Creativity and Intelligence – Explorations with Gifted Students (1962)
Title: “Creativity and Intelligence – Explorations with Gifted Students”
Author: Jacob W. Getzels and Philip W. Jackson
Publisher: JOHN WILEY & SONS, INC., London and New York
Year of Publication: 1962
LOC Catalog Entry: http://lccn.loc.gov/62010828
Copyright Status: Public Domain in the United States and countries following the rule of the shorter term
“Creativity is one of the most highly valued of human qualities. It is also one of the most elusive to systematic inquiry. Questions without end have been asked and re-asked. What is the nature of the creative process? Can creative potential be identified before creative achievement? What is the effect of family environment on creative development? What is the relationship between creativity and personality? Between creativity and intelligence? We ourselves begin with the last question, hoping that in the course of seeking an answer we shall throw light on the other issues.
The concept of intelligence and the consequent intelligence measure have been used to define individual differences in cognition as if the concept and the measure encompassed the totality of the human mind and imagination. In school—and more recently in other areas requiring intellectual accomplishment—the IQ (or some cognate of it) has become the critical metric on which individuals are evaluated and sorted, given preferment or denied it. Individual differences in potential for productive thinking have been made synonymous with individual differences in perform¬ance on one or another of the numerous intelligence tests.
We do not intend to derogate the substantial contribution of the concept of intelligence and intelligence measures to our un¬derstanding of mental functioning. Yet from the very beginning it has been apparent that many significant intellectual processes were inadequately sampled by these tests. Indeed, a number of the early test makers themselves argued that certain types of cognition —notably creativity—might be independent of, or at least only moderately related to, the measures of intelligence they were constructing. And whereas common observation insists on distinguishing between knowing and discovering, between the ability to remember and the ability to invent, between being “intelligent” and being “creative,” it is this distinction that seems largely to have been lost sight of in the rush to apply the intelligence test or some derivative of it to everything from grouping children in the kindergarten to selecting students for graduate work, from choosing executives in business to assigning scientists to research positions.
Once we accept the notion, however provisionally, that creativity and intelligence as measured by the IQ are not necessarily synonymous—that the number of words an individual can define or his ability to memorize digits backwards may tell us very little about his ability to produce new forms and to restructure stereotyped situations—an almost limitless number of exciting problems present themselves for systematic study. We may, for example, ask what might otherwise seem an egregious question: can we identify individuals who are outstanding in one of these functions but not in the other? Specifically, can we identify children who are very high in intelligence but not concomitantly high in creativity, and children who are very high in creativity but not concomitantly high in intelligence? If this can be done, we may raise all manner of relevant issues regarding the behavior of these children—the answers to which may yield significant insights not only into the children themselves but into the character of specific cognitive processes. Such issues would include: What is the relative performance of these children in school? What is the nature of their fantasies and imaginative productions? Their family back¬ground? Their values and aspirations? The reactions of others to them?
Having undertaken to differentiate intellectual giftedness, we were intrigued by the possibility of differentiating other types of giftedness. We wondered whether it would be possible to distinguish between students outstanding in social adjustment and students outstanding in moral commitment. And if this were possible, what would be the concomitants of such a distinction in other aspects of the children’s behavior, say their achievement in school or their family relations? It seemed to us worthwhile to attempt a brief empirical excursion in this area.
We began our studies with few preconceptions and few presuppositions. We did not begin (as is our more usual preference) with an explicitly stated theoretical framework and a set of formal hypotheses. Instead, we permitted the behavior of the children and our own interests, whatever their conceptual foundation, to lead us from problem to problem and from question to question. That this procedure enabled us sometimes to come upon fascinating new vistas in the behavior of children seemed worth the cost of being often lost in phenomena without relevant explicit concepts to guide our observations.
We were faced from the start with a number of methodological alternatives. We could obtain a random sample of subjects from a random sample of schools. This would permit immediate inference to the general population. It would, however, limit the depth and intensity of knowledge about any particular subject. Or, we could study a more limited and necessarily atypical sample, which would not permit immediate inferential generalization but would make possible greater depth and intensity of knowledge of individual subjects. Similarly, we could use already available general instruments, hoping they would provide data that might be useful. Or, we could construct specific experimental instruments to provide the relevant data. We chose to work with intensive rather than extensive observations, using specific rather than general instruments.
These choices carry with them certain obvious consequences. First is the question of the representativeness of our sample. Those interested in the distribution of giftedness among American adolescents will not find it in this study. Second is the question of the technical refinement of the instruments. Those searching for standardized tests for immediate use will not find them. The primary purpose of the study was to explore certain neglected issues regarding gifted cognitive and psychosocial functioning. The criterion at each point in our exploration was not whether this step would provide an unalterable datum but if it would lead to an observation that is heuristic.
To define our study in this way is not to deny the relevance of asking about the representativeness and repeatability of our findings. The atypical nature of our sample and the experimental status of our instruments posed the question of replicability from the very first. All we can say is that a number of the essential findings are being confirmed in subsequent studies. Other investigators with wider ranges of schools and subjects have successfully replicated several aspects of our results. We shall have occasion to refer to these replications in the proper context. And, of course, our work with children is itself an extension and partial replication of work with adults done by Frank Barron, J. P. Guilford, Donald W. MacKinnon, Morris I. Stein, and others.
Two final comments. First, in describing the several groups of children, we do not intend to give the impression that some are “better” than others in some absolute sense. The distinctions we make are analytic not evaluative. And second, we would like to express our delight with our children. We hope that their charm and attractiveness will at least occasionally be evident in this monograph.”
JACOB W. GETZELS
PHILIP W. JACKSON
TABLE OF CONTENTS:
1 The Problem: Varieties of Giftedness in Children 1
2 The Highly Intelligent and the Highly Creative Adolescent: Explorations in Cognitive Giftedness 13
The Highly Intelligent and the Highly Creative Adolescent: An Attempt at Differentiation, 15
The Highly Intelligent and the Highly Creative Adolescents as Students: School Performance, Need : Achievement, and Perception by Teach-ers, 22
The Highly Intelligent and the Highly Creative Adolescents as Individuals: Values, Fantasies, and Aspirations, 33
The Highly Intelligent and the Highly Creative Adolescents as Members of the Family Group: Selected Parental Variables, 61
3 On Creative Thinking: The Findings in Theoretical and Educational Context 77
Logical, Associationist, and Gestalt Concep¬tions, 77
Psychoanalytic and Neo-psychoanalytic Concep¬tions, 88
Perceptual and Social Conceptions, 111 Creativity and the Student, 123
4 The Highly Moral and the Highly Adjusted Adolescent: Explorations in Psychosocial Excellence 133
Subjects, Instruments, Procedures, 134 Findings, 141 Discussion, 157
5 Clinical Studies 160
Mary, Jane, and Betty: All the Same and All Different, 160
Two Families, 176
The Scotts and High Intelligence, 176 The Blacks and High Creativity, 183
Appendix: Instruments and Procedures 195
Description of the Instruments and Procedures Used in the Study, 197
Independent Variables: Instruments Used to Select the Experimental Groups, 198
Dependent Variables: Instruments Used to Answer the Experimental Questions, 217
Reproduction of the Instruments Constructed or Adapted Especially for the Study, 223
Notes and References 278
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