RELATIONSHIP OF CHILDREN'S CONCEPTUAL TEMPO TO IDEA PRODUCTION AND EVALUATION

LYNN CURCURO TENENBAUM, Fordham University

Abstract

The present study investigated the relationship between conceptual tempo and aspects of creativity and problem solving. The literature is replete with findings regarding the academic superiority of reflective versus impulsive youngsters. Thus, reflective children were hypothesized to be better problem solvers than their impulsive counterparts. In contrast, the premature use of evaluation has been found to detrimentally affect a key component of creativity which is ideational fluency. Fluency is facilitated by spontaneity and deferment of judgment. Since impulsive children are characterized by their speed of response and their lack of evaluative abilities, it was hypothesized that impulsive youngsters would do as well as reflective ones on creativity indices where ideational fluency is stressed.^ One hundred and ninety five kindergarten through sixth grade students between the age of 6 and 13 were selected from a lower-middle socioeconomic status, urban public school. As a result of numerous criticisms of Kagan et al.'s use of the traditional median split technique on the MFFT, both the median split technique (with or without sex differences as a classifier) and Salkind's norm method (with or without sex differences as a classifier) were employed to identify youngsters as either reflective, impulsive, fast-accurate, or slow-inaccurate. The measure of creativity was the Uses Test which was subsequently scored for fluency, flexibility, and originality. The Verbal Maze Test was used as a measure of problem solving where evaluation skills are primary.^ Results of this investigation indicated that regardless of classification method employed, tempo was found to be unrelated to measures of creativity where fluency was stressed and problem solving where evaluation was stressed. Furthermore, a student's age was found to be unrelated to performance on measures of creativity. However, age was related to problem solving. As subjects mature their problem solving abilities also improve. Sex differences were not found on measures of tempo, creativity and/or problem solving.^ In contrast to numerous populations employed by other investigators, this sample of children was from an economically less advantaged background. An uncharacteristically large percentage (15%) of them were not only recent USA immigrants but a number were from non-Western cultures. Thus, this study's results may have been confounded by cultural and economic factors. Suggestions for future research include replication on a larger group of ethnically-different youngsters in order to lend clarity to the role played by ethnicity on conceptual tempo and other variables. ^

Subject Area

Educational psychology

Recommended Citation

TENENBAUM, LYNN CURCURO, "RELATIONSHIP OF CHILDREN'S CONCEPTUAL TEMPO TO IDEA PRODUCTION AND EVALUATION" (1983). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI8308493.
http://fordham.bepress.com/dissertations/AAI8308493

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