (Qian & Alvermann, 1995). With these theoretical and empirical back-
grounds, we examined two higher order components of teachers’ epistemologi-
cal beliefs — the nature of knowledge and the nature of learning — to determine
how they are related to teachers’ creativity-fostering instructional practices. To
our knowledge, studies of the relationship between epistemological beliefs and
creativity have not been conducted.
Intrinsic motivation. Intrinsically motivated individuals are curious, interested,
and enjoy the tasks in which they are engaged. By contrast, extrinsically moti-
vated individuals engage in tasks with the goal of seeking rewards (Wigfied &
Guthrie, 1997). A recent study (Vansteenkiste, Timmermans, Lens, Soenens, &
Van den Broek, 2008) report the advantage of intrinsic motivation over extrinsic
motivation in learning, suggesting that teachers can promote intrinsic goals, even
when students hold a strong extrinsic goal orientation. Creatively talented people
are intrinsically motivated. They exhibit high interest and enjoyment in what they
choose to do (Amabile, 1996; Winner, 1996). Although effects of intrinsic motiva-
tion on creativity have been discussed, intrinsic motivation distinguished in its
manifestation in challenging versus creative work has not been investigated. In
this study, we examined two types of intrinsic motivation in their relationship to
teachers’ instructions fostering creativity: (a) motivation as manifested by enjoy-
ing or favoring challenging work and (b) motivation as manifested by enjoying
or favoring creative work.
Goal orientation. Goals provide a framework within which a person interprets
and responds to events and results in a unique pattern of cognition, behavior, and
affect (Dweck & Leggett, 1988). Two types of goal orientations have been dis-
cussed widely — learning/mastery goal orientation and performance goal orien-
tations. Goal orientation is also described in terms of approach (e.g., a person is
motivated by the desire to approach success) or avoidance (i.e., a person is
motivated by the desire to avoid failure) (Elliot & McGregor, 2001). Students with
learning goals define success as mastering or learning something new, thus
facilitating the development of competence and task mastery, whereas students
with performance goals demonstrate their competence relative to others (Midgley
& Urdan, 1995).
Learning and performance goals are positively and negatively related to intrin-
sic motivation, respectively (Colquitt & Simmering, 1998; ValldeWalle &
Cummings, 1997). Building on these findings, Farr, Sin, and Tesluk (2003) sug-
gest that during creative process, individuals with learning goal orientations are
likely more active participants in creative thinking such as idea generation. Teach-
ers who promote learning goals have a tendency to structure classroom environ-
ments that require student involvement, encourage student interaction, emphasize
effort, and describe learning as an active process (Patrick, Anderman, Ryan,
Edelin, & Midgley, 2001). Teachers who focus on performance goals tend to con-
centrate their efforts on formal assessments, grades, and the relative performance
Hong - Fostering Creativity.P65 2/9/2009, 5:47 PM5
Teacher Attributes and Instruction for Creativity
of their students (Patrick et al., 2001). Understanding teachers’ goal orientation
is important because classroom processes and task/goal structures that teach-
ers establish affect students’ reasoning and thinking (Ames & Archer, 1988; Nolen,
We examined the relationships of teachers’ epistemological beliefs (beliefs about
knowledge versus about learning), intrinsic motivation (challenging work versus
creative work), and goal orientation (learning versus performance goals) to their
instructional practices that facilitate the development of creative thinking in stu-
dents. Five facilitating instructional practices examined in the study were mul-
tiple perspectives in problem solving, transfer, task commitment, creative skill
use, and collaboration. Based on the theoretical and empirical work, we predicted
that teachers with higher epistemological sophistication, motivation for creative
work, and learning goal orientation would self-rate higher on the measures of
creativity-fostering instructional approaches.
Participants were 178 elementary-school teachers of third-, fourth-, and
fifth-graders from a large metropolitan school district. The elementary teachers
consisted of 142 (80%) female and 34 (19%) male teachers (2 unspecified). The
majority of teachers were Caucasian-American (150; 84%). Ages of teachers
varied widely from 21-25 (11; 6%), 26-30 (25; 14%), 31-35 (33; 19%), 36-40
(29; 16%), 41-45 (22; 12%), and 46 and higher (56; 32%), with 2 cases (1%) of
unspecified age. Participants’ teaching experience (defined as the number of years
teaching) ranged from less than one year to 37 years, with a median of 9 years.
Fifty-one teachers (29%) had up to 5 years of teaching experience, 52 (29%) 6
to 10 years, 20 (11%) 11-15 years, 21 (12%) 16-20 years, 8 (5%) 21 to 25 years, 16
(9%) 26-30 years, and 7 (4%) 31 to 37 years (3 unspecified). Seven participants
were removed from data analyses due to incomplete responses (e.g., skipping
an item or a page), thus not yielding scores for all variables required in the
current study. Inspection of these cases indicated that the missing items/pages
were random.
Instructional Practices Questionnaire I (IPQ-I, Hong, Hartzell, & Nadelson,
2005, 2006). The IPQ-I measured teachers’ perceived instructional practices that
facilitate the development of creative thinking in students. The questionnaire
has 30 items measuring 5 constructs (6 items per construct). The questionnaire
begins with a general stem (“Students in my class are given opportunities
to”) followed by items. Examples of items are: “solve problems that have
more than one answer” (Multiple perspectives in problem solving); “apply their
Hong - Fostering Creativity.P65 2/9/2009, 5:47 PM6
Journal of Creative Behavior
knowledge and skills in different or unfamiliar situations” (Transfer); “do their
best to complete tasks” (Task commitment); “demonstrate brainstorming skills”
(Creative skill use); and “work in groups” (Collaboration). Exploratory factor
analysis (EFA) for each subscale produced one-factor structure with 46%, 40%,
34%, 43%, and 50% explained variance, respectively. Participants responded to
each item by rating their perception of students’ opportunities to receive these
instructions on the following 4-point scale: (1) Almost never, (2) Sometimes,
(3) Often, and (4) Almost always, indicating a continuum of increasing levels of
intensity. Internal consistency estimates (coefficient alpha) of subscale scores
ranged from .75 to .85 (Mdn = .80).
Epistemological Beliefs in Teaching and Learning (EBTL; Hong & Nadelson,
2005, 2006). The EBTL questionnaire was developed based on Schommer (1990)
and Wood and Kardash (2002), by modifying items to measure classroom teach-
ers’ beliefs about student learning. Following recent empirical and theoretical works
on epistemological beliefs, two subscale scores were computed: beliefs about
the nature of knowledge (9 items) and beliefs about the nature of learning
(10 items). Empirical factors were not as well defined (i.e., a complex structure
emerged). However, one-factor structure in each subscale was acceptable with
21% and 37% explained variances, respectively.
Examples of the items on beliefs about the nature of knowledge are: “When
I teach, I prefer to make things as simple as possible” and “It’s a waste of time
for students to work on problems that have no possibility of coming out with a
clear-cut answer.” Sample items for beliefs about the nature of learning are: “If
students don’t understand material right away, repeating the same material usu-
ally doesn’t help” and “Smart students don’t have to study very hard to get good
grades.” Participants responded to each item by rating themselves on a four-point
Likert scale of agreement: (1) Strongly disagree, (2) Disagree, (3) Agree, and
(4) Strongly agree. Internal consistency estimates of scores was .65 and .85 for
nature of knowledge and nature of learning, respectively.
