Portland State University. Department of Educational Leadership and Policy
Term of Graduation
Date of Publication
Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) in Educational Leadership: Postsecondary Education
Educational Leadership and Policy
1 online resource (viii, 117 pages)
Creativity is widely recognized as being invaluable for human development and a crucial 21st century talent. Preparing students for an uncertain and complex world requires that higher education promote students' imagination, originality, curiosity, and flexibility and build their capacity to take risks to try new approaches to problem-posing and problem-solving. However, little is known about how undergraduates enrolled in different disciplines view creativity. This quantitative study at a university in the northwestern United States assessed how undergraduate students in different academic disciplines responded to an instrument on creativity measurement developed by Dlouhy (2012). The study asked: How do undergraduates in science, engineering, and the arts compare in their perceptions of creativity, their creativity self-perception, and their views about the role of creativity in education? Through principal component analysis, I found that the three perceptual components of creativity were highly correlated; therefore, I conducted my analysis with a single response variable of overall creativity, representing summed perception across the three components. Through multiple linear regression, I found that academic discipline was a significant predictor of perceptions of creativity, with students in the arts scoring 6.6% higher than students in engineering and 6.4% higher than those in science-related programs. Science and engineering students scored nearly equally in their perceptions of creativity, with science students scoring only 0.2% higher than engineering students. Given the importance of creativity in all fields, I recommend that future researchers explore the potential for interventions in post-secondary science and engineering courses to increase students' perceptions of creativity.
© 2021 Dildora F. Beaulieu
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Beaulieu, Dildora F., "Creativity in Science, Engineering, and the Arts: A Study of Undergraduate Students' Perceptions" (2021). Dissertations and Theses. Paper 5852.