Lay conceptions of creativity across cultures
Tan, A. G. (1999). Lay conceptions of creativity across cultures. In S. P. Loo (Ed.), Proceeds of the MERA-ERA Joint conference 1999: Educational Challenges in the New Millennium (pp. 772-779). Malacca, Malaysia.
There are many methods that psychologists can use to investigate a construct. Asking people (either experts or laypersons) what they think about a construct, or finding the relation of a construct to other constructs are two of the many methods. Some recent research has given attention to the former approach, i.e. by discovering lay or people’s conceptions of a phenomenon. These conceptions are also known as lay theories, subjective theories, everyday theories, and naive theories. They provide additional explanations to present scientific findings and can help understand phenomena within socio-cultural settings. In this paper, lay conceptions of creativity across cultures (e.g., German, Japanese, Malaysians and Singaporean) are presented. It is believed that every individual can be creative and every society has the potential to nurture creative potentials of individuals. There are various types of creativity and different degree of creativeness within a domain. By observing lay conceptions’ of creativity, researchers and educators may propose suitable intervention programs that can help nurture creativity.
This paper was published in the 1999 Proceedings of the MERA-ERA Joint Conference held at Malacca, Malaysia from 1-3 December 1999