Creativity and the Simon Task Performance



Creativity, Simon task, Gratton effect, inhibitory control


The aim of this study was to examine performance in the Simon task regarding individual differences in creative behavior measured by The Inventory of Creative Activities and Achievements (ICAA; Diedrich et al., 2018). The study included 105 students and 57 younger working-age individuals (from 19 to 36 years of age). Three-way analyses of variance were carried out on the reaction time in the Simon task given the congruence of the previous and current trials and below/above average results on creative activities and achievements scales. The reaction time in the Simon task was on average shorter in congruent than in incongruent trials (the Simon effect), as well as in the trials preceded by congruent than in those preceded by incongruent trials. The Simon effect was only present in trials preceded by a congruent trial, while reaction times in the trials preceded by incongruent trials were shorter in incongruent than in congruent trials (the Gratton effect). However, neither the Simon nor the Gratton effect were more pronounced within more or less creative participants, but the participants with an above average result on the scale of creative activities reacted on average more slowly than individuals with below the average score. The correlations between the scores on the creativity measures and the different reaction times and indices of the Simon and Gratton effect were not significant. The expected effects related to the Simon task have been obtained in this study, but further research is needed to try to replicate the findings regarding the flexibility of inhibitory control measured by performance in the Simon task and creative behavior.

Author Biography

Ana Šimunić, University of Zadar, Department of Psychology, Zadar, Croatia

Department of Psychology, Post-doc