Self Assessment Questionnaire (SAQ): Intrinsic Motivation (Hong, 2001,
2004). The intrinsic motivation subscale in the SAQ was used to measure partici-
pants’ motivational inclination in two areas — enjoying or favoring “challenging”
work and enjoying or favoring “creative” work. The items about challenge were
modified from the Work Preference Inventory by Amabile, Hill, Hennessey, and
Tighe (1994). The items about enjoying work that required creativity were devel-
oped by the first author. The subscale consisted of 8 items; 4 items regarded the
former (e.g., “I enjoy working on complex tasks”) and 4 items regarded the latter
(e.g., “I prefer the kind of work for which I can use my imagination or creative
thinking”). Two-factor structure emerged from EFA (66% explained variance),
although two creative items loaded on both factors. One item involved solving
open-ended problems that have many different answers and the other involved
coming up with new solutions. Inherently, most work involving creativity are chal-
lenging, although challenging works may or may not require creative thinking.
Thus, these two items remained as “creative” items.
Hong - Fostering Creativity.P65 2/9/2009, 5:47 PM7
Teacher Attributes and Instruction for Creativity
Participants responded to each item by indicating how they generally think or
feel on the following 4-point scale: (1) Almost never, (2) Sometimes, (3) Often,
and (4) Almost always. Internal consistency estimates of the scores for motiva-
tion for challenging and creative work were .84 and .76, respectively.
Instructional Practices Questionnaire II (IPQ-II, Hong, Nadelson, & Hartzell,
2005, 2006). The IPQ-II measured teachers’ goal orientations as they are
manifested in their perceived instructional practices in processing and structur-
ing tasks and instructional materials for their students. This questionnaire con-
sisted of 24 items measuring two subscale constructs, 12 items each for learning
and performance goals, respectively. The EFA extracted two non-overlapping
factors (41% of variance explained). The questionnaire began with a general
stem (“In my class…”) followed by items. Examples of these items are: “I select
challenging instructional materials for my classes” (learning goal orientation)
and “I focus on students’ test performance because good test scores indicate
that I taught well” (performance goal orientation). Participants responded
to each item by rating their classroom practices on the following scale: (1) Not
at all true, (2) Seldom true, (3) Somewhat true, and (4) Very true. Internal
consistency estimates of scores on learning and performance goals were .87 and
.87, respectively.
Data collection. In an effort to distribute questionnaires to third-, fourth-, and
fifth-grade teachers evenly, volunteers were sought at regional meetings of
resource room teachers of gifted students. Packets of survey instruments were
distributed to teachers attending the meetings who volunteered to distribute them
at the school sites they served. These packets contained consent forms and seven
questionnaire packets; two packets for two teachers of each grade and one packet
for the resource room teacher who volunteered to distribute the packets. With the
permission of the school administrators, volunteers were sought in each grade.
The completed questionnaires were then returned to the researchers through the
school district’s inter-school mail delivery system.
Data analysis. Simultaneous multiple regression analyses were performed to
examine the research questions. Intercorrelations among predictors ranged from
.02 to .66 in absolute value, with a median correlation of .22. Subscale correla-
tions were .53 for epistemological beliefs, .66 for intrinsic motivation, and .26 for
goal orientation. With the current scale (all continuous) for predictors and crite-
rion, correlation patterns, and sample size, simultaneous regression analysis was
a proper choice for significance testing. Assumptions for regression analysis were
tested. Skewness and kurtosis on each variable ranged from .07 to .92, with an
exception of one variable with 1.13. Although there were univariate outliers (one
with a z score larger than 3 and a few between 2 and 3), influence analyses
indicated that none of the univariate outliers were influential. Thus, all cases were
included for analyses. Linearity, homoscedasticity, and multicollinearity (toler-
ance value and variance inflation factor) assumptions were largely met.
Hong - Fostering Creativity.P65 2/9/2009, 5:47 PM8
Journal of Creative Behavior
Before attempting to adjust for differences in teaching experience among
participants, preliminary analyses of correlations between years of teaching and
the dependent measures were conducted. None of the correlation coefficients
were larger than .30, thus inclusion of years of teaching would not increase
the precision of the study (Pedhazur, 1997). Following the estimation of internal
consistency for each construct, five regression models were tested for each
dependent measure of instructional approaches with six teacher characteristics
as independent variables.
Mean scores and correlations between the variables are presented in Table 1.
A preliminary inspection of the mean scores indicated that epistemological
beliefs about both the nature of knowledge and learning were below mean, sug-
gesting that teachers in general have more sophisticated than naïve epistemo-
logical beliefs. Mean scores of instructional practices ranged from 3.04 to 3.19 (of
a maximum score of 4), indicating that on average, elementary teachers per-
ceived themselves as highly involved in the instructional practices examined in
the study.
Correlations among predictors (teacher characteristics) ranged from .02 to
.67 (median .22, in absolute values). Correlations between dependent variables
(instructional practices) and predictors ranged from .001 to .63 (median .27,
in absolute values). Teachers’ performance goal orientation demonstrated low
and nonsignificant correlations with all dependent variables, ps > .05, rs ranging
from .001 to .08, whereas learning goal orientation had high correlations, rs
ranging from .34 to .63, followed by motivations for creative work, rs ranging
from .33 to .50.
Whether teachers’ beliefs and attributes predict perceived use of instructional
approaches that foster creativity in students was examined next. We present the
findings for each instructional approach.
Multiple Perspectives
Variance of multiple perspectives in problem solving accounted for by the six
teacher characteristics (R2 = 34%) indicated that the effect size is large (Cohen,
1992) and statistically significant, F(6, 164) = 15.40, p < .0005. Teachers’ intrin-
sic motivation as manifested in their self-reported enjoyment of creative work
(ß = .40, p = .001) and learning goal orientation as manifested in their self-
reported classroom process and task structure (ß = .33, p = .001) were the two
strongest teacher characteristics that predicted perceived instructional practice
fostering multiple perspective in problem solving. Teachers’ beliefs about the
nature of knowledge had a negative effect (ß = –.18, p = .03), indicating that
teachers who scored high (indicating naïve beliefs) on the nature of knowledge
(knowledge is simple or certain) scored lower on perceived instructional practice
fostering multiple perspectives. Other predictors were not significant in their rela-
tionship with the instructional approach for multiple perspectives (see Table 2).
Hong - Fostering Creativity.P65 2/9/2009, 5:47 PM9
Teacher Attributes and Instruction for Creativity
TABLE 1. Means and Standard Deviations and Bivariate Correlations Between Six Predictors and Six Dependent
Variables MSD1234567891011
1. EB knowledge 1.98 .32 __
2. EB learning 1.75 .42 .53 __
3. Motivation challenge 3.01 .59 –.21 –.20 __
4. Motivation creativity 2.42 .55 –.19 –.22 .67 __
5. Learning goal 3.37 .38 –.15 a –.27 .32 .46 __
6. Performance goal 2.42 .57 .38 .03a.09 a –.02 a .26 __
7. Multiple perspectives 3.06 .49 –.26 –.18 .28 .50 .47 –.03 a __
8. Transfer 3.15 .45 –.25 –.25 .28 .45 .61 .00 a .77 __
9. Task commitment 3.10 .45 –.19 –.19 .29 .41 .63 .08 a .63 .65 __
10. Creative skill use 3.19 .47 –.25 –.24 .28 .48 .57 .04 a .81 .77 .70 __
11. Collaboration 3.04 .53 –.24 –.23 .37 .33 .34 .03 a .62 .57 .58 .65 __
Note. EB knowledge = Epistemological beliefs in nature of knowledge; EB learning = Epistemological beliefs in nature
of learning; Motivation challenge = Intrinsic motivation – enjoying challenging work; Motivation creativity = Intrinsic
motivation — enjoying creative work; Learning goal = Learning goal orientation reflected in teachers’ instructional
approach in classroom; Performance goal = performance goal orientation; Multiple perspectives = Multiple perspec-
tives in problem solving.
a Not significant at the .05 significance level. The rest of the correlation coefficients are significant at .05.
