Professional Diploma in Innovation Through Design Thinking

Transform your approach to problem solving and innovation.

February 8, 2024

11 weeks
(1 evening p/wk)

3 hours per week

Delivery mode


Industry Focused Diploma Programmes Taught Online Live

Gain an Industry Focused Professional Diploma in Innovation Through Design Thinking delivered online-live by subject matter experts without leaving your home. Access this industry focused course to gain skills to compete and advance in the modern workplace.

On successful graduation you will get a diploma certificate issued on a secure portal that you can share with employers and colleagues on LinkedIn.

What will I learn?

Today, design and innovation are everyone’s business. The contemporary status quo demands us to solve problems faster and innovate better, with less. This course will; explore the current debates surrounding the common buzz words of ‘Design Thinking’ and its association with sustainable, lean and agile innovation; scrutinise the application and impact of Design Thinking in contemporary systems and; empower actionable change by successfully understanding and engaging with the story of your community. Over the 11 weeks, this programme will challenge your current perceptions of design and innovation, equip you with a critical mindset and crucial storytelling skills and assess your ability to create an agile and proactive strategy to empower change in your personal and business lives.

You will:

  • Learn to think critically about the role of design within the systems of your business community
  • Understand the story of your business community and what problems they face
  • Define and adapt your business community’s shared identity of resilience and reinvention
  • Discover your own designerly voice and how to use this to craft compelling stories for innovation
  • Re-think, re-frame and apply a variety of Design Thinking techniques to catalyse innovation
  • Craft a Design Thinking Strategy for your business community
  • Clearly articulate your strategy for sustained innovation within your business community

Programme Curriculum

During your first class, you will explore the course content and format, including what you can expect from the programme and how it is assessed.

Learn the history and theory of design and a detailed look at futuristic thinking and design futures. An exploration of Design Thinking and Systems Thinking methodologies and a review of the current debates surrounding them.

  • Design thinking in context
  • Systems thinking & moral imagination 
  • Adaption & the future of design 

Exploring differrent methods of designerly thinking across a variety of disciplines to define 3 stages of storytelling: The Stories of Being, Doing and Becoming. 

  • Systematic marginalisation
  • Indigenous thinking: back to basics
  • Empoering the community narrative
  • Transformation design & design justice
  • The intersections of innovation

Through guided workshops, accurately define the impacts of a mock scenario and create a detailed brief for urgent, but patient, action. 

  • Design strategy
  • Recognise emerging problems
  • Forecasting affected segments
  • Identifying affected community members
  • Engaging affected community members
  • Creating the brief

An exploration of the use of auto-ethnography and autodidactic (self-taught) research to better understand your place within your community and engage with your audiences in creative and participatory ways.

  • The importance of the 'auto' prefix
  • Co-authoring change
  • Ownership of experiences
  • Informed consent
  • Empaphising with the here and now
  • Defining the status quo
  • Tips for blended working: Part 1

Learn why you need to critically engage with your community to evaluate new knowledge. Identiy how to engage community members in creating their own Conceptual Story Map (CSM).

  • Iterating for insights
  • Ideation wayfinding
  • Visualising and evaluating
  • Hermeneutic analysis
  • Tips for blended working: Part 2

An exploration of how to find and map patterns in the people, place and things of your community and to discern what to prioritise.
  • Parts of the greater whole
  • Mapping & clustering
  • Prioritising patterns
  • Hermeneutic analysis: Part 2
  • Tips for blended working: Part 3

Learn how to assertively frame the problems in new ways. Learn how to conduct analytical summaries and to do a comparative analysis of these summaries. 

  • Re-storying
  • Problem re-framing
  • Discovering new paths
  • The big story
  • Tips for blended working: Part 4

Risk taking, failing, and exploring both the good and bad that could occur through implementing your desired change.

  • Speculative design & design fictions
  • Visualising the timeline
  • Immersive prototyping
  • Triangulating feasibility
  • The tortoise wins the race
  • Tips for blended working: Part 5

Presenting your future vision, underline your concept's full potential and compel others to join you in taking the necessary actions to implement your ideas.

  • Communal to specialised
  • Presenting visions
  • Talk like ted
  • Tips for blended working: Part 6

An exploration of different configurations of modules 1-9 for different scenarios and question if Design Thinking finishes.
  • Stories of being, doing and becoming
  • What happens 'post' design
  • Longitudinal configurations
  • Tips for blended working: Part 7 

During your final class, the subject matter expert will summarise the key topics covered during the programme. The Assessment will be outlined in detail with plenty of opportunity to ask any clarifying questions. 

Why should I enrol?

At Learnful, we guide and mentor our students throughout their learning experience.

Despite there being an ever-growing focus on ‘Innovation’, ‘Design Thinking’ and ‘Sustainability’ across many sectors, few understand the true importance of these processes beyond their face value. As businesses and their communities continue to face significant challenges to the future of their models and practices, the need for urgent and sustained innovation has become stark and clear. As a result, new approaches to tackling this innovation dilemma are needed across all sectors.

The Professional Diploma in Innovation through Design Thinking is for teams and individuals who want to develop a clear strategy for tackling this crippling innovation dilemma. This course will re-think and re-frame Design Thinking, a proven systematic approach to encouraging innovation, to;

  • Understand your own story and how it connects to the story of your community-clients, staff, citizens, or students
  • Uncover hidden problems and re-shape your community’s shared identity of resilience and reinvention to tackle them
  • Develop a strategy to empower actionable, sustained change in your community through innovation

Design Thinking is one of the world’s most popular approaches to establishing dynamic, human-centred, goal-oriented innovation. Anyone responsible for driving innovation, growth and the customer experience should attend, including functional and cross-functional teams.


What job will this programme prepare me for?

This programme is designed for anyone who is already in, or is entering, a leadership role within their community, and will focus on understanding and changing the role of design within the systems of their community. This will be of interest for participants in various creative or design-oriented roles, customer experience, engineering, innovation, R&D or strategy backgrounds.
Learnful – Europe's In-Demand Skills Academy Education

All Programmes include

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Enjoy a personalised and supported virtual classroom learning experience

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Validated educational pedagogy with an industry-led syllabus

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Real-time industry respected content curated by experts

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Global leading online interactive learning platform

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Verified & Shareable Digital Cert featuring the knowledge and skills you gain

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Industry standard software ensuring your learning incorporates the newest features

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Finance options available

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Globally recognised, your qualification travels with you


For further details of the payment options available, see our finance page.

For employer sponsorship, simply fill out our employer sponsored form available on request from the Learnful team by emailing [email protected]

No prior experience/knowledge required.

All courses require proficiency in English, requirement of IELTS 6 or its equivalent. 

The Programme Subject Matter Expert will monitor progress throughout the programme using multiple choice scenarios to ensure that concepts are understood. An end of course formal written assignment, equating to 100% of the assessment marks,  must be passed to graduate.