U.S. schools need to place more emphasis on creativity in order to best prepare their students for today's work environment, new research finds.
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The study by Adobe revealed that 78 percent of today's employees think creativity is an important trait for their job, while 85 percent believe creative thinking is critical for problem-solving in their career.
Based on research, there is a growing belief that creativity is not just a personality trait. Nearly 70 percent of the professionals surveyed believe creativity is a skill that can be learned.
Knowing the value of the ability to come up with innovative ideas in the workplace, more than 70 percent of workers said creative thinking should be taught in school as a class like math or science, with 82 percent wishing they had more exposure to the skill as students.
"Around the world, educators are already fostering creative thinking with their students," said Jon Perera, vice president of education, Adobe. "What this study is telling us is that we need to empower and accelerate this shift. Creativity is a critical competency that should be taught within all disciplines. This will drive the global economy and the career success of the next generation."
Many employees had no idea how much their job would depend on their being able to think outside the box. The study discovered that while nearly 80 percent of today's workforce considers creative thinking an important aspect of their job, just 57 percent of those same employees thought creativity would be important to their career while they were in college.
Developing creative thinkers would do much more than just boost the careers of future generations, the study found. Nearly 90 percent of employees believe creativity is required for economic growth, and is valuable to society as a whole.
The study, "Creativity and Education: Why it Matters," was based on interviews with 1,000 full-time salaried workers ages 25 and older with at least a four-year college degree.