Learning environments that support student creativity: Developing the SCALE

Carmen Richardson, Punyashloke Mishra

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

149 Scopus citations


In this article, we report on the creation of an instrument that offers educators a practical tool to aid in the design of learning environments that support student creativity. Based on our literature review, classroom observations, and administrator feedback, three key areas were found to support student creativity: Learner Engagement, Physical Environment, and Learning Climate. These three areas create the foundation of the SCALE: Support for Creativity in a Learning Environment, a tool that provides educators with specific examples for the support of creativity. The 14 items of the SCALE focus on learning tasks, classroom practices, interactions between students and teachers, and the physical setting and availability of resources. The empirical study of creativity in education has grown in the past 10 years as experts have called for schools to prepare students with the skills that enable them to be innovative and creative. However, much of what has been produced has not been practical or immediately useful for educators because the trend has been to focus on behavior or easily measurable aspects of creativity rather than creative potential. The SCALE offers one way of filling this gap.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)45-54
Number of pages10
JournalThinking Skills and Creativity
StatePublished - Mar 2018


  • Creative climate
  • Creativity
  • Learning environment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education


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