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Course Date: 14 July 2014 to 25 August 2014 (6 weeks)
Let’s make history together - again!
Dr. Kathryn Jablokow, Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Engineering Design is a leading scholar in creativity and problem solving, with a special focus on engineering creativity. She was recognized as a Fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) in 2008 for her work in this arena. She holds BS, MS, and PhD degrees in Electrical Engineering from The Ohio State University. Dr. Jablokow has won numerous awards inside and outside Penn State for her teaching, including the Keck Foundation’s national Engineering Excellence in Teaching Award. She developed and teaches (online and in the classroom) four courses that span the progression from the creative individual to problem solving teams and their leadership, as well as invention and creative design. Dr. Jablokow is passionate about helping students recognize and leverage their own unique brands of creativity that stem from who they are, what they know, and what motivates them to act.
Dr. Darrell Velegol, Distinguished Professor of Chemical Engineering at Penn State, is an award-winning teacher and researcher. Dr. Velegol earned his PhD in Chemical Engineering in 1997 from Carnegie Mellon. As a researcher, he has worked with his students to published more than 70 papers in the field of colloid science, especially with regard to interparticle forces, colloidal assembly, electrokinetic phenomena, and colloidal motors.
As an educator, Professor Velegol believes that when young scholars are pursuing fields they are passionate about, they have the capacity for greatness. He has written about a transformative system of education in his book, "Wild Scholars" (2011). In addition, he has been educating about and developing a field called “Physics of Community”, in which he uses the principles of Chemical Engineering, Chemistry, Physics, Biology, and Ecology to explain and model human decision making.
For almost 14 years, Dr. Velegol has shared his CENTER practices with 1000s of students. In each young person he works with, he sees the capacity for greatness.
Dr. Jack V. Matson, Emeritus Professor of Environmental Engineering at Penn State, is a prize winning innovator who developed courses in innovative design and entrepreneurship based on “Intelligent Fast Failure”. He brings an original and off-beat approach to teaching. His philosophy is to stimulate creativity by encouraging students to risk failure and that failure is essential to innovation. He centers his techniques on teaching people to unlearn years of practicing risk aversion by stressing the connection between creativity, innovation, and risk. His academic area of interest is in environmental engineering, and he is an expert in waste management, industrial water, wastewater treatment, and hazardous waste.
He holds BS and MS degrees in Chemical Engineering and a PhD in Environmental Engineering from Rice University. As an entrepreneur, he has started up and is involved in three companies: Matson and Associates Inc.,Envinity Inc., and Bhutopia LLC. Also, he has written a number of books on innovation including Innovate or Die!, Art of Innovation using Intelligent Fast Failure, and Breakthrough Innovation.
Since joining Penn
State in 1999, Liz has taught design courses in a variety of engineering
departments. Starting in 2000, Liz has been involved in growing the entrepreneurship
culture at Penn State. She is currently co-director of the Lion Launch Pad, a
student-centric on-campus business accelerator program and is also involved in
entrepreneurship research funded by NSF and NCIIA (National Collegiate
Inventors and Innovators Alliance). Prior to 2012, Liz supported ASME’s annual
Innovation Showcase (I-SHOW), was a faculty adviser for the Kern Family
Foundation’s KEEN (Kern Engineering Entrepreneurship Network) program, and
served as Division Chair and Program Chair of the ASEE Entrepreneurship
Division. Starting in 2013, Liz became director of Penn State’s new
Intercollege Minor in Entrepreneurship and Innovation (ENTI), with unique areas
for undergraduate students to select from, including food, new media, technology,
apps and websites, hospitality industry and entrepreneurship in developing
communities. Liz's BSEE degree is from Penn State, and MSEE degrees from
MIT and Johns Hopkins University.
This course empowers learners to develop their creative human potential
to improve, enhance, and transform their businesses, communities,
and personal lives. Processes like Intelligent Fast Failure will teach
you rapid prototyping skills, while the Adaption-Innovation creative style
spectrum will help you understand how and why your ideas are unique - and
how you can work better with others to solve complex problems.
Personal reflection tools like CENTER add a character development dimension
to the course that is an important first step towards unlocking your creative
potential. Along the way, you will engage with a rich set of tools, exercises,
and metrics in order to understand these concepts and how they impact the
development of your creative life and career.
Joining the team are Dr.
Susan Russell, Associate Professor of Theater and Dr. John Bellanti, Psychologist.
Susan will lend her unique artistic talents to video production and course
projects. John is a life coach and will be guiding students from a behavioral
change perspective during their creative journey in the course.
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Why is it important for me to to take this course?
