Stages Of The Creative Process

Colin Martindale, like Hoppe, employed EEGs. Martindale examined particular brain wave patterns and their association with specific stages within the problem-solving process. Findings indicated that EEG patterns vary as a function of stage of the creative process, at least in creative individuals. These phases are usually labeled preparation, incubation, illumination (or inspiration), and verification. Creative individuals have higher alpha during the inspirational phase of creative work than during elaboration phases. There are no differences in basal alpha. EEG was measured at right posterior temporal areas.

Another technique for the study of the biology of creativity involves individuals who have had accidental trauma to the nervous system. In his 1982 book, Art, Mind, and Brain, Howard Gardner tells how through use of this technique he was able to infer much about processes that are very important for creativity, such as the use of metaphor. This kind of research is useful because it identifies particular parts of the brain. However, the locations studied are not chosen by the researchers but of course are the result of various unfortunate accidents.

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