T410A Fostering Creativity and Innovation through Education: Applying Theory to Practice [Harvard Graduate School of Education]





The need to foster creativity and innovation has long been a priority in the educational, corporate, and political spheres. Today, with the proliferation of FabLabs, iLabs, 3-D printers, and “maker” spaces in schools and after-school programs, the push to develop curricular structures that support creativity and innovation is greater than ever before. Despite this need, there is a lack of clarity amongst educators and policymakers over what “creativity” and “innovation” even mean. Whether in STEM subjects or the arts, many educators enter their studios, classrooms, and lab spaces without a firm enough grasp on the scholarship that underpins creativity and innovation studies and a concrete sense of what teaching for creativity and innovation looks like. This course module will introduce students to an array of creativity and innovation theories to develop a deeper understanding of these concepts, grounded in scholarly literature. Concurrently, students will be presented with case studies of learning environments that hold creativity and/or innovation as core outcomes. A variety of pedagogical approaches (small group discussion, hands-on work with tactile materials, the use of digital media) will be employed during class sessions wherein students will discuss both the theories and learning environments under review. As a final project, students will establish their own definitions of creativity and innovation while also developing a sketch for a curriculum (or a series of lesson plans) that promotes their articulation of creativity and innovation in the content areas of their choice.