SCAMPER

Your constantly-updated definition of SCAMPER and collection of videos and articles
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What is SCAMPER?

SCAMPER is a creative brainstorming technique that helps design teams explore challenges and generate ideas from different perspectives. It is an acronym that stands for Substitute, Combine, Adapt, Modify, Put to another use, Eliminate and Rearrange. Each letter represents a different approach to examine a problem and develop innovative solutions. 

Diagram showing the components of SCAMPER.

SCAMPER—one of UX design's most useful acronyms.

© Interaction Design Foundation, CC BY-SA 4.0

Why is SCAMPER Important in UX Design?

Creativity and innovation are essential for designers to craft exceptional user experiences in digital products. Designers constantly strive to generate fresh and original ideas that will solve problems well and delight users. However, it's common for designers to encounter creative blocks or struggle to come up with innovative solutions for design projects such as websites or apps. The SCAMPER method offers a way to tackle these blocks and arrive at fresh insights that can power the design process with innovative fuel.   

Long before SCAMPER featured in interaction design and digital design, Alex Osborn—the co-founder of the international advertising agency BBDO—had introduced the method with many of the questions, in 1953. In 1971, education administrator and author Bob Eberle developed it further. Eberle posed the questions as a mnemonic to develop young people’s imaginations. Perhaps unsurprisingly, SCAMPER would find fertile soil in the world of user experience (UX) design, where imagination, innovation and iteration are watchwords. 

SCAMPER provides a structured approach to ideation. It prompts UX designers to ask specific questions related to each letter in the acronym. Each question challenges them to think differently about the problem they are trying to solve and what a design involves. SCAMPER encourages them to explore a wide range of new possibilities and perspectives, and so makes the designer’s job easier.  

As a design tool, SCAMPER is important in UX design and design thinking for several reasons, as it:  

  1. Promotes creativity: SCAMPER provides a structured framework for designers to think creatively and generate innovative ideas. It also prompts designers to consider alternative approaches. When designers systematically explore different dimensions of the problem, they can break free from traditional thinking patterns and uncover fresh perspectives as they think out of the box. The different lenses that SCAMPER provides let designers view a problem or challenge from various angles. This sparks fresh insights, such as from the customer’s experience. From here, it can help uncover powerful and innovative solutions.   

  1. Encourages iteration and improvement: SCAMPER encourages designers to continuously iterate and improve their designs. It does this as they consider different ways to substitute, combine, adapt, modify, put to another use, eliminate and rearrange elements. This iterative process helps them refine and enhance the user experience in mobile apps, web design and more.  

  1. Enhances user-centric design: SCAMPER prompts designers to consider the needs and preferences of the users when they proceed through the various steps. This user-centric approach ensures that the final design meets—or exceeds—the users' expectations and solves their problems effectively. 

  1. Facilitates efficient problem-solving: SCAMPER provides a structured approach to problem-solving. This makes it easier for designers to navigate complex design challenges. When designers break down the problem into smaller components and systematically explore each aspect, they can find efficient and effective solutions. 

  1. Encourages collaborative design: SCAMPER works as a collaborative tool. It brings together designers, stakeholders and users to collectively explore different ideas and perspectives. This collaborative approach fosters teamwork and encourages diverse and out-of-the-box thinking. It also leads to more comprehensive and innovative solutions. 

Author and Human-Computer Interaction Expert, Professor Alan Dix explains how designers can think outside of the box: 

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How Do UX Designers Use SCAMPER?

Here are some steps to leverage SCAMPER and push the boundaries to delight users through design solutions that are truly innovative: 

Step 1: Define the problem or challenge

Before designers begin to implement SCAMPER, it's first crucial to clearly define the problem or challenge. This will provide a focused context to brainstorm ideas and explore potential solutions for real-life users of, for example, a designer’s website, including all the web pages. For example, designers can fine-tune a concrete problem statement for the target audience. 

Step 2: Substitute

Now it’s time to consider what elements of the design or problem designers can substitute or replace. They consider materials, components, processes or even user behaviors that are substitutable to improve the design or address the challenge at hand. It can also mean to change technologies or even the entire concept.

An illustration representing the Substitute part of SCAMPER.

© Interaction Design Foundation, CC BY-SA 4.0

For example, for an e-commerce website, designers might consider substituting traditional checkout forms with a more streamlined and user-friendly payment method. This could be one-click purchasing.  

Step 3: Combine

Next, designers explore the possibilities if they combine different features, ideas or components to create a more holistic and innovative solution. Here, designers consider how if they merge different elements, they can enhance the user experience or solve the problem more effectively.  

