Creativity: Methods to Design Better Products and Services

100% booked
Beginner

How this course will help your career

What You Will Learn

  • How to carry out ideation sessions, from first idea to developed concept by using hands-on ideation methods, techniques and tools
  • How to plan and time-manage creative projects to guarantee successful outcomes
  • How to use divergent ideation methods to break out of habitual thinking and generate innovative and useful ideas
  • How to use convergent ideation methods to develop your ideas further and solve creative problems through analytical thinking
  • How to make space for creativity so the ideas come when you need them
  • How to build a creative team environment

The overall goal of this course is to help you design better products, services and experiences by helping you and your team develop innovative and useful solutions. You’ll learn a human-focused, creative design process.

We’re going to show you what creativity is as well as a wealth of ideation methods―both for generating new ideas and for developing your ideas further. You’ll learn skills and step-by-step methods you can use throughout the entire creative process. We’ll supply you with lots of templates and guides so by the end of the course you’ll have lots of hands-on methods you can use for your and your team’s ideation sessions. You’re also going to learn how to plan and time-manage a creative process effectively.

Most of us need to be creative in our work regardless of if we design user interfaces, write content for a website, work out appropriate workflows for an organization or program new algorithms for system backend. However, we all get those times when the creative step, which we so desperately need, simply does not come. That can seem scary—but trust us when we say that anyone can learn how to be creative­ on demand. This course will teach you ways to break the impasse of the empty page. We'll teach you methods which will help you find novel and useful solutions to a particular problem, be it in interaction design, graphics, code or something completely different. It’s not a magic creativity machine, but when you learn to put yourself in this creative mental state, new and exciting things will happen.

In the “Build Your Portfolio: Ideation Project”, you’ll find a series of practical exercises which together form a complete ideation project so you can get your hands dirty right away. If you want to complete these optional exercises, you will get hands-on experience with the methods you learn and in the process you’ll create a case study for your portfolio which you can show your future employer or freelance customers.

Your instructor is Alan Dix. He’s a creativity expert, professor and co-author of the most popular and impactful textbook in the field of Human-Computer Interaction. Alan has worked with creativity for the last 30+ years, and he’ll teach you his favorite techniques as well as show you how to make room for creativity in your everyday work and life.

You earn a verifiable and industry-trusted Course Certificate once you’ve completed the course. You can highlight it on your resume, your LinkedIn profile or your website.

Gain an industry-trusted UX Course Certificate

You earn a verifiable and industry-trusted Course Certificate once you complete the course. You can highlight them on your resume, CV, LinkedIn profile or your website.

Course Certificate

Our courses and Course Certificates are trusted by these industry leaders, who have taken up company memberships with the IDF:

Centure, Adobe, GE, IBM, Philips and SAP

Is this course right for you?

This is a beginner-level course suitable for anyone who wants to unleash their creativity by mastering the powerful creativity techniques and tools. If you’re already seasoned at ideation, the tools and techniques will imbue your ideation sessions and your everyday creative practice with new energy. This course is particularly valuable for:

  • UX, UI and graphic designers interested in gaining a new creative approach to solving problems and generating solutions that work
  • Project managers who want to enable their team to excel at generating innovative solutions
  • Stakeholders who are keen to get involved in and manage the creative process of developing a new product or service
  • Software engineers interested in playing a part in idea generation and the design process
  • Entrepreneurs looking to develop innovative products that fit the market and users’ lives
  • Anyone who is interested in a creative problem-solving approach that can be applied to all types of problems

Learn and work with a global community of designers

When you take part in this course, you’ll join a global community and work together to improve your skills and career opportunities. Connect with helpful peers and make friends with like-minded individuals as you push deeper into the exciting and booming industry of creativity and design. You will have the opportunity to share ideas, learn from your fellow course participants and enjoy the social aspects afforded by our open and friendly forum.

Lessons in this course

  • Lessons become available at a schedule of one lesson per week.
  • Lessons remain open for you forever and have no deadlines.
  • There is no time limit to finish a course.
  • You have permanent access to your course material, answers, and classmates for the entire duration of your membership.
  • Estimated time to complete: 10 hours 10 mins spread over 5 weeks.

Lesson 0: Welcome and Introduction

To be scheduled. Estimated time to complete: 38 mins.

  • 0.1: Welcome and Introduction (11 mins)
  • 0.2: Build Your Portfolio: Ideation Project (3 mins)
  • 0.3: Let our community help you (1 min)
  • 0.4: How to earn your Course Certificate (4 mins)
  • 0.5: Expand your network and grow your skills in our online forums (5 mins)
  • 0.6: Meet and learn from design professionals in your area (1 min)
  • 0.7: Gain Timeless Knowledge Through IDF Courses (10 mins)
  • 0.8: Mandatory lessons vs. Optional lessons (2 mins)
  • 0.9: A mix between video-based and text-based lesson content (2 mins)

Lesson 1: What is Creativity and How do you Think Outside of the Box with Divergent Thinking?

To be scheduled. Estimated time to complete: 2 hours 1 min.

  • 1.1: Welcome and Introduction (1 min)
  • 1.2: Understand the Various Types of Creativity (17 mins)
  • 1.3: What are the Stages of Creativity? (4 mins)
  • 1.4: What is A Wicked Problem and How Can You Solve It? (24 mins)
  • 1.5: How to Think Outside the Box (7 mins)
  • 1.6: Ideation Methods: Bad Ideas (13 mins)
  • 1.7: Exercise: Come Up with a Great Bad Idea (13 mins)
  • 1.8: What’s Good About Bad Ideas? (15 mins)
  • 1.9: How to Think and Work Divergently – 4 Ideation Methods (18 mins)
  • 1.10: Congratulations and Recap – Plus a Fun Challenge (10 mins)

Lesson 2: Convergence: How to Uncover Knowledge and Be Creative Through Analytical Thinking

To be scheduled. Estimated time to complete: 2 hours 39 mins.

  • 2.1: Welcome and Introduction (3 mins)
  • 2.2: Convergence – How to Be Creative Through Analytical Thinking (16 mins)
  • 2.3: How to Use Your Existing Knowledge to Come Up with New Ideas (21 mins)
  • 2.4: Externalization: 4 Ways and Methods to Uncover Your Tacit Knowledge (19 mins)
  • 2.5: Ideation Method: Three-way Comparisons (11 mins)
  • 2.6: Ideation Method: More Specific and More General (17 mins)
  • 2.7: Ideation Method: Embrace Opposites (6 mins)
  • 2.8: Ideation Method: Multiple Classifications (27 mins)
  • 2.9: TAPT: Teasing Apart, Piecing Together (13 mins)
  • 2.10: Exercise: Use the TAPT Method to Take a Walk with a Friend—Online (19 mins)
  • 2.11: Congratulations and Recap (6 mins)

Lesson 3: How to Nurture Your Own Creativity and Build a Creative Team Environment

To be scheduled. Estimated time to complete: 2 hours 18 mins.

  • 3.1: Welcome and Introduction (2 mins)
  • 3.2: How to Supercharge Yourself to Get More Creative (19 mins)
  • 3.3: Wake Up and Take a Shower with Alan Dix – and Learn to Nurture Your Creative Ideas (22 mins)
  • 3.4: How to Capture Your Ideas Before They Disappear (7 mins)
  • 3.5: How to overcome Fixation and Bias in Creative Problem Solving (28 mins)
  • 3.6: 3 Personal Habits That Will Foster Your Creativity (13 mins)
  • 3.7: 14 Barriers to Creativity and Ideation in Your Team – and How to Overcome Them (11 mins)
  • 3.8: How to Create an Environment That Nurtures Creativity (13 mins)
  • 3.9: Try Different Roles to Solve Your Problems – Edward de Bono’s Six Thinking Hats (11 mins)
  • 3.10: Congratulations and Recap – Plus a Fun Challenge (12 mins)

Lesson 4: How to Plan and Time-Manage Creative Projects to Guarantee Successful Outcomes

To be scheduled. Estimated time to complete: 2 hours 16 mins.

