Imagination links with schizotypal beliefs, not with creativity or learning


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

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oaioai:eprints.whiterose.ac.uk:148835Last time updated on 8/10/2019

This paper was published in White Rose Research Online.

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