For instance, for a food delivery app, designers might combine real-time tracking with personalized recommendations to provide users with a unique and tailored experience. 

Illustration showing the Combine part of SCAMPER.

© Interaction Design Foundation, CC BY-SA 4.0

Step 4: Adapt

In this step, designers focus on how to adapt or adjust existing solutions or elements to better suit the specific problem or challenge. Designers work to conceive how they can modify the design, functionality or user flow to improve the overall experience. 

For example, for a mobile banking app, designers might adapt the authentication process to incorporate biometric features. These could be fingerprint or facial recognition for added convenience and security for customers’ bank accounts.  

Illustration showing the Adapt part of SCAMPER.

© Interaction Design Foundation, CC BY-SA 4.0

Step 5: Modify

Here, designers consider how they can modify or alter various aspects of the design to create a more impactful user experience. In the modify step, designers can alter the visual design, adjust the interaction flow or refine the information architecture to make it more effective or appealing. This could mean to change colors, shapes, sizes or even the overall structure of the design for a product or service. 

For instance, in a fitness tracking app, designers might modify the visual representation of progress if they incorporate gamification elements in the user interface (UI) design. These could be badges or rewards, to motivate and engage users.  

Illustration showing the Modify part of SCAMPER.

© Interaction Design Foundation, CC BY-SA 4.0

Step 6: Put to another use

Here, designers explore alternative uses or applications of the design or solution. They think about how they can repurpose the design or utilize it in different contexts or industries. This could be a powerful way to take an existing design and target new user segments or enter different markets with it.  

For example, a virtual reality headset for gaming can have another use in the healthcare industry. Designers could transform its place so it could feature in immersive therapy sessions or medical training.

Illustration showing the Put To Another Use part of SCAMPER.

© Interaction Design Foundation, CC BY-SA 4.0

Step 7: Eliminate

Here, designers identify and eliminate any unnecessary or redundant elements that detract from the user experience or that don’t add value. They seek to streamline the interface design by removing clutter. That way, they can improve usability and focus on what truly matters. Plus, they can reduce cognitive load for their users.  

For instance, for a productivity app, designers might eliminate unnecessary features or complex settings that overwhelm users and create a simpler and more intuitive interface. 

Illustration showing the Eliminate part of SCAMPER.

© Interaction Design Foundation, CC BY-SA 4.0

Step 8: Rearrange (sometimes called Reverse)

Here, designers consider how they can rearrange or reorganize the components or steps of the design to create a fresh perspective and uncover new opportunities. They might rearrange the user flow or information hierarchy. That can lead to more intuitive and engaging experiences for user interactions.  

For example, in the context of a recipe app, designers might rearrange the steps and ingredients to provide a more user-friendly and seamless cooking experience. 

Illustration showing the Rearrange part of SCAMPER.

© Interaction Design Foundation, CC BY-SA 4.0

Step 9: Evaluate and iterate

Finally, it’s time to evaluate the ideas designers generated through the SCAMPER process and find the most promising solutions. Designers should prototype and test these ideas with users. Then, they can iterate on the design based on the users’ feedback.  

Tips to Use SCAMPER in UX Design

To make the most of the SCAMPER method in UX design, designers and design teams should consider the following tips:  

  • Embrace divergent thinking: The essence of SCAMPER is to explore different possibilities. To think beyond the obvious solutions, approach the SCAMPER process with an open and curious mindset. Designers should let themselves explore unconventional ideas and possibilities.  

  • Collaborate with a diverse team: Engage a diverse team of designers, researchers, web developers and other stakeholders to leverage different perspectives and expertise during the SCAMPER process. This can lead to richer and more innovative solutions.  

  • Combine SCAMPER with other ideation techniques: SCAMPER is useful in conjunction with other brainstorming techniques. Such techniques could be mind mapping, storyboarding or user journey mapping, to enhance the ideation process and generate a broader range of ideas.  

  • Involve users early and often: Test with users, and incorporate user feedback and insights throughout the SCAMPER process. User-centered design is an essential way to create meaningful and impactful user experiences.  

  • Use visual aids: Designers visualize their ideas and solutions through sketches, wireframes, or prototypes. Visual aids can help convey and communicate concepts more effectively during the SCAMPER process.  

  • Document and organize ideas: It’s a good idea for designers to keep track of all the ideas they generate during the SCAMPER process. They should document these in a centralized repository or use tools like digital whiteboards or collaborative platforms to organize and share ideas with team members.  

  • Iterate and refine: Designers should remember that the SCAMPER process is iterative. So, it’s important to continuously iterate, refine and build upon the ideas they generate. That’s key to creating more robust and user-centered designs.  

