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Creative Education CPD (Online Short Course)

Course Duration

10 weeks; online

Launch Date

Feb 2021

Running over 5 Monday evenings, this short-course offers an in-depth and practical exploration of the changes you can make to reignite your passion for teaching, build your resilience and make your teaching more creative.

After a pandemic induced break from teaching in which the media has been rife with calls to transform education, teachers returned to schools in which everything, yet nothing has changed. However much we would like to make our education better, the pandemic has stretched teachers even thinner, leaving them exhausted by the mere thought of having to transform anything (else). Pupils’ deteriorating mental health, exam confusion, excessive workload, pressures of assessment targets and inspections, infection risks… The stressors in teaching are many and varied. This short course creates a space to catch your breath and take stock. It will leave you inspired and equipped with skills to reflect on your teaching and implement small changes to your professional practice that support your teaching in this new and uncertain world.

We believe that creativity is the route through which wider systemic challenges in education and personal resilience can be addressed. Responding to the reference to “Cultural Capital" in the OFSTED Framework 2019 and the opportunities this opens up, we will explore how integrating creativity into the classroom, as well as being more creative ourselves, might help us to approach teaching 'afresh'. You will gain ideas and design actions that allow your school to address ‘cultural capital’ whilst having a re-imagined education on the horizon. You will reflect on your teaching practice, identify what you already do creatively, where your passion lies and what you would like to improve on. You will learn to apply ‘Action Research’ to identify personal, institutional and systemic obstacles to incorporating creativity in your teaching.

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Please note this workshop will be taught solely online via Google Meet.

All courses are subject to student numbers and will only run if sufficient numbers are achieved. Plymouth College of Art reserves the right to cancel a course if insufficient student numbers are recruited.

How will I learn?

Lessons will be taught online and are interactive. Classes will use Google Meet to demonstrate software and allow participants to speak with the tutor and each other. Google Classroom will be used as a means of communication outside of class. Information will be shared using Google Drive.

This course runs on 5 Monday evenings over a 10 week period. The time between the sessions allows you to put ideas and theories that we discuss into practice and thereby learn what works best. The sessions, taking place online, will be interactive and conversational, with a diverse use of media and creative exercises. You will be asked to acquire a few simple materials before the course starts that will allow you to engage actively from home. Expect to invest around 2 hours of reading and preparing between each session.

This course is affiliated with the MA Creative Education: Making Learning that runs at Plymouth College of Art on a part-time basis.


  • Facilitator: Dr Natalia Eernstman, artist, educator and senior lecturer MA Creative Education at Plymouth College of Art

  • Invited expert: Dr Penny Hay, artist and educator, Research Fellow, Centre for Cultural and Creative Industries; Senior Lecturer in Arts Education, School of Education, Bath Spa University and Director of Research, House of Imagination (formerly 5x5x5=creativity)

  • Invited expert: Education Support, UK charity dedicated to supporting the mental health and wellbeing of education staff in schools, colleges and universities. TBC

What will I achieve?

This CPD course offers a space for you to breathe, reflect, exchange and learn playfully around your educational practice. Through interactive seminars, creative exercises, readings, discussion, as a participant you will:

  • Reflect on your teaching practice, identify what you already do creatively, where your passion lies and what you would like to improve on.

  • Gain an understanding of the OFSTED Framework 2019 and creative pedagogies that open up ways to incorporate creativity in your teaching.

  • Learn to apply ‘Action Research’ to identify personal, institutional and systemic obstacles to incorporating creativity in your teaching.

  • Learn within and from your ‘Community of Practice’: share best practice with other teachers and be inspired by examples of experts.

  • Design and implement a practical ‘action’ that benefits your teaching and school.

  • Identify pupil’s (creative) needs and how to address these in your teaching.

  • Gain an in-depth understanding of a set of creative theories and signature pedagogies that bolster what you feel ‘works’ in practice.

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What skills will I need?

Good computer literacy is essential, you must be able to effectively use a computer in order to watch and interact with the tutor on this course.

Who is it for?

  • Teachers in both primary and secondary education

  • Headteachers and managers in education

  • NQTs

  • Support workers

Equipment & Materials

You will need:

  • A laptop, tablet or desktop computer
  • Adequate internet connection*
  • Google account for Google Meet/classroom access
  • All handouts to be supplied electronically by lecturer

*In order for you to receive the best possible experience for this online course your internet connection must be fast enough for you to clearly watch demonstrations by the tutor. Unfortunately Plymouth College of Art is not liable for any refunds if you are experiencing any technical difficulties due to your own internet connection not working effectively.

How to apply

To make an application please click the "Book now" button at the top of this page.

For further information or to request an alternative format please email shortcourses@pca.ac.uk