Hong - Fostering Creativity.P65 2/9/2009, 5:47 PM10
Journal of Creative Behavior
TABLE 2. Simultaneous Multiple Regression Predicting Teachers’ Instructional Approach to Facilitate Creative
Multiple Task Creative
perspectives Transfer commitment skill use Collaboration
Variables bbp bb p bbp bb p bbp
EB knowledge –.28 –.18 .03 –.15 –.11 .16 –.13 –.09 .25 –.23 –.16 .05 –.20 –.12 .18
EB learning .07 .06 .45 –.02 –.02 .77 .04 .04 .59 –.00 –.00 .97 –.08 –.06 .49
challenge –.10 –.12 .18 –.05 –.07 .41 .01 .02 .84 –.09 –1.11 .20 .21 .23 .02
creativity .36 .40 .001
.19 .24 .006 .10 .12 .15 .28 .33 .001
.05 .05 .61
Learning goal .43 .33 .001
.62 .53 .001
.67 .57 .001
.53 .43 .001
.29 .21 .01
goal –.04 –.04 .58 –.07 –.09 .18 –.04 –.04 .54 –.00 –.01 .95 –.01 –.01 .92
, F .34 .36 15.40 .42 .44 21.50 .40 .42 19.82 .39 .41 19.11 .19 .22 7.50
Note. The degrees of freedom for F statistic were 6 and 164; all ps < .0005 for F statistics. EB knowledge = Epistemo-
logical beliefs in nature of knowledge; EB learning = Epistemological beliefs in nature of learning; Motivation challenge
= Intrinsic motivation – enjoying challenging work; Motivation creativity = Intrinsic motivation – enjoying creative work;
Learning goal = Learning goal orientation reflected in teachers’ instructional approach in classroom; Performance goal
= performance goal orientation.
a p < .001.
Hong - Fostering Creativity.P65 2/9/2009, 5:47 PM11
Teacher Attributes and Instruction for Creativity
Forty-two percent of variance in teachers’ instructional practice that foster
transfer of knowledge and strategies in students was attributed to six teacher
characteristics, indicating practical as well as statistical significance, F(6, 164) =
21.50, p < .0005. As in the analysis of multiple perspectives, teachers’ intrinsic
motivation for creative work (ß = .24, p = .006) and their learning goal orientation
(ß = .53, p < .001) predicted strongly reported instructional practices fostering
knowledge and strategy transfer. No other predictors demonstrated a significant
relationship with the instruction for transfer (see Table 2).
Forty percent of variance in teachers’ instructional practice that promote stu-
dents’ commitment to task was accounted for by all predictors, indicating both
practical and statistical significance, F(6, 164) = 19.82, p < .0005. However, only
one teacher attribute, learning goal orientation, predicted task commitment
significantly (ß = .57, p < .001) (see Table 2).
Creative Skill Use
Six teacher characteristics together accounted for 39% of variance in teachers’
instructional practice that foster creative skill use in students, F(6, 164) = 19.11, p
< .0005. Teachers’ beliefs about the nature of knowledge (ß = -.16, p = .05), moti-
vation for creative work (ß = .33, p < .001), and learning goal orientation (ß = .43,
p < .001) predicted significantly perceived instructional practices fostering cre-
ative skill use (see Table 2). Teachers with more sophisticated beliefs about knowl-
edge, higher motivation for creative work, and more learning-goal orientation in
their class structure reported encouraging students to use creative skills more so
than their peers with lower scores in these attributes.
Lastly, 19% of variance in teachers’ instructional practices that promote
collaboration among students was predicted by all six teacher characteristics,
F(6, 164) = 7.50, p < .0005. Teachers’ learning goal orientation (ß = .21, p = .01)
as well as motivation for challenging work (ß = .23, p = .02) predicted signifi-
cantly perceived instructional practices that facilitate peer collaboration. Unlike
other findings, motivation for creative work was not statistically significant,
p > .60 (see Table 2).
Teacher characteristics, collectively, accounted for a statistically significant
as well as practically significant proportion of variances in each of the five in-
structional practices examined in the study with elementary teachers. However,
some individual teacher attributes were more strongly predictive of instructional
practices than were others, and some did not significantly predict teachers’
instructional practices. We present the findings by drawing attention to each
Hong - Fostering Creativity.P65 2/9/2009, 5:47 PM12
Journal of Creative Behavior
teacher characteristics, starting with the strongest attribute that demonstrated its
effects on elementary teachers’ creativity-fostering instructional practices.
Learning Goal Orientation
Of the six teacher characteristics, teachers’ goal orientation toward learning,
as reflected in their self-report of course and task structure in their classes, con-
sistently predicted all five creativity-fostering instructional approaches. Effect sizes
were consistently medium to large, with standardized regression coefficients rang-
ing from .33 to .57 (mdn = .42), except for one instructional practice involving
collaboration (.21). Teachers with higher learning-goal scores reported that they
provide instruction that fosters multiple perspectives in problem solving, transfer
of learned materials to new or different situations, commitment to tasks, use of
creative skills, and collaboration among students. Overall, teachers’ own learn-
ing goals, as compared to other attributes, was the most significant predictor of
their instructional practices that foster creative thinking in students.
Previous findings indicate that individuals with learning goal orientations likely
involve themselves more actively in learning (Midgley & Urdan, 1995), creative
thinking (Farr et al., 2003) and creative activities (Hoang, 2008). The contention
is further supported by the current study.
Motivation for Creative Work
Teachers who enjoy work that requires creativity tend to provide instruction
that increases creative thinking in students. However, this effect was present only
on three of the five instructional approaches — multiple perspectives in problem
solving, transfer of learned knowledge to new situations, and use of creative skill
— all with medium to large effect sizes (.24 to .40). In general, the findings are not
surprising in that multiple perspectives, transfer, and creative skill use require
creative/divergent thinking since they involve processing or producing more than
one way of solving problems or involve more than one learning situation. Teach-
ers enjoying creative work might have easily or naturally used their personal
creative tendencies to provide these types of instructional activities in their
On the other hand, instruction that encourages collaboration among students
may or may not require a creative tendency in teachers. Collaborative activities
have been viewed as important to elicit creative thinking (Webb & Palincsar, 1996).
Brainstorming is one of the examples that show a strong relationship between
group collaboration and creative outcome (Treffinger et al., 2003). However, col-
laborative activities in classrooms have also shown their negative effects, espe-
cially in high ability students, when such activities were not used prudently (Baker
et al., 1998). The current finding indicates that elementary teachers who are
motivated in creative work do not necessarily promote collaboration among
students, a relationship that warrants further understanding.
The finding that instructional practices for facilitating task-commitment were
not predicted by the creative tendency in teachers was surprising. Other studies
(e.g., Feldhusen, 1995) have indicated the strong presence of task commitment
Hong - Fostering Creativity.P65 2/9/2009, 5:47 PM13
Teacher Attributes and Instruction for Creativity
in creative individuals. Perhaps in classroom environment, task commitment is
viewed by teachers as diligence or thoroughness that may not rise up the level of
commitment required for creative process and production. This finding warrants
further investigation.
