We recently welcomed 30 students from Singapore Polytechnic, one of Singapore’s leading higher education institutions to Macleay College. Singapore Polytechnic was the first educational institution in Singapore to introduce the Problem-based Learning approach for all its diploma programs. Problem-based Learning is the approach we employ here at Macleay. The purpose of the trip was to create an international partnership with Singapore Polytechnic and to introduce their students to Design Thinking and to our Entrepreneurship program. The workshop was facilitated by Dr. Jane Hession and Ronan Healy from the Business Faculty.

What is Design Thinking? Design Thinking is a methodology used by businesses and designers to solve problems for clients and consumers. The process of Design Thinking uses logic, imagination, intuition, empathy and research to explore possibilities and solve problems. Design Thinking is at the heart of many of the courses we teach here at Macleay.

The problem we put to the students during the workshop was: how might we create a happy learning environment for the children of Syria and Iraq in order for them to return to school?

While they were unable to interview the children of Iraq and Syria they were able to interview each other about what made them feel happy and safe in school. This process taught the students the importance of empathy, the centrepiece of the human-centred design process.


We asked Entrepreneurship Lecturer, Ronan Healy, why it’s important to learn Design Thinking.
At its core, Design Thinking is a way of solving problems. As the rate of technological change accelerates so too does the level of complexity (and problems!) it creates for industries, economies and society. As a student, learning Design Thinking makes you a valuable asset to any organisation that wishes to react to, and even anticipate, this disruption.”

Find out more about our Entrepreneurship course here.

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