June 14, 2009
June 14, 2009
June 17, 2009
Entrepreneurship & Engineering Innovation
14.76.1 - 14.76.11
A Novel Creativity and Innovation Course for Engineering Students Abstract
A new engineering entrepreneurship minor program was launched in the College of
Engineering in Fall 2008. The first course in this program focuses on Creativity and
Innovation. This course has been designed to introduce sophomore engineering students
to a variety of creativity and innovation concepts heretofore unfamiliar to them.
Differences between creativity and innovation are made clear and then in-class exercises
to allow the students to practice different problem solving techniques are used. Guest
speakers from various arts fields tell about how they use different creativity techniques to
develop their various art forms. Finally, over the 12 weeks of the course, the class is
divided into teams with the goal of developing a novel game or toy for kindergartners.
The goals of this course are to provide students with tools to provide the students with a
clear understanding of the difference between creativity and innovation, to
enhance their creative approach to problem solving, to improve their powers of
observation and nonlinear thinking, and how to better determine and understand
customers’ needs. Assessment of course work related to these goals and an evaluation of
how well the goals were met are presented in addition to the details of the course content.
Innovation and entrepreneurship have been the cornerstones of economic development in
the United States. Particularly the development of new automotive, communications,
computer, medical, and information technologies has spawned huge new industries.
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