Postformal thinking and creativity among late adolescents: a post-Piagetian approach.Adolescence 2008; 43(170):237-51A
This study investigated the relationship between cognitive development levels and creative performance among late adolescents from a post-Piagetian perspective. Participants were 386 college students, ranging in age from 19 to 26 years. The Social Paradigm Belief Scale was employed to measure the three cognitive styles of late adolescence: formal, relativistic, and dialectical thinking. The Divergent Thinking Test (DTT) was used to measure creative performance. Dialectical and relativistic thinking were positively correlated with creative performance, whereas formal thinking was negatively correlated. Planned contrasts revealed that postformal thinkers scored higher than formal thinkers in all dimensions of creativity, and additional MANOVA analysis exhibited a similar pattern. Multiple discriminant analysis showed that the linear combination of the six dimensions of creativity recognized in the DTT discriminated between formal and postformal thinkers, which supported our findings about the relationship between postformal thinking and creativity. Future research directions and implications for creativity pedagogy are discussed.