Traits and Abilities of Creative Thinkers

Critical Thinking Skills

(Photo credit: Enokson)

More quotes/notes from Creativity is Forever:

Cognitive abilities of creative thinkers, listed by creativity Frank Barron in 1988:

1. Recognizing patterns

2. Making connections

3. Taking risks

4. Challenging assumptions

5. Taking advantage of chance

6. Seeing in new ways.

Author Davis adds:

Fluency – ability to produce many ideas for an open-ended question

Flexibility – ability to take different approaches to a problem

Originality – uniqueness, nonconformity in thought and action

Elaboration – ability to add details to an idea, developing, embellishing, improving, implementing the idea

Transformation – changing one idea into another by modifying, combining, or substituting

Sensitivity to problems – ability to find problems, detect difficulties, detect missing information, ask good questions

Able to define problems – abilities to 1) identify the “real” problem, 2) isolate important aspects of a problem 3) clarify and simplify a problem, 4) identify subproblems 5) propose alternative problem definitions 6) define a problem more broadly

Visualization, imagination – ability to see things in the “mind’s eye,” to mentally manipulate images and ideas.

Analogical/Metaphorical thinking – ability to borrow ideas from one context and use them in another, see connections between situations

Able to predict outcomes, consequences – ability to foresee the results of different solution alternatives

Analysis – ability to separate details, break down a whole into its parts

Synthesis – ability to see relationships, combine parts into a workable whole

Evaluation – ability to separate the relevant from the irrelevant, to think critically

Logical thinking – ability to make reasonable decisions and deduce reasonable conclusions

Able to regress – ability to think like a child – uncluttered by habits, traditions, rules, conformity, pressures; related to playfulness and humor

Intuition – ability to see relationships based on insufficient information: mental leaps

Concentration – ability to focus attention