Yet participants’ performance was not improved even when they were given specific instructions to do so.
That is, direct and explicit instructions to think outside the box did not help.
It was an appealing and apparently convincing message.
Indeed, the concept enjoyed such strong popularity and intuitive appeal that no one bothered to check the facts.
Rather than disproving the myth, in other words, the experiment might instead offer evidence that creativity is an ability that one is born with, or born lacking, hence why information from the environment didn't impact the results at all.
In the 1970s, however, very few were even aware of its existence, even though it had been around for almost a century.
If you have tried solving this puzzle, you can confirm that your first attempts usually involve sketching lines inside the imaginary square.
The first group was given the same instructions as the participants in Guilford’s experiment.
The second group was told that the solution required the lines to be drawn outside the imaginary box bordering the dot array.