Systematic Creativity Methods in Engineering Education: A Learning Styles Perspective

Madara Ogot and Gul E. Okudan
Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA 16802, USA
E-mail: madaraogot@psu.edu

Abstract:
The traditional approach to creativity (using methods such as brainstorming, C-sketch, morpho- logical charts, scamper, etc.) calls upon the designer to look inward for inspiration. TRIZ, on other hand, invites the designer to use a ready pool of knowledge for inspiration. TRIZ does not discount the use of the traditional approaches. On the contrary, TRIZ ensures that design teams use these traditional methods in a systematically directed manner by carrying out intelligent idea generation in areas where other people have solved a similar general design problem. The main focus of this paper is to look at systematic creativity methods, such as TRIZ, from a learning styles perspective. Three learning styles dominant in the engineering education literature are explored: MBTI, Kolb and Felder-Silverman. For each it was found that the tasks required of each of the TRIZ steps matches a broader range of engineering student learning styles, than the sole use of brainstorming.

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