Beliefs about the Nature of Knowledge
Teachers who have more sophisticated personal beliefs about knowledge tended
to self-report as applying instructional approaches that support using multiple
perspectives in problem solving and creative skills in the classroom. That is, teach-
ers who perceive their instruction as enhancing student learning by more than
merely imparting factual and simplistic knowledge are more likely to involve stu-
dents in using or increasing creative ability and skills. However, the effect sizes
were small, indicating elementary teachers’ beliefs about the nature of knowl-
edge and creativity-inducing instruction are not strongly related to an extent that
matter practically. Additional studies may clarify the small practical significance
found in the current study.
Beliefs about the Nature of Learning, Motivation for
Challenging Work, and Performance Goal Orientation
Interestingly, the rest of the six teacher characteristics — beliefs about the
nature of learning, motivation toward challenging work, and performance goal
orientation — demonstrated minimum or no effects on teachers’ reported instruc-
tional effort to foster creative thinking in students. Although teacher’s motivation
for challenging work is a desirable attribute in student achievement, as far as its
relationship to creativity-fostering instruction was concerned, only one instruc-
tional practice was strongly related to this attribute — helping students to be
collaborative in the classroom. By contrast, teachers’ motivation for creative work
was not related to instruction promoting collaboration. One would deem that
intrinsically motivated individuals would enjoy working on both challenging and
creative work (Amabile, 1996), as work that requires creativity is challenging and
challenging work may require a certain level creativity to perform well. However,
in the current study with elementary teachers in the context of classroom teach-
ing, the two types of work that induce intrinsic motivation were distinguished in
their relationship to creativity-fostering instruction.
Lastly, teachers’ performance goal orientation did not predict any one of the
creativity-fostering instructional approaches. Performance goal orientation has
been found to have low or negative impact on student learning and achievement
(Midgley & Urdan, 1995). The current findings indicate that this pattern applies
also to teachers in regard to their creativity-fostering instructional practices.
Limitations and Future Research
Teachers’ instructional practices are influenced by many factors. We focused
on examining six teacher characteristics. Future studies might include other vari-
ables (e.g., types of teacher-education training) that may explain teachers’ in-
structional practices. How teacher educators can help preservice and in-service
Hong - Fostering Creativity.P65 2/9/2009, 5:47 PM14
Journal of Creative Behavior
teachers develop desirable teacher attributes that impact classroom instruction
is an important area for future research. In this study, teachers’ instructional prac-
tices were measured by self-report. Teachers’ actual engagements in classroom
instruction may be different from their self-reported behaviors. Measures of
students’ creativity would enrich future research investigating the relationship
between teacher characteristics and outcomes of creativity-fostering instruction.
Although a few studies suggest that self-reports can be valid indicators of educa-
tional constructs (O’Neil, Sugrue, & Baker, 1995/1996), readers are reminded to
exercise caution in interpreting the findings.
The findings of the effects of epistemological beliefs, intrinsic motivation, and
goal orientation on teachers’ perceived instructional practices examined in this
study partly replicated previous findings about the relationship between these
constructs and student learning. Elementary teachers with sophisticated beliefs
about the nature of knowledge were related to some of instructional practices
that facilitate the development of creative thinking in students. Not surprisingly,
teachers with intrinsic motivation for creative work reported practicing creativity-
fostering instruction. The most significant teacher attribute, however, was goal
orientation toward learning/mastery, which had significant impacts on all instruc-
tional practices examined in the study that foster creative thinking in students.
Teacher characteristics are one of the important factors that affect the devel-
opment of potential in all students, along with students’ own cognitive ability,
personal attributes, and other environmental factors (Hong & Milgram, 2008).
The current study indicates that teachers’ own personal beliefs and attributes do
have influences on how they structure their classroom instruction. It is imperative
that instructional approaches of classroom teachers be examined in order to
improve their instructional practices (Hong, Greene, & Higgins, 2006). However,
it is also important, if not more important, to understand teachers’ beliefs and
attributes as they have strong influences on their own instructional practices.
Examining the relationship between teachers’ instructional practices and student
creativity may not be sufficient when the influential source (teacher characteris-
tics) that shapes instructional practices is unexamined. Fundamentally, it is
what teachers bring to their instructional preparation — their beliefs and attributes
— that have a primary impact on their instructional practices (Borko & Putnam,
The good news of this research is that these teacher characteristics (teachers’
sophistication in beliefs about the nature of knowledge, intrinsic motivation re-
lated to creative work, and learning goal orientation), widely researched and con-
sidered beneficial for student learning and achievement, are also beneficial for
increasing student creativity. Preservice and in-service teachers should be pro-
vided with how-to-teachch methodology courses, but also with opportunities to
examine and challenge their beliefs and attributes as they have a major impact
on forming and implementing instructional strategies, which in turn may improve
chances for students to realize their creative potential.
Hong - Fostering Creativity.P65 2/9/2009, 5:47 PM15
Teacher Attributes and Instruction for Creativity
AMABILE, T. M. (1996). Creativity in context. Boulder, CO: Westview Press, Inc.
AMABILE, T. M., HILL, K. G., HENNESSEY, B. A., & TIGHE, E. M. (1994). The Work Preference Inventory:
Assessing intrinsic and extrinsic motivational orientations. Journal of Personality and Social
Psychology, 66, 950-967.
AMES, C., & ARCHER, J. (1988). Achievement goals in the classroom: Students’ learning strategies and
motivation process. Journal of Educational Psychology, 80, 260-267.
BAER, J., & KAUFMAN, J. C. (2005). Bridging generality and specificity: The Amusement Park Theoretical
(APT) model of creativity. Roeper Review, 27, 158-163.
BAKER, J. A., BRIDGER, R., & EVANS, K. (1998). Models of underachievement among gifted
preadolescents: The role of personal, family, and school factors. Gifted Child Quarterly, 42, 5-15.
BLAND, L. C., SOWA, C. J., & CALLAHAN, C. M. (1994). An overview of resilience in gifted children.
Roeper Review, 17, 77-80.
BORKO, H., & PUTNAM, R. T. (1996). Learning to teach. In D. C. Berliner & R. C. Calfee (Eds.), Handbook
of educational psychology (pp. 673-708). New York: Macmillan.
I., & SCHLAGBAUER, A. (2007). The relationship between creativity, teacher ratings on behavior,
age, and gender in pupils from seven to ten years. Journal of Creative Behavior, 41, 91-113.
BROPHY, J. (2005). Goal theorists should move on from performance goals. Educational Psychologist,
40, 167-276.
BROWNLEE, J., PURDIE, N., & BOULTON-LEWIS, G. (2001). Changing epistemological beliefs in pre-
serve teacher education students. Teaching in Higher Education, 6, 247-268.
CARR, M., ALEXANDER, J., SCHWANENFLUGEL, P. (1996). Where gifted children do and do not excel
on metacognitive tasks. Roeper Review, 18, 212-217.
CHEN, C., HIMSEL, A., KASOF, J., GREENBERGER, E., & DMITRIEVA, J. (2006). Boundless creativity:
Evidence for the domain generality of individual differences in creativity. Journal of Creative
Behavior, 40, 179-199.
CLASEN, D. R., & CLASEN, R. E. (1995). Underachievement of highly able students and the peer society.
Gifted and Talented International, 10, 67-76.
COHEN, J. (1992). A power primer. Psychological Bulletin, 112, 1155-1159.
COLQUITT, J. A., & SIMMERING, M. J. (1998). Conscientiousness, goal orientation, and motivation to learn
during the learning process: A longitudinal study. Journal of Applied Psychology, 83, 654-665.
CROPLEY, A. (2006). Creativity: A social approach. Roeper Review, 28, 125-130.
