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Creativity as a twenty-first-century competence : an exploratory study of provision and reality.

Davies, L. and Newton, D. and Newton, L. (2018) 'Creativity as a twenty-first-century competence : an exploratory study of provision and reality.', Education 3-13., 46 (7). pp. 879-891.


Recently, creativity has begun to be talked about as a twenty-first-century competency [UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation). 2006. The World Conference on Arts Education: Building Creative Capacities for the 21st Century: Working Document, Lisbon, Portugal, 6–9 March 2006. Lisbon: UNESCO]. Several government-endorsed publications have also stressed the importance of fostering creativity in the classroom [Robinson Report. (1999). Great Britain Department for Education and Employment. Department for Culture, Media and Sport. National Advisory Committee on Creativity and Cultural Education. All Our Futures: Creativity and Culture in Education. London: DfEE; DfES. (2004). Excellence and Enjoyment: A Strategy for Primary School. London: DfES; QCA. (2005). Find It! Promote It! London: QCA]. This study aims to explore opportunities to foster creativity following the new National Curriculum’s introduction (DfE (Department for Education). [2013a. National Curriculum for Art & Design. London: DfE; DfE. 2013b. National Curriculum for History. London: DfE; DfE. 2013c. National Curriculum for Science. London: DfE]). It explores provision and attempts to go beyond this into daily classroom practices by interviewing teachers. Analysis indicates a wide variation in terms of in-school provision. Certain schemes of work may be more successful at fostering creativity and that relying purely on the National Curriculum can hinder opportunities for creativity. Teacher responses indicate that they value creativity but find it hard to accurately describe incidents of creativity being fostered and teaching creatively is often confused for teaching for creativity. Training has been designed to address this, although a pervading emphasis on schools’ performativity will mean creativity is not embedded into daily learning to the extent it can be a twenty-first-century competence unless there is a major policy change.

Item Type:Article
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Publisher statement:This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Education 3-13 on 10 October 2017, available online:
Date accepted:22 September 2017
Date deposited:27 October 2017
Date of first online publication:10 October 2017
Date first made open access:10 April 2019

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