Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Workforce Education and Development

First Advisor

Freeburg, Beth

Second Advisor

Workman, Jane


AN ABSTRACT OF THE DISSERTATION OF Joyce Robin Robinson, for the Doctor of Philosophy degree in Workforce Education and Development, presented on June 27, 2011, at Southern Illinois University Carbondale. TITLE: CREATIVITY IN FASHION DESIGN STUDENTS MAJOR PROFESSOR: Dr. Beth W. Freeburg and Dr. Jane E. Workman The purpose of this study was to examine relationships among environmental influences, changes in domain specific knowledge, and changes in tolerance of ambiguity as well as changes in creativity of individuals majoring in fashion design at four-year universities. This study was based on the confluence theoretical approach which holds that multiple components must connect in order for creativity to occur. This was a quantitative study involving participants from multiple universities with four-year fashion design programs. The study used online surveys to gather data on attitudes, opinions and achievements. Dependent variables were creativity and tolerance of ambiguity. Independent variables included tolerance of ambiguity, family background, and demographic information. The findings revealed: (1) media such as art, music and literature were positively correlated with creativity; (2) parental encouragement was positively correlated with creativity; (3) electronic media, such as television, computers, and the internet were negatively correlated with creativity; (4) lessons (e.g., in sports, music, dance, cooking, or childcare) was negatively correlated with creativity; (5) available space to create, explore, and experiment was negatively correlated with creativity; (6) there was a positive correlation between creativity and tolerance of ambiguity. This information will contribute to the existing knowledge on creativity. Parents and Instructors may use this information to help develop and enhance creativity.




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