DAIUTE, C., & DALTON, B. (1993). Collaboration between children learning to write: Can novices be
masters? Cognition and Instruction, 10, 281-333.
DAVIS, G. A., & RIMM, S. (1994). Education of the gifted and talented (3rd ed.). Bonston: Allyn and
DE SOUZA FLEITH, D. (2000). Teacher and student perceptions of creativity in the classroom environment.
Roeper Review, 22, 148-153.
DWECK, C. S. & LEGGETT, E. L. (1988). A social-cognitive approach to motivation and personality.
Psychological Review, 95, 256-273.
ELLIOTT, E. S. & MCGREGOR, H. (2001). A 2 x 2 achievement goal framework. Journal of Personality
and Social Psychology, 80, 501-519.Feldhusen, J. F. (1995). Talent development: The new direction
in gifted education. Roeper Review, 18, 92.
FARR, J. L., SIN, H., & TESLUK, P. E. (2003). Knowledge management processes and work group
innovation. In L. V. Shavinina, L. V. (Ed.), The international handbook on innovation (pp. 574-
586). New York: Elsevier Science.
FELDHUSEN, J. F. (1995). Talent development: The new direction in gifted education. Roeper Review,
18, 92.
Hong - Fostering Creativity.P65 2/9/2009, 5:47 PM16
Journal of Creative Behavior
FERRETTI, R., & BUTTERFIELD, E. C. (1992). Intelligence-related differences in the learning, maintenance,
and transfer of problem-solving strategies. Intelligence, 16, 207-223.
GUILFORD, J. P. (1967). The nature of human intelligence. New York: McGraw-Hill.
HOANG, T. (2008). Creativity: A motivational tool for interest and conceptual understanding in science
education. International Journal of Humanities and Social Science, 1(4), 209-215.
HOFER, B. K., & PINTRICH, P. R. (1997). The development of epistemological theories: Beliefs about
knowledge and knowing their relation to learning. Review of Educational Research, 67, 88-140.
HONG, E. (2001, 2004). Self Assessment Questionnaire (SAQ): Intrinsic Motivation. Unpublished
document, College of Education, University of Nevada, Las Vegas, NV.
HONG, E., GREENE, M. T., & HIGGINS, K. (2006). Instructional practices of teacher sin general education
classrooms and gifted resource rooms: Development and validation of the instructional practice
questionnaire. Gifted Child Quarterly, 50, 91-103.
HONG, E., HARTZELL, S. A., & NADELSON, L. (2005, 2006). Instructional Practice Questionnaire I.
Unpublished document, College of Education, University of Nevada, Las Vegas, NV.
HONG, E., & MILGRAM, R. M. (2008). Preventing talent loss. New York: Taylor and Francis.
HONG, E., MILGRAM, R. M., & WHISTON, S. C. (1993). Leisure activities in adolescents as a predictor of
occupational choice in young adults. Journal of Career Development, 19, 221-229.
HONG, E., & NADELSON, L. (2005, 2006). Epistemological Beliefs in Teaching and Learning.
Unpublished document, College of Education, University of Nevada, Las Vegas, NV.
HONG, E., NADELSON, L., & HARTZELL, S. A. (2005, 2006). Instructional Practice Questionnaire II.
Unpublished document, College of Education, University of Nevada, Las Vegas, NV.
JEFFREY, B. (2006). Creative teaching and learning: Towards a common discourse and practice.
Cambridge Journal of Education, 36, 399-414.
KARDASH, C. M., & HOWELL, K. L. (2000). Effects of epistemological beliefs and topic-specific beliefs
on undergraduates’ cognitive and strategic processing of dual positioned text. Journal of Educational
Psychology, 92, 534-535.
KAUFMAN, J. C., & STERNBERG, R. J. (2007). Creativity. Change, 39(4), 55-60.
LEE-CORBIN, H, & DENICOLO, P. (1998). Portraits of the able child: Highlights of case study research.
High Abilities Studies, 9, 207-218.
LEUNG, A. K., MADDUX, W. W., GALINSKY, A. D., & CHIU, C. (2008). Multicultural experience enhances
creativity: The when and how. American Psychologist, 63, 169-181.
MA, H. (2006). A synthetic analysis of the effectiveness of single components and packages in creativity
training programs. Creativity Research Journal, 18, 435-446.
MCGREEVY, A. (1990). Tracking the creative teacher. Momentum, 21(1), 57-59.
MIDGLEY, C. & URDAN, T. (1995). Predictors of middle school students’ use of self-handicapping strategies.
Journal of Early Adolescence, 15, 389-411.
MILGRAM, R. M., & HONG, E. (1999). Creative out-of-school activities in intellectually gifted adolescents
as predictors of life accomplishment in young adults: A longitudinal study. Creativity Research
Journal, 12, 77-87.
NOLEN, S. B. (1988). Reasons for studying: Motivational orientations and study strategies. Cognition
and Instruction, 5, 269-287.
O’NEIL, H. F., JR., SUGRUE, B., & BAKER, E. L. (1995/1996). Effects of motivational interventions on
the National Assessment of Educational Progress mathematics performance. Educational
Assessment, 3, 135-157.
PARNES, S. J. (1988). Visioning. Buffalo, NY: Creative Education Foundation Press.
PATRICK, H., ANDERMAN, L. H., RYAN, A. M., EDELIN, K. C., & MIDGLEY, C. (2001). Teachers’
Communication of goal orientations in four fifth-grade classrooms. The Elementary School Journal,
102 , 35-58.
PEDHAZUR, E. J. (1997). Multiple regression in behavioral research: Explanation and prediction
(3rd ed.). New York: Harcourt.
Hong - Fostering Creativity.P65 2/9/2009, 5:47 PM17
Teacher Attributes and Instruction for Creativity
POSNER, G., STRIKE, K., HEWSON, P., & GERZOG, W. (1982). Accommodation of a scientific conception:
Towards a theory of conceptual change. Science Education, 66, 211-227.
QIAN, G., & ALVERMANN, D. (1995). Role of epistemological beliefs and learned helplessness in secondary
school students’ learning science concepts from text. Journal of Educational Psychology 87,
REJSKIND, G. (2000). TAG teachers: Only the creative need apply. Roeper Review, 22(3), 153-157.
RENZULLI, J. S. (2002). Emerging conceptions of giftedness: Building a bridge to the new century.
Exceptionality, 10, 67-75.
(2002). Scales for Rating the Behavioral Characteristics of Superior Students — Revised edition.
Mansfield Center, CT: Creative Learning Press.
RUNCO, M. A. (2003). Education for creative potential. Scandinavian Journal of Educational Research,
47, 317-324.
SCHACTER, J., THUM, Y. M., & ZIFKIN, D. (2006). How much does creative teaching enhance elementary
school students’ achievement? Journal of Creative Behavior, 40, 47-72.
SCHOMMER, M. (1990). Effects of beliefs about the nature of knowledge on comprehension. Journal of
Educational Psychology, 82, 498-504.
SCHOMMER, M. (1994). An emerging conceptualization of epistemological beliefs about their role in
learning. In R. Garner & P. A. Alexander (Eds.), Beliefs about text and instruction with text
(pp. 25-40). Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.
SCHOMMER, M., CALVERT, C., GARIGLIETTI, G., & BAJAJ, A. (1997). The development of
epistemological beliefs among secondary students: A longitudinal study. Journal of Educational
Psychology, 89, 37-40.
SCHOMMER, M., & WALKER, K. (1995). Are epistemological beliefs similar across domains? Journal of
Educational Psychology, 87, 424-432.
