When: Friday, January 8

Time: 10am CST

Length: 4 hours

Cost: $249

zu Design Thinking: Post-Secondary Edition takes the proven content of our Fundamentals course and focuses it on university and college challenges. COVID-19 has changed the world as we know it. Student recruitment and the student experience have been impacted beyond belief, and we're here to help.

This is your first introduction to the world of design thinking. It’s a jam-packed 4-hour walkthrough of the entire methodology that teaches effective tools for complex problem solving and delivering beautiful experiences for your users. Learn how design thinking can be directly applied to recruitment and the student experience, and take away tools that can be applied to any challenge you face as a post-secondary institution.

What is design thinking? 

It’s a practical approach to finding creative solutions to problems, inspired by traditional design methods, that you don’t have to be a designer to use or understand. More simply, design thinking is an approach to problem solving.

What you'll learn

  • The design thinking process
  • How to conduct user-centred research
  • New approaches to problem definition and innovation
  • The prototyping mindset
  • How to improve your student experience process
  • Where and when to apply design thinking
Course Outline

Introductions & design thinking background

zu's Design Thinking Process

  • Empathize: User engagement & research methods
    • Personas
    • Customer Journey Mapping
  • Define: Problem identification
    • ‘How Might We’ statements
  • Ideate: Brainstorming and idea generation frameworks
    • Crazy 8s sketching
  • Prototype: Rapid exploration techniques
    • ‘Toilet Marketing’ exercise
  • Test: Getting feedback
    • User testing

Q & A session

Upon completion, participants receive course material summaries and an official certificate of completion that you can show off to your network. 

Participants also have an opportunity to book a 1-1 session with the instructor to answer any burning questions and discuss personal design thinking applications. 

  • Laptop or desktop with a good internet connection
  • Webcam
  • Updated web browser
  • Smartphone or camera
  • Pen, sharpie and 8.5x11 or 11x17 paper
  • Comfy chair, beanbag or hammock
Who should attend?
  • Student recruitment professionals
  • Student advisors
  • International student professionals
  • Department heads
  • Professors and sessional lecturers looking to understand design thinking and apply it to classroom challenges
  • Access and equity service professionals
  • Student union members
  • Anyone on campus who faces challenges and wants to discover a new way to innovate
Strategy Director, Partner



Albert is zu’s resident storyteller, DJ, and camp counsellor. A regarded thought leader on Design Thinking and Digital Strategy, Albert regularly facilitates workshops and kicks off project strategy sessions. An equally passionate speaker, Albert is committed to proving that your brand is only as good as your experience.

The Instructor

All zu Academy instructors are seasoned practitioners who are proponents of human-centred design and passionate about building better solutions and experiences. They are equally excited to share what they learn in the field with all academy participants.

About zu

zu is a design and strategy consultancy focused on building digital solutions. We have applied our human-centred approach to transformational client projects for the last 25 years. zu Academy is the learning extension of zu, aimed at helping organizations build knowledge and capacity within their teams to design and develop better products and services for their users.


zu’s intro to design thinking was an excellent workshop for my team. It had us evaluating information in different ways, reconsidering problems and solutions and turning situations on their proverbial heads. 


In a time when “the norm” changes weekly, being able to look at things from a different angle and consider outcomes and user experience enhances one’s is adaptability – which is arguably one of the most valuable skills needed in the workforce at present.

        — Leigh-Ellen Keating
            Director, Brock International
            Brock University



Ready to expand your skill set?

Join us January 8 at 10am CST (noon EST; 9am PST) for this 4-hour, interactive online workshop. 

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