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Practice And Learning: Brainstorming Divergent Thinking (Essay Sample)


With three articles
Tool Practice and Learning: One of the major goals of this course is the application of
the CPS process to various challenges that you encounter in your personal or
professional settings. To assist you in accomplishing those goals or dealing
effectively with challenges, you will need to use four divergent tools (one will be
brainstorming) and at least four convergent tools (one will be POINt). A key learning
report of your personal or professional application will be required. Use the Innovation
Station worksheets as the basis for your work. Key learnings report is due April 25.
Report will be graded on a point basis (50 points).
Use this aspect of the course to help you achieve effective action in your lives, not just
as an academic exercise.
Basic Individual Tool Practice
One of the major goals of this course is to apply CPS tools to various personal and professional
challenges. The purpose of this assignment is to gain basic mastery of the tools. This is an
individual assignment. Note that you will often have to identify different challenges to use for
different tools (although sometimes you can apply multiple tools for a single challenge). Other
times you may need to do some work prior to using a tool (for example, if you decide to use
the matrix, you will need five or so possible solutions you wish to evaluate; criteria will also
need to be identified and prepared for the matrix).
To assist you in accomplishing this assignment, you will need to use at least four divergent
tools (one will be brainstorming) and at least four convergent tools (one will be a POINt). A
key learning report of your personal or professional application will need to be submitted. An
outline is provided below. Report will be graded on a point basis (50 points).
Other tools in the tool card set may be tools we have not used in class. You are free to try them
out as well.
Overview: For your report, provide an overview paragraph describing the tools you used and a
description of your challenges.
Each Tool: Describe the type of tool (Divergent or Convergent), how it works, why it was
chosen, and provide evidence tool application (for example, a short description in the body of
the paper and scanned Brainwriting sheets in the Appendix OR a more in-depth description of
how many ideas were generated from the Brainwriting application, a list of some of the ideas
generated and an example of the piggybacking that occurred (i.e., from this idea______ this
other idea was generated________).
For each tool, be sure to include a description of what you worked on, why selected, how
effective the tool was (what were the results), and if applicable, list what other tools were also
used for that same application (you are still writing up a separate account of each so this is just
a very brief account of what other tools were used in the same application as this tool).
Summary: Sum up the overall experience. Some questions to consider include: What tool was
the most successful? What did you find interesting about completing the assignment? What
puzzled you or didn't work as well as you thought it might? What was easy or difficult? What
do you need to continue to practice or learn more about? What can you learn from this for
future applications?
Appendix: In the Appendix (labeled clearly) is any additional support material for each tool.
So for example, for brainstorming, you can either describe how many ideas you generated and
provide a list of some of those in the body of the paper under the heading Divergent Tool:
Brainstorming OR you can put in the appendix a copy of the typed list (or handwritten scanned

Nearly every tool comes in handy for any choice to be made or problems to be solved. As for the specific issue I needed to address, I used Brainstorming, Forced Connections, Excursions, and Why? What’s stopping you? for the Divergent Thinking whereas to the Convergent Thinking, I utilized the tools such as POINt, Card Sort, Paired Comparison Analysis, and an Evaluation Matrix. The challenge appeared to be seemingly simple at first glance but it actually had me thinking so much. I had to decide whether to D.I.Y some of the furniture I have in my room, or throw them out and shop for new ones or to hire professionals to update them.
Brainstorming is one of the divergent thinking tools that I used in helping me solve my dilemma. Brainstorming works by suggesting ideas out loud and then taking them down on either an electronic pad or actual paper. The idea is to take note of what comes into mind. I chose this tool because I think it would help me extract all the thoughts I have regarding my furniture. It proved to be applicable to my concern because I get to get visuals, even just in words, of all the prospects I have in my head. It also made me see how many choices I actually have in this matter I have to decide on.
Forced Connections tool was the next thing that I used. How this works is that I take a look at completely unrelated objects to my pressing problem, and think of ideas I can get from that item with regards to solving my issue. I believed that this tool was useful because it widens my capacity to think about the problem. Invoking ideas from utterly irrelevant things helped me think of solutions that did not cross my mind before. I think that this is a very applicable tool especially when hand in hand with brainstorming and other divergent thinking tools.
Although I already used Forced Connections, I wanted to think more outside the box and get a perspective of what I am not seeing. And so I applied Excursions to my problem. How this works is either to take an actual journey or an imaginary one and get inspiration from that trip. I did a little traveling to a corner in my area which I haven’t been to yet. I reflected on the things I experienced from the novel place.
Why? What’s stopping you? Having so many ideas already and even initial plans about my problem, I feel the need to actually confront what’s holding me back. This approach helps delve into the roots of the problem. It looks into one’s own need or desire, goals, and what have been preventing the plans to unfold. This tool is very applicable to indecisions like my own.
Now to Convergent Thinking tools that I used, first I opted for POINt. This approach works by assessing the plusses, opportunities, issues, and then by coming up with new thinking. It is easy to be nearsighted on the ideas I currently have, and so I supposed that POINt is necessary. I did weigh on the possibilities, prospects, and concerns on my problem and tried to come up with new ways to address the issues. This tool is applicable beyond doubt.
Card Sort is among the tools I used that really helped me come closer to the solution. This method works by ranking my options from favorite to least favorite. This way, it helps me see what’s really important for me and what solution I am really leaning into. Although, it does not finalize things yet but it is useful in sorting out which are my priorities.
After utilizing the Convergent Thinking tool, the Card Sort, I resorted to the Paired Comparison Analysis. I thought that although I have ranked down my choices, I would want to give it an even certain consideration. And so with Paired Comparison Analysis, I matched options against each other. Despite that I categorized them from most favorite to least favorite through Card Sort, some differences between two options are too cl...
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