• University of Leeds

Innovation: the World's Greatest

Understand what innovation means and consider the history and developments of innovations that are important in our daily lives.

34,454 enrolled on this course

Innovation: the World's Greatest

This course considers innovations throughout history identifying that very few innovative ideas are new; the vast majority take something that is already working and improve it, be it a product, service or process.

You’ll consider the development of an innovation that you are particularly interested in, and, through a short project, produce and share with other learners your interpretation of its history.

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Skip to 0 minutes and 11 seconds Innovation is what moves us forward, from the wheel to the internet and everything in between. This course focuses on important innovations throughout history. We start by exploring different types of innovation. You’ll see that very few innovative ideas can be thought of as completely new. The vast majority take something that is already working, improve upon it, or apply it in a new way. Through videos, activities, and quizzes, this course will look at some of the different types of innovation that exist. And you will discuss with your fellow learners which innovations you rate as being the world’s greatest and why.

Skip to 0 minutes and 46 seconds Along the way, you’ll have plenty of opportunity to interact with learners from around the world, giving you new perspectives on the topic. Sign up now to The World’s Greatest Innovations.

What topics will you cover?

  • What is innovation? Interpretation in business and within a wider context
  • Determining types of innovation: products, processes, services
  • Levels of innovation: incremental, radical, disruptive
  • Innovation in action: the challenges of an independent, serial innovator
  • The solar fridge: finding innovative solutions to challenges in Africa

When would you like to start?

Start straight away and learn at your own pace. If the course hasn’t started yet you’ll see the future date listed below.

  • Available now

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Discuss great innovations from history and share ideas with fellow learners.
  • Compare your ideas with those of educators and students from the University of Leeds.
  • Explore what the term ‘innovation’ means and reflect on how it is interpreted in business and in wider contexts.
  • Contribute to the discussion regarding the different types of innovation and think of examples of each.
  • Identify examples of the three levels of innovation: incremental, radical and disruptive.
  • Evaluate your chosen innovation in light of your understanding of the types and levels of innovation.
  • Research and report on the history and development of an innovation of your choice.
  • Record and report on the history of your chosen innovation.
  • Share and discuss your report on your chosen innovation with fellow learners.

Who is the course for?

This course is part of the Going to University collection which has been specifically designed for students at schools and colleges. They provide a taster of undergraduate study at the University of Leeds and help students to decide which subject to study at university.

Completion of the courses will also enhance students’ university applications.

The courses can also be used as a teachers’ classroom enrichment resource.

Courses in this collection are also great for people that want an introduction in the specific subjects discussed in each course.

Who will you learn with?

Hi, I’m a Senior Teaching Fellow at the Univesity of Leeds. My areas of interest are based around the subject of design. Key areas are innovation, creativity and employability.

Who developed the course?

University of Leeds

As one of the UK’s largest research-based universities, the University of Leeds is a member of the prestigious Russell Group and a centre of excellence for teaching.

Learning on FutureLearn

Your learning, your rules

  • Courses are split into weeks, activities, and steps, but you can complete them as quickly or slowly as you like
  • Learn through a mix of bite-sized videos, long- and short-form articles, audio, and practical activities
  • Stay motivated by using the Progress page to keep track of your step completion and assessment scores

Join a global classroom

  • Experience the power of social learning, and get inspired by an international network of learners
  • Share ideas with your peers and course educators on every step of the course
  • Join the conversation by reading, @ing, liking, bookmarking, and replying to comments from others

Map your progress

  • As you work through the course, use notifications and the Progress page to guide your learning
  • Whenever you’re ready, mark each step as complete, you’re in control
  • Complete 90% of course steps and all of the assessments to earn your certificate

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Available until 19 April 2021 at 23:59 (UTC). T&Cs apply.

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