QMUL student wins category in ‘Dance your PhD’ competition

Queen Mary University of London (QMUL) PhD student Judit Pétervári has won the social sciences category of Science Magazine’s ‘Dance your PhD’ competition, which challenges scientists around the world to transform their research into dance videos.

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Titled ‘The evaluation of creative ideas’, Ms Pétervári’s video explores the psychology of creativity - specifically the way we rate creative ideas. It presents creativity as ‘a room which needs to be furnished in order to see how the different components add up’, comparing the experiences of laypeople and experts.

“It’s quite difficult to judge creative ideas because there is no clear threshold for creativity and most people do not usually verbalise what creativity means to them”, Ms Pétervári explains. “Experts are much more confident about which criteria should be used to evaluate creative ideas, while laypeople experience more vagueness and tension.”

Commenting on the video production process, Ms Pétervári added: "Making this video made the process of writing my thesis much more enjoyable. After many hours spent with my draft, I could see the knowledge generated from my research coming to life”.

“I firmly believe that a video can say more than thousand words and we worked a lot as a team on getting the small details right, so our message would get through regardless of language or reading speed. I can now enter my examination with a movie version of my PhD, and I’ve had many conversations about my research with people who never understood exactly what I was doing over the past few years."

Ms Pétervári is soon to finish her PhD at the Dynamic Learning and Decision Making Laboratory at QMUL, which is led by Dr Magda Osman. Her research focuses on the evaluation of creative ideas.

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