Collaborative Creativity

for Social Innovation and Human- Centred Design


Master of Education - MEd Interdisciplinary (4 course program)




Four course topic delivered over Summer, Fall, and Winter terms


Graduate Program Administrator:
Brenda Tschanz

Academic Coordinator:
Dr. Robert Kelly

Program Overview

Collaborative creativity is an educational imperative in 21st century education as it is essential to equip educators and learners with the capacities to innovate to adapt to perpetual change and to affect positive perpetual change. Truly collaborative cultures enhance innovative potentials exponentially by enabling the free flow of ideas in truly trusting and caring, inventive environments. A central feature of this program is continual collaborative engagement in contextual creative problem solving through design thinking and design practice. This is supported against a backdrop of research into the fields of creativity, design, innovation and entrepreneurship.

Program Details

Courses in this program are offered fully online. Courses are held in both an asynchronous environment (D2L) and a synchronous (real-time) environment (Zoom) which allows instructors to virtually meet and talk with students and experience a live exchange of ideas, hear class presentations and do group work with access to a whiteboard. For additional information regarding online delivery, refer to the Online Delivery eLearn website.

The Collaborative Creativity for Social Innovation and Human-Centred Design program, with its combination of face to face courses in the summer followed by online courses in the fall and winter, is highly accessible for those from diverse geographic locations and diverse professional backgrounds wishing to engage in a truly collaborative, transformative experience. This program is for those wishing to become positive agents of change through the development of the capacities for innovation in a variety of real world applications through collaborative creativity and design practice.

The Collaborative Creativity for Social Innovation and Human-Centred Design program is designed for educators from early childhood to post-secondary levels, and professionals from across the discipline spectrum to develop comprehensive, design thinking and design practice tactics and strategies to affect positive, innovative change across a wide range of real world contexts. This is accomplished through the establishment of a collaborative culture for creativity that is carried throughout the program to support the design work of all participants. Each program participant will be engaging in a highly supportive and interactive online community of collaboration and creativity throughout the program to support the growth and development of their own work as well as the work of others in the cohort. Some of these design contexts include educational and social innovation, human-centred design and entrepreneurship as well as the personal professional practice of each participant.

A registration package will be sent to new students after they have been admitted. Registration for the summer term will be available in late winter. Fall and Winter registration opens in the spring. Your Graduate Program Administrator will send more information about registration to you.

Fee details are available through the University Calendar. An explanation of fees is available on the Faculty of Graduate Studies' website.

The University of Calgary offers multiple ways to meet the cost of your education. Please refer to the Awards, Scholarships and Bursaries page to learn more about options available to students. For additional information, please contact Student Financial Support.

Please refer to the MEd Interdisciplinary page for the latest Admission Requirements and Transcripts information.

Program Schedule & Course Descriptions

  • Program begins each July (summer term 1) 
  • Outlines are normally available 1-2 weeks prior to the start of term in D2L
  • 3 units per course

Term 1 - Summer

The Collaborative Culture of Creativity

This course focuses on establishing foundational understanding of the central concepts of creativity, collaboration and design thinking for innovation. Emphasis is on establishing a collaborative culture of trust, caring and idea generation and sharing through large group and small group design tasks. This collaborative culture is maintained throughout the program to support the creative design practice of each participant. This course marks the launch of a design initiative for an innovation relevant to the professional practice of each participant.

Registration info:
EDER 678.75

Term 1 - Summer

Human Centred Design, Social Innovation and Entrepreneurship

This course focuses on the theory and practice of human centred design, social innovation and entrepreneurship behind applying design thinking strategies and tactics for initiatives that benefit other people in the local, regional and global environments. Emphasis is also on the development of the entrepreneurial mindset to imagine new ways to solve problems and create value. This course marks the launch of a collaborative small group design initiative in the fields of human-centred design, social innovation and entrepreneurship.

Registration info:
EDER 678.45

Term 2 - Fall

Research in Creativity, Collaboration and Design Thinking

This course explores the foundational literature base and supplemental research resources in the fields of creativity and design. Participants will be engaging in an online community of inquiry to enhance the growth and development of research awareness as it applies to personal and peer research interests. This development is based on evidence of metacognitive growth and articulation of process documentation fortified with pertinent citation of research resources to enhance the depth of understanding of developing research contexts of ongoing design work.

Registration info:
EDER 678.03 L01 (73213)

Term 3 - Winter

Sustainable Collaborative Creativity in Professional Practice

This course focuses on the long-term development of sustainable cultures of collaborative creativity. Design thinking methods and creative design practice are applied to a wide range of components that encompass professional educational practice transcending disciplinary contexts. The design of organizational structures, assessment design, learning experience design and education of the professional culture are just some of the areas of exploration for sustainable implementation.

Registration info:
EDER 678.04 L01 (13014)

The giant lobster project

Students from the Summer 2019 offering of EDER 678.75 - the Collaborative Culture of Creativity - worked together to build a giant lobster for their class.

Collaborative Creativity & Design Thinking for Innovation: The Giant Lobster Project


Building a Whale

Building a whale is really an exercise in total teamwork. Learn more about collaborative creativity in the link below from the 2017 version of this program.

Watch Video

Have Questions? Connect with Us

Brenda Tschanz

Graduate Program Administrator

Brenda Tschanz

Robert Kelly

Academic Program Coordinator

Dr. Robert Kelly

Education Block

Meet our Academic Experts

Our academics are committed to developing new ideas and insights that address local, national and international challenges, while also nurturing new generations of visionary thinkers.