Co-creation Methodology to Promote 21st Century Skills in the Classroom Context


  • Luis Araújo Santos
  • Sara Proença Polytechnic Institute of Coimbra/ESAC, CERNAS
  • Vera Cristina Ribeiro



co-creation, active learninginnovation, students' perceptions, 21st century skills


Research studies on learning processes provide strong empirical evidence that active-learning methodologies promote students' engagement which has a positive impact on students' learning outcomes, skills, and performance. Against this background, active teaching-learning environments have seen increasing popularity over the past few decades. Several studies suggest that the implementation of new methodologies based on “ask more, instead of telling” approaches lead to an increase of students' performance. The purpose of this study is to explore the impact of an active learning unit based on innovation co-creation methodologies on students' perceptions of their learning outcomes and on the so-called 21st century skills, such as critical thinking, creativity, collaboration, and communication, in the context of a Portuguese higher education institution - the Polytechnic Institute of Coimbra (IPC). Founded in 1979, the IPC is a public higher education institution, oriented towards the pursuit of the objectives of polytechnic education, with an intrinsic vocation for applied research and the transfer of knowledge to the society. The empirical study is carried out based on data derived from a questionnaire survey applied to a class of students. Preliminary results reveal that the implementation of innovation co-creation methodologies in the classroom context is perceived by students as having a positive effect not only on the development of soft skills but also on their learning outcomes. Additionally, results give evidence that students improve their performance and therefore their final grade is higher. Results also reveal that students would like to see this active-learning methodology applied to other courses.