Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) are a great way to learn more and practice your creative thinking skills with leading universities around the world. We found twelve FREE MOOCs offered across Coursera, Edx, and Future Learn. Below you will find the links to the MOOCs, along with their course descriptions from their websites.
1. Creative Thinking: Techniques and Tools for Success
- Imperial College London
- ~23 hours to complete
- In today’s ever-growing and changing world, being able to think creatively and innovatively are essential skills. It can sometimes be challenging to step back and reflect in an environment which is fast paced or when you are required to assimilate large amounts of information. Making sense of or communicating new ideas in an innovative and engaging way, approaching problems from fresh angles, and producing novel solutions are all traits which are highly sought after by employers.
2. Ignite Your Everyday Creativity
- SUNY Buffalo State
- ~24 hours to complete
- Creativity is an essential skill for the 21st Century that is innate in all people and can be nurtured. We constantly need new and better ideas for almost every aspect of our professional and personal lives. The goal of this course is to help you recognize, develop and act upon the creativity that you already possess. We will accomplish this using three methods: b aware, b inspired, and b creative.
3. Creativity, Innovation, and Change
- Penn State
- ~28 hours to complete
- What did we DO?
- We discovered creative uniqueness through Creative Diversity.
- We used Intelligent Fast Failure to build innovative skills.
- We applied CENTER principles to drive personal change.
- And we implemented value creation skills to initiate lasting change.
- University of Minnesota
- ~14 hours to complete
- This course deals directly with your ability for creativity which is a critical skill in any field. It focuses on divergent thinking, the ability to develop multiple ideas and concepts to solve problems. Through a series of creativity building exercises, short lectures, and readings, learners develop both an understanding of creativity and increase their own ability.
5. Boosting Creativity for Innovation
- HEC Paris
- ~18 hours to complete
- Successful contemporary business relies on the ability of all its employees to be creative. Creativity can be developed and refined, albeit with effort and practice. The first goal of this course is to provide a variety of experiences and activities with the aim of developing the creative abilities of each participant. A second goal is to understand the importance of creativity from a consumer perspective. Consumers are being offered more and more opportunities to customize their products and services, and are increasingly seeking to express their creativity through their purchasing choices. As entrepreneurs, we have the ability to shape the consumer environment in ways that help consumers enhance their own creative abilities, and develop a unique relationship with them as a result.
6. Design Thinking for Innovation
- University of Virginia
- ~6 hours to complete
- Today innovation is everyone’s business. Whether you are a manager in a global corporation, an entrepreneur starting up, in a government role, or a teacher in an elementary school, everyone is expected to get lean – to do better with less. And that is why we all need design thinking. At every level in every kind of organization, design thinking provides the tools you need to become an innovative thinker and uncover creative opportunities that are there – you’re just not seeing them yet.
7. Cracking the Creativity Code: Discovering Ideas
- Technion – Israel Institute of Technology
- ~14 hours to complete
- Skill at discovering new ideas, and delivering them, may be one of the most important practical job skills, in today’s and tomorrow’s job market. Creativity is an acquired skill, one that improves with practice. This course aims to empower individuals who believe they have lost their innate creativity, because they, their employers or teachers prefer the three R’s: replication, repetition, and rote, to innovation. We show how to re-ignite rusty creative powers.
- University of Colorado Bolder
- 21 hours to complete
- This course is for creative professionals who want to work more efficiently and at higher levels of both job satisfaction and success. As much as anything, this is a survival-skills class designed to help creative professionals take control of their careers. The assignments and exercises are intended to build a creative community in which students gain confidence and grow together.
9. Design Thinking and Creativity for Innovation
- The University of Queensland – Australia
- 10 weeks / 1-10 hours per week
- Innovation matters to everyone, including managers in small or large organizations, start-up entrepreneurs, those in government roles, or teachers. This course looks at how individuals and organizations use creativity and design thinking skills to identify and choose opportunities that enable innovation. Creative problem-solving skills are developed and enhanced through a range of real-world activities. An overview of design thinking tools is provided to help students understand design thinking as a problem-solving approach. Ideas developed through these processes are then applied to a customer discovery approach to understand their value in the marketplace.
10. Reinvent yourself: Unleash your creativity
- The University of Texas
- 28 weeks / 2-4 hours per week
- Leading companies look for innovative thinking in new hires and for career advancement. Yet only 1 in 4 of us feels truly creative. Time to reinvent yourself and unleash the creativity lying dormant in all of us. Dr. Roberta Ness, featured TED speaker, author, and one of America’s leading creative thinking innovators, will guide you through her exclusive 5-step program to being an effective innovator. Learn to break free from your usual thinking pattern and start generating creative solutions to life’s challenges. Sharpen your powers of observation, make surprising associations, expand your idea space, and even master how to think backwards. Hone your creative thinking skills by solving real-world problems from business and science.
11. Get Creative with People to Solve Problems
- University of Leeds
- 2 weeks / 2 hours per week
- Human-centred design is a creative approach to problem solving. It focuses on understanding the needs of the people who have a problem in order to design appropriate solutions. In this course you’ll learn about the five-stage process and have the opportunity to take part in practical activities to try each stage of the process. You’ll learn why this method of thinking is effective, how to use it, and which jobs use the process. You’ll also become familiar with how to collect the right information and data to prove a solution can work in the real world.
12. Getting Started with Agile and Design Thinking
- University of Virginia
- 4 weeks / 4 hours per week
- Despite everyone’s good intentions, hard work and solid ideas, too many projects end up creating unneeded, unusable, and unsellable products. But, it doesn’t have to be this way. Agile and design thinking offer a different and effective approach to product development, one that results in valuable solutions to meaningful problems. In this course, you’ll learn how to determine what’s valuable to a user early in the process, to frontload value, by focusing your team on testable narratives about the user and creating a strong shared perspective.
Did we miss one of your favorite creativity MOOCs on our list? Send us an email and let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org