  • 4.1: Welcome and Introduction (3 mins)
  • 4.2: Can You Time-Manage Creativity? (6 mins)
  • 4.3: How to Plan for Creativity: Effective Time-Management Plans for Your Large-Scale Creative Projects (20 mins)
  • 4.4: Optional Exercise to Help You Start Managing A Creative Project: Plan Your Creative Tasks (7 mins)
  • 4.5: How to Harness the Power of To-Do Lists in Your Short-Term Time-Management Plans (16 mins)
  • 4.6: How to Use Busywork to Enable Your Creativity in Your Daily Planning (14 mins)
  • 4.7: Plan for Incubation Time: When Is Doing Nothing the Best Thing to Do? (10 mins)
  • 4.8: 5 Best Practices: What to do When You Get Stuck in Executing Your Creative Work Plan (23 mins)
  • 4.9: What is the Best Plan for Creativity? (3 mins)
  • 4.10: Do You Want to Incorporate Your Creative Methods Into an Entirely Human-centered Design Process? (3 mins)
  • 4.11: Build your Portfolio Project: Divergent Ideation (11 mins)
  • 4.12: Build your Portfolio Project: Convergent Ideation (12 mins)
  • 4.13: Discuss and Learn with Your Fellow Course-Takers (5 mins)
  • 4.14: Congratulations and Recap (3 mins)

Lesson 5: Course Certificate, Final Networking, and Course Wrap-up

To be scheduled. Estimated time to complete: 18 mins.

  • 5.1: Course Evaluation (1 min)
  • 5.2: 3 Reasons Why You Should Have a UX Design Portfolio (6 mins)
  • 5.3: 3 Reasons Why You Should Have a UX Design Portfolio (6 mins)
  • 5.4: Wrap-up and Where to Go From Here (6 mins)

How to advance your career with IDF courses

  1. Attend lessons at your own pace

    Each week throughout the course, you get access to a new lesson, but you can move through the lessons at your own pace. This means you can learn before you leave for work, or in between breaks — in as little as 15 minutes per day.

  2. Network online and offline

    Network with your fellow course-takers online, through discussion forums inside lessons. You can also connect with your peers offline via IDF’s Local Groups. Local Groups connect you with other designers around your city who share the same passion in UX design as you.

  3. Advance your career

    Get a verifiable and industry-trusted Course Certificate once you’ve scored at least 70% on a course. Highlight your Course Certificates on your résumé, your LinkedIn profile, or your website to showcase your newly mastered skills.

Start advancing your career now

Become a member to take “Creativity: Methods to Design Better Products and Services”. Take any other IDF UX courses at no additional cost. Take a concrete step forward in your career path today.

Frequently asked questions

I missed the enrollment date and now the course is closed. Will I have any opportunity to take the course in the future?

Don't worry if you missed the course. We will re-run it shortly. One of the reasons we continually open and close courses is to be able to control the classroom size.

Networking is a large part of our value proposition, so we want just the right number of people inside the courses. That is also why we display the "XX % percent booked" on our course icons.

We’ll re-schedule the course and make it available for sign-up on https://www.interaction-design.org/courses in only about a week (or perhaps a little bit longer). The actual start date of the course will be a few weeks after sign-ups begin too. We’ve found that this is the best way to maximize flexibility and convenience for everyone, especially you as you put your course program together.

Can I take more than one course at a time?
Yes, you can take as many courses as you would like. For example, if there are 30 active courses, you can enroll in all 30 courses at the same time and move from one to the other as you please.

There are no further charges once you have paid for your membership.

Please note: If you have a student membership, you can take a maximum of two courses at the same time. As a student, you can thus still take as many courses as you would like – free of extra charges – just as long as you finish them (or drop them) so that you don’t have more than three ongoing courses at the same time. Please note that if you drop a course, progress is not transferable between cycles. So, you'll have to redo the lessons and answers you already completed in the current cycle. 
Do I have to be online at an exact time to study?

No. You can set your own study schedule. There are no "live sessions" or "webinars" since our members are from all timezones around the world. We are a truly global community – with members in every single corner of the world.

Thus, once you are enrolled, you can take all the time you want to complete a given course. Every "classroom" in each course will never close, so you’ll have permanent access to your classmates and your course material (as well as your own answers).

Will I receive a Course Certificate?

Yes. Every time you complete a course, you get an industry-recognized Course Certificate. There is no limit to how many Course Certificates you can earn during your membership. You will also receive a 3-step guide on how to include your Course Certificate on LinkedIn and in your résumé/CV.

You can see an example of a Course Certificate at the bottom of the Course Catalogue.

