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BY 4.0 license Open Access Published by De Gruyter Open Access December 31, 2019

Design Thinking in Education: Perspectives, Opportunities and Challenges

  • Stefanie Panke EMAIL logo
From the journal Open Education Studies


The article discusses design thinking as a process and mindset for collaboratively finding solutions for wicked problems in a variety of educational settings. Through a systematic literature review the article organizes case studies, reports, theoretical reflections, and other scholarly work to enhance our understanding of the purposes, contexts, benefits, limitations, affordances, constraints, effects and outcomes of design thinking in education. Specifically, the review pursues four questions: (1) What are the characteristics of design thinking that make it particularly fruitful for education? (2) How is design thinking applied in different educational settings? (3) What tools, techniques and methods are characteristic for design thinking? (4) What are the limitations or negative effects of design thinking? The goal of the article is to describe the current knowledge base to gain an improved understanding of the role of design thinking in education, to enhance research communication and discussion of best practice approaches and to chart immediate avenues for research and practice.


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Received: 2019-03-13
Accepted: 2019-12-23
Published Online: 2019-12-31

© 2019 Stefanie Panke, published by De Gruyter

This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 Public License.

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