Creativity and the process of innovation are essential to the growth and
well being of individuals, organizations, and nations. In this course,
you will have the opportunity to learn how you can be a strong positive
force in your society and how to pass on your knowledge and experience
to others so that everyone will prosper.
Are there different tracks I can take based upon my level of commitment?
From previous MOOC offerings, we know that not all students engage with
the course materials and assignments in the same way or with the same intensity.
This is fully understandable! You might have lots of time and interest,
and so are ready to invest deeply in this course; or you might have many
life commitments that leave you with less time, but still want to learn
many of the concepts that this course will offer. We want to make our class
useful for YOU -- whatever your life and interests lead you to right now
-- and so we are creating three kinds of student profiles, called Adventurers,
Explorers, and Tourists.
Adventurers. You have signed up for the class and are serious about
mastering the entire course. You are committed to doing the course-related
quizzes, activities, and assignments, AND you are eager and able to complete
a course-long project, either alone or as part of a team. As an Adventurer,
you want to take full advantage of this great opportunity to build on your
creative potential and create something innovative that will change your
life or the lives of those around you for the better!
Explorers. You are eager to learn and contribute to the course,
but your available time allows you to participate only in the class assignments
(weekly quizzes and activities), not in project work. You are excited about
the material and play an active role in the course, perhaps by providing
feedback and mentoring other students, just as Adventurers and Tourists
can do at any time. We need the contributions of everyone in the community!
Tourists. You have signed up for the class, love it, want to take it, but because of other commitments in life, you cannot commit to the course all the time. This is fine! As a Tourist, you come and go to the course platform, watch some of the videos now and then, participate in some activities here and there, and do your best to stick with the class from the beginning to the end , trying to get as much as you can out of it. Maybe ...you will have more time to commit to the class in future offerings!
Has this course been taught before?
Yes, in a classroom setting. In converting this material into a MOOC format,
we are conducting a grand experiment - and one in which we invite you to
Will there be exams? What will I have to turn in?
Some of the modules will contain quizzes to assess skill development and
mastery. Other modules will require other kinds of output (e.g., idea journals,
prototypes) to demonstrate progress.
How will the course be graded?
Course participants will submit ideas, products, and exercises for peer
review. The peer review process is an essential component of the class,
as it exposes students to creative diversity from the feedback they receive
and inspiration from other projects they review. All participants who complete
the specified number of assignments with quality deemed appropriate will
receive a statement of accomplishment documenting successful course
Will the course be challenging? Will it be fun?
Yes. Contrary to popular belief, creativity is something that we can study
pretty rigorously, and that’s a good thing. Besides, as other people have
probably been telling you all your life - you get out of learning what
you put into it. But there will also be ample opportunities to have fun
in this course, so you can expect to enjoy it as well!
Will I be expected to produce something creative? What if I fail?
Yes - and we will guide you there. The creative “something” you produce
will align with your own unique brand of creativity, whether you are a
person who thinks creatively through careful attention to detail or a person
who prefers to break through barriers for innovative results. Either way,
failure is part of the process; your success will be a function of what
you learn from each failure.
Time-frame: 8 weeks, starting in September 2013
Week 1: Creative Identity
The Importance of Failure
Establishing and Building Character
Week 2: Idea Generation
Week 3: Idea Evaluation
Idea Evaluation Methods
Critical Problem Solving Techniques
Establishing What to do and How to do it
Week 4: Building a Creative Team
Creative Diversity Application
Team Formation in Organizations
Week 5: Inspiration and Research
Receiving advice and feedback
Finding out what others have done
Week 6: Creativity Metrics
8th Muda: Measuring Latent Creativity
Level and Style Metrics
Lag versus Lead Metrics
Week 7: Experiment Planning and Prototyping
Problem Solving Methods
Intelligent Fast Failure and Experimentation
Taking Full Ownership Creative Project
Week 8: CIC Synthesis and Reflection
CLICK: Creating Leadership through Ideas resulting in Change and Knowledge
This course will employ both traditional and nontraditional methods of online teaching, with a focus on experiential learning. Each module will consist of videos to showcase new concepts and introduce case studies with optional creative exercises that encourage the learner to go down unexpected paths to critical moments of understanding. Interactive discussions with course professors on discussion forums and video chats and reflective writing pieces will stimulate students to look within themselves to perceive changes occurring in their lives.
By definition, this course also needs to live up to its name by being creative, innovative, and inviting change while it is in progress. In the spirit of co-creation, we will be open to new perspectives about these topics and will incorporate them as the course evolves. From week to week, we will discuss insights into the learning process from participant submissions and feedback, and we will integrate these insights into the course.
Although many of the class materials will be provided online, students who want to expand their knowledge beyond the materials provided can find further coverage of the course topics in various recommended readings, which we will include (among others):