The relation between resting state connectivity and creativity in adolescents before and after training

Janna Cousijn, Kiki Zanolie, Robbert J M Munsters, Sietske W Kleibeuker, Eveline A Crone

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

30 Citations (Scopus)


An important component of creativity is divergent thinking, which involves the ability to generate novel and useful problem solutions. In this study, we tested the relation between resting-state functional connectivity of brain areas activated during a divergent thinking task (i.e., supramarginal gyrus, middle temporal gyrus, medial frontal gyrus) and the effect of practice in 32 adolescents aged 15-16. Over a period of two weeks, an experimental group (n = 16) conducted an 8-session Alternative Uses Task (AUT) training and an active control group (n = 16) conducted an 8-session rule switching training. Resting-state functional connectivity was measured before (pre-test) and after (post-test) training. Across groups at pre-test, stronger connectivity between the middle temporal gyrus and bilateral postcentral gyrus was associated with better divergent thinking performance. The AUT-training, however, did not significantly change functional connectivity. Post hoc analyses showed that change in divergent thinking performance over time was predicted by connectivity between left supramarginal gyrus and right occipital cortex. These results provide evidence for a relation between divergent thinking and resting-state functional connectivity in a task-positive network, taking an important step towards understanding creative cognition and functional brain connectivity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e105780
JournalPLoS One (online)
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 2014


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