Today’s world has “turbo-speed changes created by technology” (Marquardt, Banks, Cauweiler, and Ng, 2018, p. 18). And with these turbo-speed changes come the constant need for learning and creativity. As conditions change, instructional designs that can be adapted to various learners and conditions become more prevalent than ever before. Hence, instructional designers have to “learn their way into the creation of something that does not yet exist” (p. 40).
Complex problems require complex solutions and complex solutions come with creative thinking. Michalko (2011) submitted that one cannot will himself or herself to change his or her thinking patterns no matter how inspired he or she is to do so. Hence, “creative thinkers get variation by conceptually combining dissimilar subjects, which changes their thinking patterns and provides them with a variety of alternatives and conjectures” (Michalko, 2011, p. 14).
Michalko’s (2014) Thinker Toys is an excellent resource that helps foster creativity. Actually, I was impressed with this resource and I decided to do a series of animations on Thinker Toys. Below is one of the animations that was created based on Michalko’s Thinker Toys Handbook.
In sum, it’s not enough for instructional designers to know learning theory. Instructional designers have to be creative thinkers and problem solvers because instruction is more than a product to be delivered and a set of instructional strategies to be used in a training exercise.
Marquardt, M. J., Banks, S., Cauweiler, P., & Ng, C. S. (2018). Optimizing the power of action learning: Real-time strategies for developing leaders, building teams and transforming organizations.
Michalko, M. (2011). Creative thinkering: Putting your imagination to work. Novato, Calif: New World Library.
Michalko, M. (2014). Thinkertoys: A handbook of creative-thinking techniques.