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Imagination links with schizotypal beliefs, not with creativity or learning

von Stumm, Sophie and Scott, Hannah (2019) Imagination links with schizotypal beliefs, not with creativity or learning. British Journal of Psychology, 110 (4). 707 - 726. ISSN 0007-1269

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Identification Number: 10.1111/bjop.12369


Imagination refers to creating mental representations of concepts, ideas, and sensations that are not contemporaneously perceived by the senses. Although it is key to human individuality, research on imagination is scarce. To address this gap, we developed here a new psychometric test to assess individual differences in imagination and explored the role of imagination for learning, creativity, and schizotypal beliefs. In a laboratory-based (N = 180) and an online study (N = 128), we found that imagination is only weakly associated with learning achievement and creativity, accounting for 2–8% of the variance. By contrast, imagination accounted for 22.5% of the variance in schizotypal beliefs, suggesting overall that imagination may be more indicative of cognitive eccentricities rather than benefit the accumulation of knowledge or production of novel and useful ideas.

Item Type: Article
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Additional Information: © 2019 The British Psychological Society
Divisions: Psychological and Behavioural Science
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Date Deposited: 03 Dec 2018 15:01
Last Modified: 20 Oct 2021 00:40

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