About the Program

The Creative Discovery Fellows program fills a critical gap on our campus, by helping instructors incorporate digital tools into the curriculum and supporting students to use them effectively, in ways that are personally meaningful and also serve the public good.
Jenn Stringer, Deputy Chief Information Officer, UC Berkeley

Launched in 2018, the UC Berkeley Creative Discovery Fellows Program (formerly Adobe Fellows) is a collaboration between the American Cultures (AC) Center and the Academic Innovation Studio, with strong support from Digital Learning ServicesEducational Technology Services, the Library, and Arts+Design. The program functions as a core part of the undergraduate Discovery initiative on the UC Berkeley campus.

The Creative Discovery Fellows program supports faculty from different disciplines to develop innovative assignments that leverage digital design tools in service of instructional goals and the core principles of discovery--intention, immersion, and reflection. The program also partners with faculty to implement these assignments, providing students with individual and group consultations, design/story feedback, workshops and trainings, in-class demonstrations, tutorials, and other resources to ensure that novices and experts alike are supported and encouraged to utilize the full range of their creativity.

In many AC courses, creative projects are central to "lifting" the analytical work of the classroom into broader circulation. The AC curriculum also serves as a nexus for socially, personally, and politically meaningful scholarship and community engagement. For these reasons, AC faculty are a natural fit and launching pad for the Creative Discovery Fellows program, and the program, in turn, serves to highlight the critical productivity and interconnectedness of this work. From an equity perspective, AC is also a "home" for underrepresented and marginalized students, whose experiences and stories may be devalued within a traditional academic context, and who traditionally have less access to technology and opportunities for creative production. 

The program has five main goals:

  1. Support digital literacy and innovation by helping faculty develop course assignments that leverage creative tools to deepen and enhance student learning
  2. Help students, particularly from marginalized groups, become "empowered producers" and see themselves as effective change makers
  3. Better leverage the university's existing investment in Adobe software, which is paid for by student fees
  4. Help make powerful examples of instruction and learning visible  
  5. Research and understand conditions for equity-oriented student learning within the context of creativity and social justice

Apply to Creative Discovery.

Our society is at a crossroads. We have on the one hand, storytellers and designers who tell beautiful, compelling — but often trivial (or even false) narratives. And on the other we have brilliant academics doing important research who don't seem able to make their findings accessible to a general audience....The Creative Discovery Fellows program is a big step forward to help students and faculty create accessible, compelling stories that capture peoples' attention and imagination.
Bill Allison, Chief Technology Officer, UC Berkeley

More About the Program:

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Research & Evaluation
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Program Model
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Case Studies