Relating Personality and Creativity: Considering What and How We Measure

Jeb S. Puryear, Todd Kettler, Anne N. Rinn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Scopus citations


Creativity is a complex construct that is conceptualized and measured in multiple ways. This study examined the relationship between creativity and personality taking this into account. It was hypothesized that applying different conceptions and measures would cause variation in the creativity–personality relationship. The participants (N = 224) were undergraduate students and completed six creativity measures, a personality inventory, and a demographic questionnaire. Personality predicted more creative production (R2 =.277) than creative potential (R2 =.176) and more self-reported creativity (R2 =.348) than that which was externally rated (R2 =.149). Openness was most consistently and strongly related to creativity, but other personality factors varied in their influence and some demonstrated suppression effects. Overall, the results suggest that despite relatively small effects of personality on creativity, there appear to be meaningful differences in the relationships depending on conception and measurement. Implications for educational settings and future research are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)232-245
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Creative Behavior
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2019


  • creative achievement
  • creativity
  • divergent thinking
  • measurement
  • personality


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