SCOTT, C. L. (1999). Teachers’ biases toward creative children. Creativity Research Journal, 12,
SIEGLER, R. S., & KOTOVSKY, K. (1986). Two levels of giftedness: Shall ever the twain meet? In R. J.
Sternberg & J. E. Davidson (Eds.), Conceptions of giftedness (pp.417-435). New York: Cambridge
University Press.
STEIN, G., & POOLE, P. (1997). Meeting the interests and needs of gifted children: A strategy for teaching
and learning. Early Child Development and Care, 130, 13-19.
STERNBERG, R. J. (1987). A unified theory of intellectual exceptionality. In J. D. Day & J. G. Borkowski
(Eds.), Intelligence and exceptionality: New directions for theory, assessment, and instructional
practices (pp. 135-172). Norwood, NJ: Ablex.
TREFFINGER D. J., ISAKSEN, S. G., & DORVAL, B. (2003). Creative problem solving (CPS version
6.1TM): A contemporary framework for managing change. Sarasota, FL: Center for Creative
Learning, Inc. and Creative Problem Solving Groups, Inc.
VANDEWALLE, D., & CUMMINGS, L. L. (1997). A test of the influence of goal orientation on the feedback-
seeking process. Journal of Applied Psychology, 82, 390-400.
extrinsic goal framing enhance extrinsic goal-oriented individuals’ learning and performance? An
experimental test of the match perspective versus self-determination theory. Journal of Educational
Psychology, 100, 387-397.
WEBB, N. M., & PALINCSAR, A. S. (1996). Group processes in the classroom. In D. Berliner and R.
Calfee (Eds.), Handbook of Educational Psychology, (pp. 841-876). MacMillan, New York.
WHITLOCK, M. S., & DUCETTE, J. P. (1989). Outstanding and average teachers of the gifted: A comparative
study. Gifted Child Quarterly, 33, 15-21.
WIGFIELD, A., & GUTHRIE, J. T. (1997). Relations of children’s motivation for reading to the amount and
breadth of their reading. Journal of Educational Psychology, 89, 420–432.
Hong - Fostering Creativity.P65 2/9/2009, 5:47 PM18
Journal of Creative Behavior
WINNER, E. (1996). The rage to master: The decisive role of talent in the visual ar ts. In K. A. Ericsson
(Ed.), The road to excellence: The acquisition of expert performance in the arts, science, sports,
and games (pp. 271-302). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.
WOOD, P., & KARDASH, C. (2002). Critical elements in the design and analysis of studies of epistemology.
In B. K. Hofer & P. R. Pintrich (Eds.), Personal epistemology: The psychology of beliefs about
knowledge and knowing (pp. 231-260). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.
YIP, W., CHOW, C., CHENG, K., CHEUK, C., & MCBRIDE-CHANG, C. (2007). Individual contribution in
brainstorming: Does group composition make a difference? Korean Journal of Thinking & Problem
Solving, 17(2), 77-84.
Eunsook Hong, Stephanie A. Hartzell, and Mary T. Greene, University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Address correspondence concerning this paper to: Eunsook Hong, Department of Educational Psychology,
University of Nevada, Box 453003, Las Vegas, NV 89154-3003,
We would like to acknowledge the cooperation of the Clark County School District; without its assistance
this research could not have been conducted.
Hong - Fostering Creativity.P65 2/9/2009, 5:47 PM19
... According to Hartzell and Greene (2017), in the creativity-fostering classroom, teachers generate and maintain the climate in which students are respected. They are asked to tolerate and accept a new ideas. ...
... The researchers found that the teachers are very supportive of students' creativity in various ways, for example by giving prompt questions, building a classroom atmosphere through games, and also asking for ideas when giving a variety of topics. However, this is contrary to Hartzell and Greene's (2017) opinion which underlines that elementary school teachers do not implement strategies that foster creativity in students. On the contrary, in this study, the researcher verified that the teachers can help students by providing various ways to improve their creativity skills. ...
... The researcher points out some statements from the teachers as follows (1) using student-centered approach, (2) developing a good approach to students such as creating stories in English, games, and also singing together especially for classes 2 and 3, (3) giving prompt questions for students to express their opinions, and (4) giving compliments and encouragement to students if they can express their opinions and answering questions. Hartzell and Greene (2017) point out that the motivation given by the teachers can be applied in various situations. With the flexible strategies, students can transfer their learning to different situations and this is very useful for them in real life. ...
Full-text available
Creativity plays an important role in education for both students and teachers. In this study, the researchers aim to investigate how teachers generate elementary students’ creativity in the classroom. The study involved ten elementary school English teachers from ten schools in Sintang, West Kalimantan, Indonesia. This descriptive qualitative study employed snowball sampling by which the researchers invited one teacher to participate in this study and later the teacher suggested other potential participants that could be considered as the research samples. In gathering the data, the researchers identified teachers’ perspectives in generating creativity using questionnaires and interviews. The questionnaires results were in the form of a Likert Scale and a diagram was employed to display the overall tendency. Further, interviews were descriptively analysed to support the results of the questionnaires. The results of this study demonstrated that in generating creativity in the classroom, the following criteria should be fulfilled: (1) students’ mistakes should be welcomed and accepted as important part of learning; (2) students are expected to perform not only by constructing novel ideas, but also creating a product (outcome) that facilitates their creativity in the classroom. Other results close to the previous two main points are related to open-ended and real-life (authentic) tasks, resources availability, the atmosphere of care, and the teachers as a guide. In this study, the researchers provide data about how elementary school teachers generate creativity for elementary school students. It is suggested that further research should nurture and provide an atmosphere of care and physical environment to generate creativity.
... All these studies reported that teachers hold misconceptions about creativity which extended to their teaching practices and their views of students' creativity in their classrooms. Hong, Hartzell, and Greene (2009) also explained that those teachers who mentioned using creativity-supportive practices have high-quality learning enjoyed creative work. The teachers' answers revealed that although Iranian EFL teachers selected the strategies to foster creativity practices in their class, students' answers indicated that these strategies are used infrequently, irregularly, and sporadically. ...
... Although a few Iranian EFL teachers prefer group work regarding some particular tasks, for example, reading tasks, most of them manage the activities in pairs. Encouraging students to participate in activities inside and outside the school in an area of their interest expands opportunities for them to make use of creative thinking and skills (Hong, Hartzell & Greene, 2009). It seems that Iranian EFL teachers have inclined to teacher-centered classes. ...
Full-text available
This study investigated the creativity-supportive behaviors of Iranian EFL teachers. A mixed-methods data collection approach was adopted: quantitative data were obtained from randomly selected 94 teachers and 216 students through the Persian version of the Creativity Fostering Teaching (CFT) index (Soh, 2000), and qualitative data were collected via students' reports on twelve classroom aspects. To analyze the quantitative data, an independent samples t-test and for the qualitative data, thematic analysis coding were used. There was a significant difference between the teachers' and the students' views on creativity-supportive behaviors of Iranian EFL teachers. Additionally, environment and interaction were extracted as two main themes from the analysis of the qualitative data. These two themes were discussed as the central factors influencing the creativity-supportive behaviors of the teachers. Although most Iranian EFL teachers want and try to adopt strategies and activities to develop or support creativity in their classrooms, the results showed that Iranian EFL students do not experience the classrooms as a locus of supporting creativity. Generally, creativity is not implemented and supported in Iranian EFL classrooms. The findings illustrate that teacher-training programs should equip Iranian EFL teachers with the knowledge and strategies of creativity-fostering instruction.
