ERIC Number: ED406635
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1996-Aug
A Contemporary Perspective on the Psychology of Productive Thinking.
The book "Productive Thinking", by Gestalt psychologist Max Wertheimer, was published over 50 years ago, yet it continues to wield influence. The book's argument on productive thinking, and why it is still relevant today, are the focus of this paper. Productive thinking involves going from a situation of bewilderment or confusion about some issue to a new state in which everything about the issue is clear. The process involves a kind of reorganization, and marks a transition from a state that is meaningless to one that is meaningful. Aural and visual examples of productive thinking are presented, along with word games and the importance of problem reformulation. A number of logic problems are presented and the possibility of their solution is explored. Many scholarly reactions to the book's theme are presented in detail, and some of the research that has been initiated by productive thinking is explained. The ascendance of computer-based, information processing as a paradigm for cognitive psychology is discussed, as well as its application to productive thinking. Contains 50 references. (RJM)
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Psychological Association (104th, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, August 9-13, 1996).