TWO-WAY ANOVA: CAN YOU FIND YOUR MUSE?

Can You Find Your Muse?

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You must read each slide, and complete any questions on the slide, in sequence.

Welcome

Can You Find Your Muse?

Authors:

Kelly M. Goedert, Seton Hall University

Susan A. Nolan, Seton Hall University

Kaylise D. Algrim, Seton Hall University

Where does creative inspiration come from? An international research team examined how changing the way a problem was described affected how creative people could be in finding a solution. After participants performed a depleting (i.e., mentally draining) task, the researchers hypothesized that people would be more productive if a creative task were described as easy than if it were described as hard (Giacomantonio, Ten Velden, & De Dreu, 2016).

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Let’s try a mentally draining task like one the researchers used. In the study, participants wrote about a place they had recently visited. Some had no restrictions, but others “were asked to write the story without using the letters U and K” (p. 70).

It’s hard, isn’t it? Imagine that you then had to complete a new, creative task that is described as hard (while other people complete the same task described as easy). We’ll explore whether the researchers found that the depleting task affected participants’ performance in the new task if it was described as hard as opposed to easy.

In this experiment, participants in the control group (the non-depleted group) were given 4 minutes to write a short story about a place they had recently visited (a relatively easy task). A second group of participants (the depleted group) was given the same task but were told to not use the letters “U” or “K” in the story—a much harder task, as you likely discovered for yourself!

After the first task, all participants were told that they would next participate in a study of creativity. They were told that while creativity sometimes arises through inspiration, it can also come about through perseverance.
All participants were told that they should use perseverance to get through the creative task. The catch? Half of the participants were told that perseverance on the task was easy and half were told that perseverance on the task was hard.
For the creative task, all participants were asked to come up with as many creative uses for a cord as possible. The researchers then counted the number of creative uses generated by each participant. In a section of their paper called “Participants and Design,”
the researchers wrote “Participants (*N* = 112; *M* = 21.78 years; 36 males) received course credit, or were paid €7, and were randomly assigned to a 2 (depletion vs. no depletion) X 2 (perseverance described as [hard] vs. easy) between-subjects design” (p. 70).

Correct! A 2 X 2 design means that there are two independent variables (depletion level and perseverance), and it is between-subjects (which is the same as between-groups), which means that there are different participants in each of the conditions.

Actually, a 2 X 2 design means that there are two independent variables (depletion level and perseverance), and it is between-subjects (which is the same as between-groups), which means that there are different participants in each of the conditions.

As we indicated on the previous screen, the researchers described using a “2 (depletion vs. no depletion) X 2 (perseverance described as [hard] vs. easy) between-subjects design” (p. 70).

Correct! Because it is a 2 X 2 between-groups design, we know there are four cells, or distinct groups, in the experiment, which represent the crossing of the two independent variables (depletion level and perseverance). You can see a table of the four cells on the next screen.

Actually, because it is a 2 X 2 between-groups design, we know there are four cells, or distinct groups, in the experiment, which represent the crossing of the two independent variables (depletion level and perseverance). You can see a table of the four cells on the next screen.

Given the research design, the researchers reported that they performed a “2 (depletion vs. no depletion) X 2 (perseverance framed as hard vs. easy) ANOVA” (p. 70). The table here depicts the four cells in the study.

Task framing | Non-depleted | Depleted |
---|---|---|

Easy | Non-depleted with perseverance described as easy | Depleted with perseverance described as easy |

Hard | Non-depleted with perseverance described as hard | Depleted with perseverance described as hard |

Correct! A two-way ANOVA always produces three F statistics: one for each of the two independent variables and a third testing the interaction of the two independent variables.

Actually, a two-way ANOVA always produces three F statistics: one for each of the two independent variables and a third testing the interaction of the two independent variables.

