INFLUENCE OF PROBLEM SOLVING AND CREATIVE THINKING ABILITY ON PRODUCTION AND APPRECIATION OF HUMOR

ALAN MARVIN PERRY, Fordham University

Abstract

Purpose. This study examined the influence of problem solving ability and creativity on humor appreciation and production. It was predicted that problem solving ability would be a leading predictor of humor appreciation while creativity would be a leading predictor of humor production. The variable, tolerance for ambiguity, was also included in the prediction equation.^ Method. The sample studied consisted of 233 adolescents in the Metropolitan area. Their mean age was 17.2.^ Problem solving ability was measured for four verbal maze problems; creativity by the fluency scores on the Verbal Form A of the Torrance Tests of Creative Thinking; tolerance for ambiguity by MacDonald's AT-20 Scale. Humor appreciation and humor production tests were devised to measure these abilities.^ Multiple regression analyses were used to test the hypotheses for the overall sample and for the male and female subsamples. Humor appreciation was separated into appreciation of incongruity resolution humor and appreciation of pure incongruity humor. Additional information was obtained through the use of correlational analysis.^ Results. Problem solving ability proved to be a statistically significant predictor of appreciation of incongruity resolution humor. Problem solving ability and creativity were statistically significant predictors of appreciation of pure incongruity humor. Tolerance for ambiguity was not a statistically significant contributor to the prediction of either criterion.^ Problem solving ability and creativity proved to be statistically significant contributors to the prediction of humor production. Tolerance for ambiguity was not a significant contributor to the prediction of humor production.^ The regression analyses for each sex were found to be similar to those obtained for the overall sample.^ Conclusions. It was concluded that while problem solving ability is a necessary condition in the prediction of appreciation of incongruity resolution humor, it may not be a sufficient condition.^ The finding that creativity and problem solving ability are significant predictors of humor production points to the conclusion that humor production may be viewed as a two stage, creative problem solving process.^ The use of humor in enhancing creative and problem solving abilities was included among the suggestions for future research. ^

Subject Area

Psychology

Recommended Citation

PERRY, ALAN MARVIN, "INFLUENCE OF PROBLEM SOLVING AND CREATIVE THINKING ABILITY ON PRODUCTION AND APPRECIATION OF HUMOR" (1982). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI8213615.
https://fordham.bepress.com/dissertations/AAI8213615

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