Meaningful Design Thinking is a methodology for problem solving from a creative perspective. The purpose of this method is to harness the skills of professionals to find innovative solutions to people's needs. Design Thinking was raised by David Kelley in the late 1980s, who led the creation of the Institute of Design at Stanford. This concept was later developed by Tim Brown, Stanford professor and co-founder of the consulting firm IDEO. Design Thinking is a way of thinking and can be used in order to develop a new product, to solve a problem at a social, personal or business level, to improve products, etc. At the end, for anything that poses a challenge or problem, so it can be used in various disciplines: business, education... Likewise, working this method in education leads to help learners develop competencies such as cooperation, creativity and innovation, i.e.21st century skills. Therefore, it involves:

  • Training committed students capable of finding solutions in context. 
  • Encourage collaboration through brainstorming and active participation. It is important to note that brainstorming is a creativity technique used extensively and appropriate for this thought, in order to involving the students in their learning. 

The characteristics of Design Thinking are:

  • It is learner-centered, based on empathy and understanding of people's needs, interests and motivations.
  • Collaborative: focuses on everyone's point of view.
  • Optimistic, it allows anyone to generate change, regardless of the complexity of the problem and resources.
  • Empirical: allows to fail and learn from mistakes due to feedback and the creation of new ideas.

At the same time, Design Thinking proposes that any solution must combine three axes of interest:

1. Human, since it should be something desirable.
2. It must be viable.
3. Technological.

In this sense, this methodology is an iterative process based on five steps or stages, as follows:

1. Empathize: try to know the needs of the target audience and the environment to understand the users.

2. Define: create conclusions and build a point of view based on user needs and perceptions.

3. Ideate: imagine creative solutions.

4. Prototyping: building a representation of one or more ideas to show, i.e. "landing" the ideas in the real world.

5. Evaluate: analyze and reflect on the results obtained and, thus, evaluate the entire learning process.

Therefore, Design Thinking is a creative process which helps learners design meaningful solutions to students in order to learn by doing. BeChallenge has therefore opted for this methodology, since, through the combination of Challenge-Based Learning (CBL), Design Thinking and, in addition, Connectivism allows any school to work in a very simple and comfortable way a process of teaching innovation through the platform.

The objective of BeChallenge methodology is to encourage students with 21st century skills (an essential trait of Design Thinking) to help them become more capable for the changes and evolutions brought about by this technological society. For this reason, the characteristic methodology of BeChallenge methodology integrates the steps or stages of Design Thinking, since the challenges launched by the platform are accompanied by a video debate, in which students collaboratively solve challenges sponsored by companies or institutions. Likewise, the process involved in the methodology of the BeChallenge methodology is based on the fundamentals principles of Design Thinking:

1. Discovery: through the video-debate, students learn about the problems or needs of their environment and society.

2. Interpretation: students create and show their conclusions through the recording of a video.

3. Ideation: students begin the process of imagining creative solutions to the challenge.

4. Experimentation: present the solution.

5. Evolution: by means of the corresponding feedback (comments made to optimize the solutions) it is decided whether or not to improve the solution.

In this way, the close relationship between the learning platform BeChallenge methodology and the Design Thinking method is showed.


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 Universia España (2017, julio 11). Design Thinking para docentes: cómo formar estudiantes más creativos. Recuperado de

 EduCaixa. Un mundo de actividades educativas (s.f.). Introducir el Design Thinking en el aula. KitCaixa Jóvenes Emprendedores. Desafío Emprende. Recuperado de

 López Tomás, C. y León Carpio, A. (2014). Introducción práctica: Design Thinking para educadores. Recuperado de

 Design Thinking for Educators. Recuperado de

 Steinbeck, Reinhold (2011). El “design thinking” como estrategia de creatividad en la distancia. Comunicar, nº37, v. XIX, Revista Científica de Educomunicación; ISSN: 1134-3478; páginas 27-35. Recuperado de

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