Creativity in higher education curriculum: A qualitative case study of pedagogical processes and practices



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There is a distinct need for research that examines the ways in which institutions and instructors can foster creative thinking among higher education students. This qualitative case study analyzed how instructors in higher education conceptualized creativity in the context of teaching and learning, which pedagogical processes and practices fostered the creative capacities of students, and the ways faculty members were prepared and supported to teach for creativity. The findings have uncovered a lack of clarity in the ways in which creativity is understood in relation to teaching and learning and a lack of consistency in how creativity is incorporated in course design and delivery. Participants indicated there has been a lack of training and professional development opportunities related to effective pedagogical practices, particularly in regard to teaching for creativity.
Though literature that outlines creativity fostering traits and behaviors of teachers proliferates, research has failed to provide instructors with guidelines and tools to assist with course design and delivery. A lack of consistent training and professional guidance has necessitated instructors figure out for themselves how to best teach for creativity. In many cases, new instructors sought out books, websites, and workshops, scrambled to network with more seasoned faculty mentors and peers, and jumped right in to teaching without a solid foundation. Based on prior research and this study’s findings, opportunities for faculty training and development should include a mix of disciplinary and interdisciplinary focuses, as well as formal and informal methods.



Creativity, Higher education, Curriculum and instruction, Teaching