... The development of new methodologies such as those proposed in this study are necessary to foster creativity in the classroom and beyond, offering new perspectives for exploration and observation as a driver of innovation and progress (Parras-Burgos et al., 2020;Parras-Burgos, Fernández-Pacheco, Cavas-Martínez, Nieto Martinez & Cañavate, 2018). In this sense, the most important recommendations of some experts and researchers to foster creativity and learning in the classroom (Beghetto, 2013;Cropley, 2001;Davies et al., 2013;Hong, Hartzell & Greene, 2009;Schacter, Thum & Zifkin, 2006;Torrance, 1962) can be summarised as follows: providing opportunities for students to use their imagination while learning, teaching with a more Fig. 6. Images of how the example group executes their idea through handcrafted generation. ...
Full-text available
The generation of original and innovative ideas is a challenge for any professional. There are several studies that demonstrate how the capacity to explore creativity is reduced until reaching educational levels where it is hardly experienced, and for this reason it is necessary to introduce it in the classroom to complement their academic training before their incorporation into the labour market. The use of new technologies implies in turn an abandonment of manual or craft skills, losing in this area a very relevant possibility of creative development. Most of the methods that are usually used to generate ideas are related to oral and written conceptualization, but manual ideation is practically not contemplated. This study proposes a methodology for generating ideas based on traditional ideation from the physical creation of models as part of the creative process. This methodology has been used with satisfactory results in 38 courses at the Industrial Organisation School (Spain), with 382 people between 18 and 30 years of age participating in the study, demonstrating that the development of creative skills obtained through this new approach can have a very significant impact on students' later career development.
... According to Chan and Yuen (2015), the concepts of creativity differ and vary between subcultures. To Hong et al. (2009), a study among Korean teachers revealed that they encouraged their students to be creative, as such students frequently had a high inherent wish for creative activity, and hold sophisticated attitudes about knowledge attainment. Teachers who held erroneous ideas about creativity experienced difficulties with creative learners (Aljughaiman & Mowrer-Reynolds, 2005). ...
Full-text available
The study was about the creative nurturing behaviors of in-service teachers in Ghana. Using the descriptive cross-sectional survey design, a sample of 768 (out of 1,321) in-service teachers were surveyed using online Google forms. The data for the study were collected with an adapted version of the Sharma and Sharma (2018) creativity nurturing behavior scale (15-items; α=.79). The data were descriptively and inferentially analyzed. Overall, the study found that majority of respondents exhibited low levels of creativity nurturing behaviors. Specifically, most of the respondents had moderate levels of creative curiosity and creative motivation, but some respondents had low levels of creative abstractions and critical thinking. Again, the study revealed that male and female respondents did not differ in their creative nurturing behaviors. Finally, differences were not established in creativity nurturing behaviors of in-service teachers based on the experience. In-service teachers were found to have insufficient knowledge on creative teaching. Therefore, it was recommended that in-service teachers need to be retrained in the core competent areas of the new standard-based curriculum.
... Etkili eğitim ve öğretimin sağlanması için, diğer bir dizi yeterlilikte olduğu gibi; yaratıcılık ve tasarım açısından da yüksek yeterliliğe sahip öğretmenlere ihtiyaç bulunmaktadır (Atabek, 2020a(Atabek, , 2020b. Öğretmenlerin yaratıcılıkla ilgili inançlarının onların öğretim uygulamaları ile doğrudan ilişkileri olduğu göz önüne alındığında (Hong, Hartzell ve Greene, 2009) öğretmenlerin ve öğretmen adaylarının yaratıcılık ve tasarıma yönelik özyeterlilik inançları da etkili öğretmenlik açısından önemlidir. Dolayısıyla müzik eğitiminde gerçekleştirilen hangi davranışların yaratıcılık ve tasarım özyeterlilikleri ile ilişkili olduğunun ortaya çıkarılması; yaratıcılık ve tasarım açısından yüksek yeterliliğe sahip öğretmenlerin yetiştirilmesi için içgörü kazanılmasına katkı sağlayacaktır. ...
Full-text available
Bu araştırmada, okul öncesi ve sınıf öğretmeni adaylarının yaratıcılık özyeterliliği ve tasarım özyeterliliği düzeylerinin, onların müziksel davranışları ya da kişisel değişkenlerine göre anlamlı farklılıklar gösterip göstermediğinin ortaya çıkarılması amaçlanmıştır. Araştırmaya okul öncesi ve sınıf öğretmenliği programlarının üçüncü ve dördüncü sınıflarında okuyan 273 öğretmen adayı katılmıştır (n=273). Veriler kişisel bilgi formu, müziksel davranış anketi, Yaratıcılık Özyeterliliği Ölçeği ve Tasarım Özyeterliliği Ölçeği aracılığı ile toplanmıştır. Yapılan çözümlemeler sonucunda, erkek öğretmen adaylarının yaratıcılık özyeterliliği düzeylerinin kadın öğretmen adaylarına göre anlamlı düzeyde daha yüksek olduğu ortaya çıkmıştır. Yaratıcılık özyeterliliği düzeylerinin diğer kişisel değişkenlere ya da müziksel davranışlara göre anlamlı farklılık göstermediği saptanmıştır. Erkek öğretmen adaylarının tasarım özyeterliliği düzeylerinin de kadın öğretmen adaylarına göre anlamlı düzeyde daha yüksek olduğu gözlemlenmiştir. Tasarım özyeterliliği düzeylerinin ayrıca adayların sınıflarına ve yaşlarına göre de anlamlı düzeyde farklılık göstermektedir. Ek olarak, öğretmen adaylarının tasarım özyeterliliği düzeylerinin kendi sesini eğitimde etkili bir biçimde kullanabilme inancına göre de anlamlı düzeyde farklılık gösterdiği ortaya çıkmıştır. Tasarım özyeterliliği düzeylerinin diğer kişisel değişkenlere ya da müziksel davranışlara göre anlamlı farklılıklar göstermediği belirlenmiştir.
Full-text available
Work in Hungary took place during the entire duration of the development project. Pedagogical work was conducted over two school years between February 2016 and June 2017. The team undertook two rounds of data collection. Apart from three private schools, schools involved in the project were public. In Hungary, the local co-ordinators focused on a school population of disadvantaged students, many of them young Romani. The team already carried out work with a network of schools and teachers and added the project materials and ideas to its previous practice. It worked in both primary and secondary education and focused on mathematics and science education. In this study, Hungary reported one of the lowest shares of students with an immigrant background (2%), and a high proportion of classes with a positive class climate (60%). The time span between pre- and post-measurements in Hungary was relatively short (17 weeks), and relatively light for students (8 hours of intervention in class), although they continued working with the new pedagogical activities during the whole school year, 90 minutes a week. The difference between rounds was remarkable: the second year of the project, the intervention with students lasted considerably longer (51 hours of intervention in class), and 34 weeks passed between pre- and post-measurements. Teacher professional development in the Hungarian Team comprised one intensive induction training followed up by regular meeting sessions throughout the intervention. Professional development workshops, monitoring sessions and continuous mentoring was provided. During the first round, the team used the Creative Partnerships method (see Chapter 3 for more information on the signature pedagogies). During the second round, two kinds of pedagogies were used in the “intervention” schools: Creative Partnerships and the Step by Step approach. The Creative Partnerships approach involves continuous teacher professional development based on collaboration with an artist or a creative professional with the class teacher. The artist helps the teachers change their teaching in different subjects to make it more creative and engaging for students. The Step by Step approach focuses on structured co operation and teamwork. All intervention teachers had sessions about the OECD rubrics and the Hungarian project team closely supported teachers participating in the Creative Partnerships programme. Chapter 3. Eleven signature pedagogies related to the fostering of creativity and critical thinking - Creative Partnerships (all subjects) page 77- 79 Chapter 8 - Hungarian Team page 217- 221 At T-Tudok Centre for Knowledge Management and Educational Research and Education Authority, Budapest: Szilvia Németh (project coordinator) and Anita Kaderják; At T-Tudok Centre for Knowledge Management and Educational Research:, Judit Kádár Fülöp, Judit Lannert, Daniel Vince, Dezső Máté; At the University of Pécs: Attila Lengvárszky, Péter Lengyel, and Endre Raffay; at the Step by Step Programme Hungary, Bertalanné Zágon and Éva Deák; At the Educational Authority, Budapest: Sándor Brassói, László Ostorics and László Pongrácz
This study aimed to investigate the effects of learning environment (traditional and non-traditional classroom seating) and course experience on the learning effectiveness of undergraduates. This study also examined the effects of both variables on adaptability, creativity, and motivation; consequently, contribute to learning effectiveness. Overall, 483 undergraduates from a university in Taiwan participated in the survey. Findings evinced that the learning environment and course experience had significant positive influences on learning effectiveness. The relationship between the learning environment and learning effectiveness was partially mediated by adaptability; while creativity partially mediated the adaptability and learning effectiveness relationship. Furthermore, motivation was found to be partially mediated the course experience and learning effectiveness relationship; while, creativity partially mediated the motivation and learning effectiveness relationship. Results suggested that non-traditional classroom seating was promoting adaptability, creativity, and learning effectiveness of students. A good course experience can motivate students, promote creativity, and learning effectiveness.
