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Barriers to Creativity in Engineering Education: A Study of Instructors and Students Perceptions

[+] Author Affiliations
Stephany Foley, Kazem Kazerounian

University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT

Paper No. DETC2007-34424, pp. 539-555; 17 pages
  • ASME 2007 International Design Engineering Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference
  • Volume 4: ASME/IEEE International Conference on Mechatronic and Embedded Systems and Applications and the 19th Reliability, Stress Analysis, and Failure Prevention Conference
  • Las Vegas, Nevada, USA, September 4–7, 2007
  • Conference Sponsors: Design Engineering Division and Computers and Information in Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 0-7918-4805-1 | eISBN: 0-7918-3806-4
  • Copyright © 2007 by ASME


This paper studies “creativity” in engineering education, by examining the perception of instructors and students. We aims to identify factors that impede a creative environment (creativity blockers). The study entails review of established research in the fields of psychology and educational psychology to identify factors which create an educational environment conducive to creativity. These factors are formalized in the Ten Maxims of Creativity in Education, a set of criteria that constitute an educational environment conducive to fostering creativity in students. These maxims form the basis for our work in examining the contemporary engineering education. Extensive surveys are designed, created, distributed and statistically quantified to study the perceptions of engineering educators and students, in comparison to non-engineering educators and students. The results unfortunately show that the current engineering student experiences almost none of the Ten Maxims of Creativity as a part of their academic experience.

Copyright © 2007 by ASME



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