I have answered questions in a lesson; when will they be marked/graded?
We do the marking/grading in so-called "sprints," where we sit down and do all the marking/grading in one go. Your answers will be graded approximately two weeks after you submit your work. 
We do this because it is much more efficient than doing one little step every day. It's part of our lean/agile work philosophy, and that approach to efficiency is one of the factors that keeps our membership prices so incredibly low.
We are doing it to save you money and as part of our mission to lower the cost of high-quality design education.
I have updated my name, but my course certificate is not updated — how can I change it?
Once you update your name, the certificate will be updated automatically in the next 48 hours. 
I have started the course/lesson later than the specified date, are my answers still going to be marked?

We will be marking answers for as long as there are active members. Therefore, even if you are the only person taking a lesson at that particular time, your answers will still be marked.

How are courses graded?

Open-ended questions are graded by our experts and course instructors - not by machines.

That's one of the reasons why our Course Certificates are credible and recognized by industry leaders.

I started a course after the official start date; for how long will I have access to the course materials?

Regardless of when you have enrolled on a course, you will have access to the course materials for the entire duration of your membership. So, if you pay for a one-year membership, you will have access for one year, renewing your membership for a second year means you will have access for two years, and so on.

New lessons are starting before I have had the chance to complete all aspects of the previous lesson(s); am I going to be locked out of these unfinished lessons?

No, you will not be locked out of any lesson or course. You will have access to all course materials throughout your membership, so there is no pressure to keep at the same pace as the specified lesson release dates.

All we recommend is that you try to stick to the same schedule as other participants. The reason is they may have moved on to other lessons, thereby meaning you could miss out on the social aspects of the course(s). However, we anticipate that there will be a constant flow of participants working through different lessons and courses, so overall you are unlikely to miss out. We will also be running all courses again — so there really is no rush.

Are course certificates awarded on a specific date?

No; you can generate your certificate as soon as you attain at least 70% of the total course points.

When will I receive my Course Certificate?

Course certificates will be given to participants when they have scored more than 70% or more of the total course points. For example, if a course contains ten lessons each with ten questions, you will receive a course certificate when the instructor has awarded you at least 70 points (70% of the total course points).

There is no specified time that certificates will be awarded — instead, they are given to participants as and when they have answered all questions, even if this is long after the official end date.

How do I add my Course Certificate to my LinkedIn profile?

Below is a step-by-step guide on how to add your IDF course(s) to your LinkedIn profile:

  1. Log in to your LinkedIn account, then go to your profile.
  2. On the right, in the Add profile section dropdown, choose Background and then select the + next to Licenses & Certifications.

  3. In the following fields add:
    • Name – Course name
    • Issuing organization – The Interaction Design Foundation
    • Check the field “This credential does not expire”
    • Issue date - Input the date written on your certificate (e.g., May 2019)
    • Credential ID – Your membership ID number (it's written on your certificate)
    • Credential URL: Input the certificate URL provided on your course page

  4. Click on the save button.

Congratulate yourself!
You’ve made a great accomplishment by earning your course certificate, and now the world knows about it!

How do I add the IDF Membership Certificate to my LinkedIn Profile?

Below is a step-by-step guide on how to add your IDF membership certificate to your LinkedIn profile:

  1. Log in to your LinkedIn account, then go to your profile.
  2. On the right, in the Add profile section dropdown, choose Background and then select the + next to Licenses & Certifications.

  3. In the following fields add:
    • Name – Membership Certificate
    • Issuing organization – The Interaction Design Foundation
    • Check the field “This credential does not expire”
    • Issue date - Input the date when you joined our community (e.g., May 2019)
    • Credential ID – Your membership ID number (it's written on your certificate)
    • Credential URL: Input the certificate URL provided on your profile page
  4. Click on the save button.

It is as simple as that. Now, anyone who visits your profile can see your certificate!

How much will I have to pay for the courses?

As a member, you can take as many courses as you want with no additional costs. This means you only have to pay our membership fee to take an unlimited number of courses. There will be no further charges on top of the membership fee, no matter how many courses you decide to take.

Do you provide mostly beginners' or more advanced courses?

We provide courses for all levels of mastery and accross the full spectrum. If you’re new to design, you can start from our beginner courses and progress all the way up to our advanced ones. If you’re an established designer, on the other hand, you will find some of our lower-level courses provide a good refresher—and the advanced ones, a bit of a challenge.

How long does it take to complete a course?

Once enrolled in a course, you will gain access to a new lesson each week, which you are free to complete without any deadlines and no end date, either.