The development of productive thinking skills in fifth-grade children

James L. Wardrop, William L. Goodwin, Herbert J. Klausmeier, Robert M. Olton, Martin V. Covington, Richard S. Crutchfield, Teckla Ronda

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A controlled experiment was conducted in forty-four fifth-grade classrooms to investigate the extent to which creativity and problem-solving skills of children could be nurtured through a series of self-instructional programmed lessons. Also studied was the relationship of such skills to (1) learner characteristics (IQ and sex) and (2) classroom “environment” as it may have facilitated creative thinking. Significant differences were found favoring the experimental group (which received the programmed lessons). Improvement in productive thinking skills was found for both boys and girls of both higher and lower IQ. Greater gains were found in classrooms providing relatively little support and encouragement for productive thinking. Also the performance of girls on the productive thinking measures exceeded that of boys and there was a strong positive relationship to IQ.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)67-77
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Experimental Education
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jun 1969

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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