When reporting their results in a journal article, researchers typically do not provide readers with the complete source table for the ANOVA, but they do provide the *F* statistics and the probability information associated with each *F* statistic.
In the current study, the researchers reported: “A 2 X 2 ANOVA revealed, ﬁrst of all, a main effect for depletion, indicating that depleted individuals generated less ideas (*M* = 9.40, *SD* = 5.64) than non-depleted individuals (*M* = 12.44, *SD* = 7.34),
*F*(1, 108) = 6.03, *p* = .016, *η ^{2}* = .05. This effect was qualiﬁed by the expected interaction with [perseverance],

Correct! We can see that the p value for the main effect of depletion level (.016) and the p value for the interaction of depletion level and perseverance (.036) are both less than the typical alpha level of 0.05, which means they are statistically significant.

Actually, we can see that the p value for the main effect of depletion level (.016) and the p value for the interaction of depletion level and perseverance (.036) are both less than the typical alpha level of 0.05, which means they are statistically significant.

image description

The bar graph shows the interaction between the independent variables of depletion level (depleted or non-depleted) and task framing (easy or hard) on the dependent variable, “Number of creative uses.” The horizontal x-axis is labeled “Depletion level” and shows two pairs of vertical bars, one pair for depleted and one pair for non-depleted. Within each pair, there is a green bar for “Easy” and an orange bar for “Hard.” The vertical y-axis is labeled “Number of creative uses” and the scores range from 0 to 15, at intervals of 5. There is also a color key with green bars representing perseverance described as easy and orange bars representing perseverance described as hard. For the depleted condition, participants averaged about eleven creative uses when the task was framed as easy and seven creative uses when the task was framed as hard. For the non-depleted condition, participants averaged about twelve creative uses when the task was framed as easy and thirteen creative uses when the task was framed as hard.

Correct! The manipulation of the description of perseverance seemed to matter only for the depleted group, who did better, on average, when the task was described as easy rather than hard.

Actually, manipulation the description of perseverance seemed to matter only for the depleted group, who did better, on average, when the task was described as easy rather than hard.

image description

The bar graph shows the interaction between the independent variables of depletion level (depleted or non-depleted) and task framing (easy or hard) on the dependent variable, “Number of creative uses.” The horizontal x-axis is labeled “Depletion level” and shows two pairs of vertical bars, one pair for depleted and one pair for non-depleted. Within each pair, there is a green bar for “Easy” and an orange bar for “Hard.” The vertical y-axis is labeled “Number of creative uses” and the scores range from 0 to 15, at intervals of 5. There is also a color key with green bars representing perseverance described as easy and orange bars representing perseverance described as hard. For the depleted condition, participants averaged about eleven creative uses when the task was framed as easy and seven creative uses when the task was framed as hard. For the non-depleted condition, participants averaged about twelve creative uses when the task was framed as easy and thirteen creative uses when the task was framed as hard.

Correct! When visually averaging across the two bars representing the easy and hard descriptions of perseverance, we see that the depleted group generated fewer creative uses, on average, than did the non-depleted group.

Actually, when visually averaging across the two bars representing the easy and hard descriptions of perseverance, we see that the depleted group generated fewer creative uses, on average, than did the non-depleted group.

Correct! In both cases, the effect size statistic is .05, which is a small-to-medium effect. Recall that a medium effect is 0.06.

Actually, in both cases, the effect size statistic is .05, is a small-to-medium effect. Recall that a medium effect is 0.06.

The bottom line: Creativity takes effort. This study shows that when you feel stuck, the story you tell yourself can make a real difference in your creative output. Tell yourself it’s not as hard as you think—and you’ll be right!

Maureen Lingga / EyeEm/Getty Images

REFERENCES

Giacomantonio, M., Ten Velden, F. S., & De Dreu, C. K. W. (2016). Framing effortful strategies as easy enables depleted individuals to execute complex tasks effectively. *Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 62, *68–74.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jesp.2015.10.005

Guilford, J. P. (1967). Creativity: Yesterday, today, and tomorrow. *Journal of Creative Behavior, 1, *3–14.