The purpose of this study was to explore the relationship between divergent thinking and self-esteem in age groups across the adult life-span. A total of 218 subjects ranging in age from 18 to 84 years responded to a personal data inventory, a self-esteem measure, and a taped auditory free-response exercise in divergent thinking. Scores were obtained for fluency, flexibility, and originality of thought, and for self-esteem. Self-esteem significantly predicts divergent thinking across age groups; age does not account for a significant amount of the variance in divergent thinking scores. Middle-aged adults score highest on measures of divergent thought and self-esteem. Self-esteem is significantly associated with the expression of divergent thinking in middle-aged adults and elderly persons.

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