Destination Imagination
Sarah Marie Catalana


By Sarah Marie Catalana
I am a current graduate student at the University of Georgia pursuing a doctoral degree in Educational Psychology, with an emphasis in Gifted and Creative Education. My research interests include the relationship between creativity and motivation, creative self efficacy, and the importance of metacognition in the creative thinking process. Destination Imagination was the most influential and inspiring program that I ever participated in, and the lessons I learned still have a great impact on my studies today. It is my hope that this Wiki illustrates the great passion that I have for Destination Imagination, and the importance of creativity in education.
There are several creative problem solving programs that exist to manifest creative talents in children and inspire them to apply creativity both in and outside of the classroom. This Wiki will focus on a specific program, Destination Imagination, that was started in 1999. Each year, over 125,000 children and 38,000 volunteers are involved in the program. The program has been shown to have a drastic impact on the academic, creative and social development of children world wide ("Who we are", 2012).

A Crash Course in Destination Imagination
According to the official Destination Imagination webpage, the mission of Destination Imagination is:
To develop opportunities that inspire the global community of learners to utilize diverse approaches in applying 21st Century Skills and creativity.The Destination Imagination program encourages teams of learners to have fun, take risks, focus, and frame challenges while incorporating STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics), the arts, and service learning. Our participants learn patience, flexibility, persistence, ethics, respect for others and their ideas, and the collaborative problem solving process. Teams may showcase their solutions at a tournament ("Who we are", 2012).
The Challenge Program is the most popular program offered by Destination Imagination. Teams of up to seven children work throughout the school year to create solutions (typically in performance form) to intricate, open-ended challenges developed by educators and experts in various other fields. The competition season begins in September, when seven challenges are released and teams choose which challenge to solve. Each challenge targets a particular area of curriculum: Technical, Scientific, Fine Arts, Improvisational, Structural and Service Learning. Teams present their solutions at tournaments and also compete in an Instant Challenge portion of the competition. Most states have regional and state competitions. The top-scoring teams progress to Global Finals, which is held each May ("Challenge Program", 2012). For more information on the Challenge Program, visit the
Official Destination Imagination Website

We are Pleased to Present the P's
Theoretical approaches to creativity are often described in terms of which specific asset of creativity they emphasize. These assets are commonly referred to the 4 P’s of creativity and include Process, Person/Personality, Press/Place, and Product (Rhodes, 1961).
Person personality.png
press place.png

Creativity Theories
Creativity is a complex concept that is difficult to define. However, various theorists have conducted studies and created theories which have made a lasting impact on our understanding of creativity. Follow the links below to learn more about the major creativity theories and how they relate to the construct of Destination Imagination.

Destination Imagination in Action
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Why Participate?
Students who participate in Destination Imagination report higher self confidence, and a greater ability to think on their feet. Most importantly, they have fun while they are learning! In fact, several Destination Imagination participants Credit Destination Imagination with better grades. Destination Imagination fosters the whole child, encouraging academic, social, and emotional development (Bowen, A., and Griffith, M., 2012). Visit Destination Imagination's Success Stories page to learn about how Destination Imagination has made a positive impact on well-known individuals ("Success Stories", 2012).
Destination Imagination has received national attention for its success in educational innovation. Follow the links below to learn more about Destination Imagination's supporters.
Educator InterviewsParticipant TestimonialsPartner and Sponsor Interviews

How can YOU get involved?
Whether you are a student, parent, educator, or community member, there are ample opportunities to become involved in Destination Imagination. Your time will not be wasted! It has been over six years since I have participated directly in the Destination Imagination program, and I still continue to benefit from the program. As illustrated by this Wiki, Destination Imagination is rooted in sound creativity theories, and has been proven to make a positive impact on the lives of children who participate. Follow the links learn how you can Volunteer with Destination Imagination, Become a sponsor, or even Start your own team.


Bowen, A. and Griffith, M. (2012). Students Credit Destination Imagination with Better Grades. Retrieved November 28, 2012, from

[Camera Film] Retrieved November 28, 2012, from

Destination Imagination. (2012). Challenge Program. Retrieved November 26,2012, from program

Destination Imagination Colorado. (2012). Practice Instant Challenges. Retrieved November 28, 2012, from

Destination Imagination. (2012). Who we are. Retrieved November 26, 2012, from

Destination Imagination. (2012). Success Stories. Retrieved November 28, 2012, from

[Lightbulb] Retrieved November 28, 2012, from

Rhodes, M. (1961). An analysis of creativity. Phi Delta Kappan, 42, 305-310.