Designing for Creative Learning Environments: New chapter

by | Thursday, November 09, 2023

In 2017, Carmen Richardson and I co-authored a paper (Richardson & Mishra, 2017) introducing SCALE: Support of Creativity in Learning Environment: SCALE, a tool created to evaluate how well educational settings foster student creativity. Unlike formal evaluation tools, SCALE is concise and informal, focusing on collecting data on educational practices rather than judging teacher performance. It assesses three key dimensions: learner involvement, the physical setting, and the overall atmosphere conducive to learning.

More recently, I had a chance to revisit the instrument as part of some conversations with Danah Henriksen and Lauren Woo for a paper we were writing titled “Designing for Creative Learning Environments: Putting Pedagogical Principles into Action.” This article is part of a handbook titled “Foundations of Learning and Instructional Design Technology: Historical Roots & Current Trends.” It is published by EdTechBooks, a wonderful open-source publishing platform that makes quality academic texts freely accessible. I have written for them previously once for the previous edition of the handbook and once for EDTECHNICA. Incidentally the SCALE instrument has been used by others in their research (something I document here). Citation and link to the new article below:

Henriksen, D., Woo, L., & Mishra, P. (2023). Designing for Creative Learning Environments: Putting Pedagogical Principles into Action. In  R. E. West &  H. Leary (Eds.), Foundations of Learning and Instructional Design Technology: Historical Roots & Current Trends. EdTech Books. https://edtechbooks.org/foundations_of_learn/creativity

In this chapter, we discuss fundamental principles that define a creative learning environment and how these can be integrated into pedagogical design. We propose the use of the SCALE (Support for Creativity in a Learning Environment) instrument (Richardson & Mishra, 2018) as a frame for understanding and evaluating the characteristics of creative learning environments. Using the SCALE’s constructs—characteristics of the environment, learning climate, and learner engagement—as benchmarks, we consider how these offer criteria to build into the design of learning environments. This chapter discusses applications of these principles across various environments, including online and blended spaces, acknowledging that different environments present distinctive affordances, opportunities, constraints, and possibilities. Our implications take a future-oriented perspective on online creative learning environment design in both research and practice.

A few randomly selected blog posts…

Waking up in DC

I am in Washington DC for a couple of days with two sets of somewhat overlapping meetings. The first is the National Technology Leadership Summit (NTLS) and the second is a meeting of the AACTE committee on Innovation & Technology. NTLS brings together national...

Ambigrams & Math: In one embeddable ebook

Over the past two years Gaurav Bhatnagar and I have written five columns for the Math education journal At Right Angles  on the topics of mathematics and visual wordplay, specifically Ambigrams. In this five articles we have explored everything from symmetry to...

TPACK & Microsoft’s Teacher Education Initiative

Over the past year or so I have been part of an exciting project conducted as part of Microsoft's Partner's in Learning project - specifically the team focusing on Higher Education. This is a project initiated by Microsoft "aimed at helping educators and students...

Evaluating creative learning environments: New instrument

Evaluating creative learning environments: New instrument

Note: There is a more recent, May 2023 post (Scaling up the SCALE instrument) that offers an update on other researchers who have utilized the instrument for their own research. Creativity is a key educational goal and essential 21st century skill. That said, much of...

Off to Netherlands

I will be out of the country for most of next week. I will have access to email (except when I am in-flight/traveling) though I may not be able to reply as to emails as promptly as I would like. For those who care I will be in Twente University, in the Netherlands,...

The beauty of the web: Shape of the earth

While searching for information for my previous posting on using eclipses to see, I came across an interesting paper that provided yet another way of figuring out the shape of the Earth. Lynch, D.K. (2005). Turbulent ship wakes: further evidence that the Earth is...

New ambigram, Algebra

I have been thinking about the relationship between ambigrams and mathematics - instigated in no small part by an email conversation with Gaurav Bhatnagar. That inspired me to create ambigrams of words that are related to mathematics. There are a few ideas percolating...

What is the value of a theoretical framework?

One question that all doctoral students dread (and rightfully so) is "What is your theoretical framework?" Why, they wonder (silently), why do we need a framework? This question popped up recently in, of all places, Facebook. Pilar Quezzaire, a graduate of our MAET...

Distributed creativity

Re-Public: re•imagining democracy, an online journal focusing on innovative developments in contemporary political theory and practice, has a special issue devoted to Distributed Creativity and Design. This may be a useful resource for my Learning technology by design...

0 Comments

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *