Building individual semantic networks and exploring their relationships with creativity

AbstractThe associative theory of creativity suggests that creative abilities rely on the organization of semantic associations in memory. Recent research has demonstrated that semantic network methods allow testing this hypothesis. The aim of the current study was to investigate the properties of semantic networks at the individual level, in relation to creative abilities. Semantic judgement ratings were used to estimate individual semantic networks, whose topological properties measured by several graph metrics were correlated with individual creativity scores. We found a correlation between the theoretical semantic distance of our stimuli and the relatedness ratings given by the participants, demonstrating the validity of our approach. Importantly, we found a close relationship between creative abilities assessed by an achievement questionnaire and divergent thinking tasks and individual semantic network metrics, replicating and extending previous similar findings.

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