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Kristin Kutti

  • Faculty of Art and Culture
  • Art Teacher
  • ma
  • Factors Affecting Creativity and Barriers to Creativity in Art Classes Based on the Example of the School Stage III
  • Tutor(s): Jane Remm, MA

From the point of view of art education, it is important to know that teaching art consists not only of teaching technical skills, but also of developing other important competencies, such as communication skills, cooperation skills, critical thinking skills and creative problem-solving skills. External factors that inhibit creativity can be reduced by teacher. In addition to the arts-related activities, it is necessary to help students become aware of the essential skills for the creativity process, their potential and to teach students to analyze themselves. External factors that affect creativity, including teaching and assessment, could be perceived by students as informative, motivative and supportive rather than controlling. Changing external motivation leads to internal changes in self-determination and decreases barriers to creativity. The ideal endeavor in art education is the development of students’ competencies to a level where they use their creative abilities in such a suitable way in later life that there are no barriers to creativity.

Factors affecting creativity are self-determination, attitudes and habits, openness to experience, flexibility, intrinsic motivation, competencies including creative thinking skills, domain-specific competencies. External affecting factors of creativity are tasks on current functioning level that consider zone of proximal development (capability), rules and regulations, external rewards (assessment and recognition), competition and social pressure, time, fatigue, art tools. Each factor affecting creativity can include a number of limitations and obstacles.

The aim of the master’s thesis was to describe the factors affecting creativity and to point out the barriers to creativity in art classes. The theoretical part of the master’s thesis discussed the factors affecting creativity, on which the empirical research was also based. Theoretical research highlighted the interaction of personality and external factors in creative self-determination and the expression of creativity.

In the empirical study, the answer to the research question was found as to what kind of barriers to creativity occur among basic school stage III students in art lessons.
A survey was proceeded among 8th and 9th grade students in one Estonian school.

Empirical research has shown that although the students surveyed are aware that they have the potential to be creative, but in their opinion they operate in their comfort zone and tend to be insecure, which is increased by dependence on external reward (assessment and recognition). The students surveyed are willing to use their knowledge, skills and experience when problems arise, but a lack of divergent thinking skills can be a disincentive to creativity, and fear of failure increases habitual behavior and follow strictly the rules.