What Do We Mean By Innovation?

Innovation in technology enhanced teaching is a relative term, defined in relation to your own practices, and those in your discipline and in the College. Your proposed project should involve solving problems and finding opportunities in teaching and learning that involve the use of technology.  

Signs that you are innovating

Your students

  • become creators and producers
  • are working on “ill-structured problems,” or messy, open-ended explorations that require discovering and evaluating multiple perspectives and resolving the problem through one of many possible solutions. 
  • blend critical thinking, knowledge about content, and technology skills in their work
  • learn foundational knowledge and skills in new ways
  • use technology for new approaches and insights

You, the instructor

  • use technology to develop a novel approach to an assignment
  • discover you need to reconceptualize the assignment, the process that your students will follow, and evaluation of student work
  • repurpose a technology that normally isn’t used in education
  • find new uses for technologies that are typically used in education


  • multimodal assignments (video and other media, web galleries)
  • text mining
  • gamification
  • digital mapping
  • social software
  • data visualization
  • networks
  • rethinking/reworking content, lectures, assignments and evaluation of student work

If you have questions, email cla-acadtech@umn.edu