Date of Award
Master of Arts (MA)
The effects of type of personal involvement and need for cognition on information search behaviors and creative problem solving were investigated. It was predicted that participants who are involved through the personal relevancy of the outcome of a problem would engage in more information search behaviors and be more creative than participants who are involved through having their values and morals engaged. It was also predicted that participants high in need for cognition would engage in more information search behaviors and would be more creative than would participants low in need for cognition. Results showed that information search behaviors effectively predicted creative problem solving. Results also revealed advantages of high outcome involvement and detriments of high value involvement. Participants who were asked to provide a solution to a high outcome-involvement problem engaged in more information search behaviors and were more creative than participants who were asked to solve either a high value-involvement problem or a low involvement problem. Participants with high value involvement engaged in more information search behaviors but wrote solutions that were even less creative when compared to participants who had a low level of involvement. The effects of type of personal involvement on creative problem solving were not mediated by information search behaviors. Participants' need for cognition was not related to information search behaviors or creativity. Based on the results, it is suggested that organizations can enhance employee creative problem solving by providing them with the time and resources needed to engage in information search and by creating high personal involvement in organizational outcomes. However, organizations should avoid heavily engaging employees' values and morals because high value involvement can be detrimental to creative problem solving.
Illies, Jody J., "Information search and creativity: The role of need for cognition and personal involvement" (1999). Student Work. 157.