Senior Lecturer in
By the end of this session, colleagues will be able
• Discuss the concept of thinking inside-the-box as
an enabler to innovate
• Share and experience collaborative problem-
solving and ideas generation linked to a specific
constraining learning and teaching scenario
• Identify opportunities for innovative thinking and
action within constraints linked to own practice
to transform the student experience
things or states that
someone thinks are
worthy of attention
They might be
visualised from two
The first sees a
problem as an issue
that needs to be
resolved or rectified,
the second that
there is an
(Jackson, 1996, 3)
… is a creative act but it
usually focuses on…
•core knowledge of discipline
•orientation internally and
… is a creative act that
little-c, big-C (Mihalyi Csikszentmihalyi, 1997)
big C – extraordinary
transformation of a
domain, person well
known in his field –
breaking the norm!
When we think of
creativity we usually
think of big C people
little c – everyday
at personal level, person
not known to many others
In flow (Mihalyi Csikszentmihalyi)
INSIDE: Reflect on the limitations you experience
linked to a specific learning & teaching situation. –
#thinkboxOUTSIDE: Discuss with others and
capture some ideas on the outside
of your box that would help you
resolve your problem.
KEEP ONE SIDE BLANK!!!
On blank side: Ideas to follow up,
things to try!
Join the Greenhouse ;)
monthly gatherings around the university to
share creative and innovative practice,
experiment with learning & teaching ideas
explore opportunities for wider engagement
• immersion in the material
• matures during incubation
• full consciousness, testing in the real world, refined,
• made whole, completed
earliest description of creative process
Wallas G (1926) The art of thought, New York: Harcourt
“People tend to be more
satisfied if they are able to be
creative; and that individually
and collectively we need to be
creative to continually adapt and
invent in an ever-changing
world” (Jackson, 1996, 1)
Csikszentmihalyi, M. (1997) Creativity: Flow and the Psychology of Discovery and
Invention, Harper Perennial
Csikszentmihalyi, M. (1990) Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience, Harper
Dineen, R. (1996) Views from the chalk face. Lecturers’ and students’ perspectives on
the development of creativity in art and design, in: Jackson, N., Oliver, M., Shaw,
M. and Wisdom, J. (1996) Developing Creativity in Higher Education. An
imaginative curriculum, Oxon: Routledge, pp. 109-117
Jackson, N. (1996) Imagining a different world, in: Jackson, N., Oliver, M., Shaw, M.
and Wisdom, J. (1996) Developing Creativity in Higher Education, pp. 1-9
Torrance E P (1974) Torrance Tests of Creative Thinking, Lexington, MA: Personnel
Senior Lecturer in
It can’t be done.
I can’t do it.
There is nothing I can do.
But I am not creative.
That is childish.
What will people think?
Play it safe!
Belief that mistakes are welcome
Ability to see the need for
Belief that problems can be solved
Ability to suspend judgement and
Seeing the good in the bad
Problems lead to improvements
Problem can also be a solution
Reminder to self
• Pay attention to your ideas
• Keep an ideas (e-)booklet!
• Start mind mapping
• Put ideas into practice
• Use available technology
• Change surroundings
• Challenge assumptions
• Create connections, associations
• Develop creative habits of mind
new ideas from existing ideas
combination of existing ideas
brand new ideas
existing ideas in new light
new path when old doesn’t work
1. Asking questions (3 min): Write all questions you can think of, based on the
2. Product improvement (3 min): List ways to change the toy/game so that children
will have more fun playing with it.
3. Unusual uses (3 min): List interesting and unusual uses of a cardboard box.
4. Elaboration (3 min): How many different objects/pictures can you make from the
shapes? Title them.
Torrance Tests of Creative Thinking (1974)
(Scoring for : fluency, flexibility, originality, elaboration)
Do not begin until you are told to do so.
•Try to think of things that no one else will think of.
•Try to think of as many ideas as possible.
•Add details to your ideas to make them complete.
•If you finish before time is up, you may continue to add details or sit quietly.
•Please do not go to the next activity until told to do so.
•Fluency – the sheer number of ideas
•Originality – the statistical infrequency of response
•Flexibility - the degree of difference in the responses, i.e. whether the responses come
from a single domain or multiple domains, and the variety of categories of relevant
•Elaboration - the amount of detail in the response
Guilford’s Alternative Uses Task (1967)
List as many possible uses for a common household item (such as s brick, a paperclip, a newspaper)