Year of Award


Document Type

Thesis - Campus Access Only

Degree Type

Master of Arts (MA)

Degree Name


Other Degree Name/Area of Focus

Gifted Education

Department or School/College

Teaching and Learning

Committee Chair

Jeb Puryear

Commitee Members

Dr. Stephanie Reid, Jeff Ross


creativity, English Language Arts, rubrics


University of Montana

Subject Categories

Educational Assessment, Evaluation, and Research | Elementary Education | Gifted Education


This study analyzes the effect of graphic organizers on the creative writing of fifth grade students in a Montana school. To complete the study, a group of nine fifth grade students’ writing was analyzed and evaluated based on a rubric that focused on four key criteria of creativity: fluency, flexibility, originality, and elaboration. The results of the baseline assessment data were compared to the results of the final unit’s data. The data showed promise with a minimum of 33% growth within each criterion. Students experienced the greatest growth within the criterion of elaboration with a minimum of 67% growth. The initial assessment provided students with minimal guidance on how to complete the assignment, while the subsequent assessments required students to complete a variety of graphic organizers in order to develop and support their creative writing. All students stated that the usage of graphic organizers was beneficial to the development of creativity within their writing. Upon the conclusion of the study, students began to acknowledge opportunities for their usage in academic situations beyond this domain. The initial student hesitation to utilize graphic organizers to support their writing faded and students began to recognize the functionality of graphic organizers to assist in creative development across subject areas.

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