Essentials of Practical Design Thinking


Learn the foundations of design thinking to expand your creative problem-solving skills and generate innovative solutions. In this short, self-paced introductory course, you will gain a foundational understanding of the three primary stages of design thinking in three modules, each focused on a different stage: inspiration, ideation and iteration. Our curriculum, designed by UT Austin faculty, provides learners with a new framework for solving complex problems, using empathy and a human-centered approach.

Who Should Enroll: 
  • Early- to mid-career professionals across multiple industries and disciplines
  • Project and program managers
  • Executives seeking to increase their understanding of what their people do
  • Individuals exploring options to improve the efficiency of their business processes
Learning Outcomes: 
  • Determine effective questions for understanding the root cause of perceived challenges
  • Practice methods for framing, asking and answering effective questions
  • Recognize problems where gaining inspiration and empathy is particularly valuable
  • Apply methods for exploring and generating ideas
  • Identify situations where quickly generating a large number of ideas is especially helpful
  • Employ methods for prototyping, testing and iterating concept ideas
  • Recognize opportunities for advancing ideas into solutions
Continuing Education Hours: 
Continuing Education Units: .60 CEUs
Additional Information: 

Offered in collaboration with the School of Design and Creative Technology, College of Fine ArtsOffered in a convenient online self-paced format, you’ll have 60 days to complete your journey through the Essentials of Practical Design Thinking.

Program designer Dr. Julie Schell is the Assistant Vice Provost for Academic Technology at The University of Texas at Austin and teaches courses in design thinking, design pedagogy, design research and supervised teaching in design. Schell is the creator of Think Before You Design Think™️, a popular introductory human-centered design course she first launched at AT&T and has delivered at Fortune 500 companies, school districts and non-profit organizations throughout the United States. Her approach to design thinking pedagogy focuses on accentuating the intersections between design and learning.

For withdrawal, transfer and refund information, see Policy Code C.

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