In this article we reviewed literature related to creative self-efficacy in the field of education. We narrowed down the review to eighty-eight articles. We formed categories according to (1) publication year, (2) country of study, (3) sample/study group, (4) method used, and (5) subject matter addressed. The first study was published in 2004. The frequency of publications increased in the last three years. USA, China, and Taiwan are the leading countries in terms of origin of published articles. Except four inter-cultural studies, all others were conducted in a single country. About half of the studies were conducted with K-12 students and teachers, and the remaining focused on higher education students and instructors. Mostly quantitative methods have been utilized. Lastly, we categorized the issues tackled into nine themes. Researchers gave a heavy emphasis on investigating creativity/creativity indicators, individual/environmental factors and less emphasis on academic performance in relation to creative self-efficacy. © 2021. by the authors; licensee Modestum. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution License (
Over the past decade, Aotearoa New Zealand’s government has mandated that all new school buildings be designed according to an ILE approach to support student-centred teaching and encourage creativity and collaboration. For experienced drama facilitators who rely upon an environment that encourages collaboration, dialogue and flexibility this is familiar territory (Nicholls & Philip, 2012) (Nicholls and Philip, J Appl Theatre Perform 17:583–602, 2012). Often teaching in repurposed spaces, drama teachers resourcefully adapt halls, prefabs, libraries, sports fields, or empty classrooms for rehearsal, teaching, devising and performance. Drama facilitators and students have long been innovating spaces; not necessarily out of pedagogical intention, but practical necessity. This chapter discusses the reflections of an experienced drama educator who recently transitioned from the drama space she ‘made do with’, into a purpose-built ILE school. The ILE has presented new challenges to both her pedagogy and commitment to exploratory, collaborative and creative approaches. We examine how this purpose-built ILE facility affected her drama pedagogy, and the extent to which pedagogical innovation applies in this context. As a reflective practitioner inquiry, this case study generated data through embodied reflection (Luton, 2016) (Luton,.New Zealand J Res Perform Arts Educ 6:27–37, 2016) and journal entries. The inquiry explores the relationship between a drama teacher, her pedagogy and her teaching space. We conclude by reflecting upon the significance of the space to the teacher, its connection to pedagogy and opportunities and limitations for future praxis. We advocate for a considered review of the specific needs of Drama within future spaces to ensure practitioners are not simply making do, once more.
Full-text available
This study examined the relationship between creative teaching and elementary students' achievement gains. Forty-eight upper elementary school teachers' classroom instruction was observed and evaluated over the course of 8 different lessons throughout the year. For each teacher, during each lesson, both a creative teaching frequency score and a quality score were derived. These scores were then used as predictor variables in a structural equation model to determine the magnitude of the relationship between creative teaching and classroom achievement gains in reading, language, and mathematics. Our results demonstrated that (a) the majority of teachers do not implement any teaching strategies that foster student creativity; (b) teachers who elicit student creativity turn out students that make substantial achievement gains; and (c) classrooms with high proportions of minority and low-performing students receive significantly less creative teaching.
Full-text available
The aim of this study was to examine the relationship between the performance on a test for the assessment of creative behavior and teacher ratings on scales for the assessment of behavior commonly seen as negative. The sample consisted of 71 Austrian elementary school students (33 boys and 38 girls), from seven to ten years of age. The children were tested with the German “Creativity Test for Preschoolers and Pupils” by Krampen. This test is based on Guilford's model of the structure of the intellect and it assesses divergent thinking with respect to behavioral, figural, and semantic tasks. The teachers completed the “Conners Abbreviated Teacher Rating Scale,” a teacher rating questionnaire based on the DSM-IV criteria to assess inattentive and impulsive/hyperactive behavior, and a researcher self-constructed teacher rating questionnaire, containing the scales “dissocial behavior”, “introverted behavior”, and “creative behavior”. It was found that more impulsive/hyperactive and disruptive behavior was related to a better performance on fluency and more attentive and less introverted behavior were related to a better performance on flexibility. Additionally, it was found that boys present more alternatives in active behavior than girls. The results lead to the conclusion that more lively behavior of pupils should not be seen negatively, as such behavior seems to be a predictor of creative thinking.
Preventing talent loss provides a comprehensive model of giftedness and talent for all educators including teachers, counselors, and administrators. By presenting a summary of theory-driven, evidence-based knowledge, Hong and Milgram offer innovative and practical solutions for meeting the challenge of coping with talent loss. This monumental book distinguishes the important difference between expert talent and creative talent. While other books focus on how to improve the process of identifying the gifted and talented,Preventing Talent Loss provides educators with the means to individualize their curriculum and instruction in regular classrooms.
The effects of epistemological beliefs and topic-specific beliefs on undergraduates' cognitive and strategic processing of a dual-positional text were investigated. Forty undergraduates thought aloud while reading a text that presented information both consistent and inconsistent with their prior beliefs about the HTV-AIDS relationship. Epistemological beliefs about the speed of learning affected the overall number of cognitive processes exhibited, whereas topic-specific beliefs interacted with the nature of the information read to influence the specific type of cognitive processing used. Strategies for accepting or resolving apparent ambiguities in text were related positively to delayed recall; cognitive processes for developing awareness were related negatively to the number of distortions produced.
One trend in the creativity literature is towards unambiguous expressions of talent. This trend follows from an interest in scientific rigour, but if we are interested in children, it is creative potential that is the primary concern, rather than unambiguous creative performance. Educators and others working with children should define creativity in very literal terms, as thinking or problem solving that involves the construction of new meaning. This in turn relies on personal interpretations, and these are personal and new for the individual, not on any larger scale. This approach is consistent with the educational premise 'to understand is to invent', and it allows educators to target self-expression. The emphasis is thus on the individual, the self. Equally significant for educators is that this view of creativity posits that creativity is widely distributed. A wide distribution is implied because virtually every individual has the mental capacity to construct the personal interpretations that are involved. Creativity is, then, something we can find in every child, not just the gifted or highly intelligent.