About this Course

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Shareable Certificate
Earn a Certificate upon completion
100% online
Start instantly and learn at your own schedule.
Flexible deadlines
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Beginner Level
Approx. 12 hours to complete
English
Subtitles: English

Skills you will gain

ForesightCreativityStrategic PlanningSimulationInnovation
Shareable Certificate
Earn a Certificate upon completion
100% online
Start instantly and learn at your own schedule.
Flexible deadlines
Reset deadlines in accordance to your schedule.
Beginner Level
Approx. 12 hours to complete
English
Subtitles: English

Instructor

Offered by

Institute for the Future logo

Institute for the Future

Syllabus - What you will learn from this course

Week
1

Week 1

3 hours to complete

Introduction to Mental Simulation

3 hours to complete
6 videos (Total 40 min), 5 readings, 2 quizzes
6 videos
What can't be different in the future?10m
Technique #1: Predict the Past3m
Technique #2: Remember the Future6m
Technique #3: Hard Empathy6m
Neurological Pathways of Simulation9m
5 readings
Take a two-minute survey about the future!2m
Simulation Skills Brief: Your "cheat sheet" for this course10m
What is Mental Simulation?5m
Future-Proof Your Brain15m
How to "Fill in the Blanks" of Your Brain25m
1 practice exercise
Neurological Pathways of Simulation10m
Week
2

Week 2

3 hours to complete

First-Person Futures

3 hours to complete
5 videos (Total 40 min), 3 readings, 2 quizzes
5 videos
Thinking in Facts versus Thinking in First Person6m
Let's try some first person futures!6m
First Person Creativity7m
The Superstruct Game10m
3 readings
Why Your Future Self is a Stranger15m
Welcome to the Internet of Things25m
Superstruct Scenario10m
1 practice exercise
Why the brain thinks differently about your future self5m
Week
3

Week 3

3 hours to complete

Alternative Futures

3 hours to complete
6 videos (Total 47 min), 3 readings, 1 quiz
6 videos
SCENARIO: The Future of Marriage4m
Introduction to Alternative Futures7m
How to Envision Alternative Future (Part 1)5m
How to Envision Alternative Futures (Part 2)14m
Alternative Futures for Caregiving in 20319m
3 readings
The Future of Marriage Project (How We Did It)20m
TOOL: Envision Alternative Futures10m
Future of Caregiving in 203120m
Week
4

Week 4

3 hours to complete

Advanced Simulation Topics

3 hours to complete
6 videos (Total 34 min), 6 readings, 2 quizzes
6 videos
The Simtainer7m
What is Afrofuturism?3m
Full Body Simulation Part 112m
Full Body Simulation Part 27m
Congratulations on finishing this course!1m
6 readings
Future of Video Simulation15m
Future of Touch Simulation (Haptics)10m
Black to the Future (Afrofuturism)20m
Experiential Futures Show and Tell20m
Future of Newport, Year 206120m
An invitation to join our free Alumni Network2m
2 practice exercises
New Kinds of Simulation20m
Afrofuturism15m

Reviews

TOP REVIEWS FROM SIMULATION SKILLS: THIS IS YOUR BRAIN ON THE FUTURE

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About the Futures Thinking Specialization

Do you want to think about the future with more creativity and optimism? Do you want to see what’s coming faster, so you can be better prepared for disruptions and more in control of your future? Do you want to get better at changing what’s possible today – in your company, your industry, your community, and in your own life? This Specialization will introduce you to the practice of futures thinking, as developed and applied for the past 50 years by the Institute for the Future, a Silicon-Valley-based research and learning group founded in 1968. You’ll master essential foresight techniques. You’ll meet leading professional futurists. And you’ll choose one or more future topics you want to investigate with your new foresight skills. The Futures Thinking specialization is for anyone who wants to spot opportunities for innovation and invention faster. You can gain the skills and confidence to help YOU become someone who makes the future, instead of letting the future happen to you. You'll develop a more future-oriented mindset to make positive changes in your own life, as you start to see new possibilities more clearly and craft the personal future you want. This specialization is based on the “How to Think Like a Futurist” workshops taught by Jane McGonigal, PhD for Stanford University Continuing Studies. By taking this specialization, you'll have access to key lessons and tools from the Institute for the Future’s professional “Foresight Training” certification program....
Futures Thinking

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Access to lectures and assignments depends on your type of enrollment. If you take a course in audit mode, you will be able to see most course materials for free. To access graded assignments and to earn a Certificate, you will need to purchase the Certificate experience, during or after your audit. If you don't see the audit option:

    • The course may not offer an audit option. You can try a Free Trial instead, or apply for Financial Aid.
    • The course may offer 'Full Course, No Certificate' instead. This option lets you see all course materials, submit required assessments, and get a final grade. This also means that you will not be able to purchase a Certificate experience.
  • When you enroll in the course, you get access to all of the courses in the Specialization, and you earn a certificate when you complete the work. Your electronic Certificate will be added to your Accomplishments page - from there, you can print your Certificate or add it to your LinkedIn profile. If you only want to read and view the course content, you can audit the course for free.

  • If you subscribed, you get a 7-day free trial during which you can cancel at no penalty. After that, we don’t give refunds, but you can cancel your subscription at any time. See our full refund policy.

  • Yes, Coursera provides financial aid to learners who cannot afford the fee. Apply for it by clicking on the Financial Aid link beneath the "Enroll" button on the left. You'll be prompted to complete an application and will be notified if you are approved. You'll need to complete this step for each course in the Specialization, including the Capstone Project. Learn more.

  • This Course doesn't carry university credit, but some universities may choose to accept Course Certificates for credit. Check with your institution to learn more. Online Degrees and Mastertrack™ Certificates on Coursera provide the opportunity to earn university credit.

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