Introduction: why “defence kit”?
This site is all about legitimising creativity and design thinking in the practice of learning design.
One of its basic assumptions is that creativity is not highly valued in learning design processes, or in learning designers. There are increasing pressures on learning designers to prioritise efficiency and cost, rather than effectiveness and benefit.
This brief “kit” is intended as a starting point for learning designers who feel that they need to be more creative. Of course, you can’t learn how to change your working practice, your organisation or yourself from a few pages of text. (You knew that already).
But hopefully it will gain your interest, and give you some signposts about where to go next, either on this site or elsewhere.
It’s in four main parts:
- What creativity is. A lot of the problems surrounding creativity arise because the word itself is widely misunderstood and comes with confusing and unhelpful baggage. So the first section will clarify what creativity is, and is not.
- Why you need creativity. Much of the resistance to taking more creative approaches arises because many people believe that the complex problems learning designers face can be resolved through logic and analysis, rather than creativity; that “if we just think harder” we’ll find useful answers. So the second section puts the case for creativity as the only way to address these problems.
- When you need creativity. The role of the learning designer, and of creativity itself, varies depending on where you are in the design process. So the third section gives a brief account of this.
- How to defend your creative activity against common misunderstandings. The final section illustrates how some of the most common misunderstandings are expressed by others. It offers brief explanations that you can use in response to these misunderstandings.