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Creativity and problem solving

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The importance of creativity

It is sometimes thought that creativity applies mainly to the arts - painting, sculpture, music and so on. However creativity is relevant to all human activities.

Major leaps in theoretical physics have owed much more to physicists' creative imagination than their experimental work. Organisations recognise the importance of creativity in achieving their goals and expect employees to have developed creative skills so that they will be more effective in their jobs.

To cope with the demands of the future and a continuing change in all aspects of society, people will have to be more flexible, fast-thinking and imaginative than ever before. They will need the skills to produce rapid, effective answers to unfamiliar problems in new situations.

Creativity also plays an important part in being a competent student. This is because learning involves much more than just remembering facts. It demands the ability to analyse and synthesise existing knowledge and come up with fresh insights and original ideas.