UC Forward classes are innovation-oriented, focused on developing new solutions, products, proceses, approaches, tools, or knowledge to help solve or understand a real-world problem. UC Forward courses are collaborative, inclusive, considering multiple perspectives and stakeholders in looking at a problem or issue. UC Forward classes are inter-, multi- or trans-disciplinary, taught by a single professor or often by a pair or team, sometimes including an outside expert or client.
UC Forward topics are bold, daring, risky, exciting, or cutting edge, often centered on pressing issues for the nation and the world, or about thinking deeply about future scenarios. Sometimes a partner or client will pose the problem that students will work on, or a professor will want to explore the intersection of two or more disciplines with students.
UC Forward courses may be taught as labs, studios, classroom courses or in the field. They may involve foreign travel. In all cases the learning is designed to be holistic, that is, to examine an issue from all angles in a spirit of curiosity, deep inquiry, self-reflection, and collaboration.
There are two types of UC Forward courses: those taught by individuals, whose courses earned the Attribute "T" for Transformational in e-Curriculum / OneStop, and then the courses taught by multiple faculty that applied for the annual funding from the Provost's Office, selected by peers for their innovation and transdisciplinarity. Both courses offer extraordinary educational experiences for students.
Definition of a Transformation Course (T): Transformation courses are specially designed learning experience where students develop the disposition to work across disciplines. Students are encouraged to become trans-disciplinary team members who create new ways of thinking and doing.
UC Forward courses exist at all levels. Examples include introductory experiences, select Honors seminars, and advanced undergraduate courses in all UC colleges. A gateway course HNRS 2031 Inquiry to Innovation introduces students to transdisciplinary theory and modes of inquiry including systems thinking, design thinkng, and other methodologies for group work and ideation that establishes a process for students to apply to their future endeavors.