Creativity as a learned skill : the role of deliberate practice in the development of creativity



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This study provides insights into the development of creativity, and specifically into the role that deliberate practice plays in the development of creativity. At the time of this writing, little research had been conducted with regards to methodologies of developing creativity, with the literature tending to focus primarily on measures of creativity. Further, research on the use of deliberate practice has thus far been restricted to those fields that have a focus on motor skills, or routine behaviors. As such, the current study represents the first attempt at applying deliberate practice to a field more nebulous in nature. Given the prime value assigned to creativity in the advertising industry, and indeed in industries across all domains, the value of this study is in the potential for guidance in terms of the education of creative professionals, as well as in increasing creative output. Interviews were conducted with twenty-nine creative professionals representing a diverse set of domains, from advertising and film to photography, music, and comic books. The results present a thorough examination of the use of deliberate practice by these creative individuals, and provides an overview of how deliberate practice operates in the development of creativity. The findings suggest that deliberate practice does indeed play a significant role in developing creativity across a wide swatch of domains, and that those incorporating deliberate practice certainly experienced greater strides in development and performance. Further, findings suggested the existence of previously unreported factors utilized by creative in their development. Study limitations, future research, and significant findings are presented in addition to the core findings.