Innovation Inspired by Nature: A Biomimicry Challenge

Course Description

We will explore the design thinking process to investigate the many environmental issues our societies face and come up with creative solutions to innovate from nature. This program will dive into areas of Biomimicry, ranging from transportation to energy. First, you will learn how to observe nature, the different patterns that appear in nature, and how close observation can support and inform biometric design. Then, you will learn how to identify a problem and formulate a design question.

This course includes an academic project that you will work on over the two weeks and present on the final day to your peers. You will participate in a design challenge by researching an environmental issue and using the design thinking process to develop a solution with nature as their inspiration. You will engage in peer review and use constructive feedback from your peers to continually improve your design, eventually presenting and sharing the results of your projects through visual presentations.

Throughout the course, you will be expected to complete relevant readings and research out of class to inform their projects. The course will also include field trips to the Roger Williams Park Zoo, which is a 40-acre living classroom. Visits to the Zoo will serve as inspiration for the design challenge and an opportunity to observe nature and animals first hand.

By the end of this course, you will learn how to:
• Identify a problem and formulate a clear “design question”
• Find patterns in nature that address problems and model solutions
• Use biological strategies to inform potential design solutions
• Design solutions to environmental problems based on biological patterns and strategies
• Construct, test, assess and redesign, to create the most effective solution

Come discover the amazing field of Biomimicry and get inspired by nature!


A year of biology is recommended.


One Section Available to Choose From:

Online sections of Pre-College courses are offered in one of the following modalities: Asynchronous, Mostly asynchronous, or Blended. Please review full information regarding the experience here.

Dates: July 18, 2022 - July 29, 2022
Duration: 2 Weeks
Meeting Times: M-F 8:30A-11:20A and 2 afternoon class sessions per week
Status: Closed
Format: On-Campus
Instructor(s): Angelica Bazinet
Andrea Stein
Course Number: 10001