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Taught a workshop on effective easy-to-use techniques for creative problem-solving

Yesterday, I hosted a workshop as part of MIT Virtual Orientation 2020. My co-host was Ophelia Zhu, a student from MIT Dept. of Urban Studies and Planning. We had about 40 participants take part, all first-year students. The workshop itself was part of my recruitment efforts for SP.248, a first-year course on creative problem-solving that I will be teaching this coming fall.

Participants practiced two quick and effective techniques for solving design problems: 5W technique for creating a succinct challenge statement, and a SNAP Method exercise for generating original ideas by defying implicit assumptions.

The challenge we tackled was a pertinent one: due to campus closing or only partially opening, many undergraduate students are attending online lessons via Zoom or a similar platform. This medium bears many difficulties for communication, instruction, and learning.

Participants generated about 40 ideas for solving the challenge.