  • Don't be afraid to take risks: SCAMPER encourages designers to think outside the box and explore unconventional solutions. So, don't be afraid to take risks and challenge the status quo.  

  • Embrace constraints: Constraints can be catalysts for creativity. So, designers can embrace the constraints of a project and use them as opportunities to come up with innovative solutions.

Image showing the inside of a McDonald's restaurant.

An example of a brand where one can see elements of SCAMPER is McDonald's. Founder Ray Kroc leveraged “put to other uses” through selling restaurants instead of just hamburgers, “eliminate” through allowing customers to serve themselves, rather than rely on waiters,and “rearrange”—customers pay before they eat.

© Author/Copyright holder: rob_rob2001 . Copyright terms and licence: CC BY-SA 2.0

Tools for SCAMPER in UX Design

While SCAMPER is primarily a technique that relies on creative thinking, several tools and software can work well with it. The following can support the ideation process and help UX designers apply SCAMPER effectively:  

  • Mind mapping tools like Miro can help designers visually organize their ideas and explore different dimensions of the problem. They allow designers to create interconnected diagrams that stimulate creativity and facilitate brainstorming.  

  • Design thinking workshops provide a structured environment for designers to apply SCAMPER and other ideation techniques. The workshops often involve hands-on activities, group discussions and collaborative exercises to foster creativity and innovation.  

  • Digital whiteboards and collaboration platforms like Mural or Miro enable remote teams to brainstorm and collaborate in real-time. These tools provide a virtual space for ideation. They let team members contribute ideas, add sticky notes and visually organize their thoughts.  

  • Prototyping tools like Figma, Adobe XD or Sketch enable designers to quickly create interactive prototypes to test their ideas with users. These tools facilitate the iterative process of applying SCAMPER. They allow designers to gather feedback and refine their designs.  

  • User research and testing tools like UserTesting or Optimal Workshop can help UX designers gather user feedback and insights throughout the SCAMPER process. These tools provide a platform to conduct usability tests, user interviews and surveys to validate and iterate on design ideas.  

While these tools can enhance the SCAMPER process, it is important to remember that the technique itself is independent of any specific software or tool. The key is to foster a mindset of creativity, curiosity and exploration, regardless of the tools a designer uses. 

Overall, it’s important to remember to approach SCAMPER with an open mindset, collaborate with a diverse team and iterate on ideas. The clarity and novelty where designers have fresh angles on problems, customer touchpoints and so much more can be immense. Plus, it can deliver powerful insights that might not come from other brainstorming sessions.  

Learn More about SCAMPER

Take our Creativity: Methods to Design Better Products and Services course.  

Read our piece SCAMPER: How to Use the Best Ideation Methods for added insights.  

See Want seven times more design ideas? Use the SCAMPER techniquie by Andrew Wilshere for further information. 

Read Osborn’s Lost SCAMPER: Reappreciating Applied Imagination by GK VanPatter for more in-depth details. 

Questions related to Scamper

What are common pitfalls when designers apply SCAMPER, and how can they avoid these? 

A common pitfall when designers apply SCAMPER is that they can overlook the simplicity and flexibility of the technique. This can lead to rigid or superficial application. Designers often focus too narrowly on one aspect. For example, they might substitute elements and not consider the potential of if they were to combine them for innovative solutions. This narrow focus can limit creativity and result in missed opportunities for breakthrough ideas. 

To avoid these pitfalls, designers should embrace the full spectrum of SCAMPER's possibilities. It’s important to begin with a thorough understanding of each SCAMPER element. 

Take our Master Class Harness Your Creativity to Design Better Products with Author and Human-Computer Interaction Expert, Professor Alan Dix for many insights into creativity and design.

Can individual designers use SCAMPER, or is it more effective in team settings?

Yes, individual designers can use SCAMPER, and it proves effective in both solo and team settings. The key to SCAMPER's success lies not in the number of people who apply it but in the depth of creativity and perspective each participant brings to the process. 

When individual designers apply SCAMPER, they benefit from the freedom to explore ideas without the constraints of group dynamics. This autonomy allows them to dive deep into each aspect of SCAMPER—for example, they might substitute elements or combine them in novel ways—without the need to reach a consensus. Individual use encourages deep, personal reflection, which enables designers to uncover unique insights and innovative solutions. 

In team settings, SCAMPER fosters collaboration and the exchange of diverse viewpoints. Each team member contributes different experiences and expertise, which enriches the brainstorming process. Teams can cover more ground as they tackle different SCAMPER elements simultaneously or when they build on each other's ideas. This leads to a richer array of creative solutions. However, the challenge lies in how to manage diverse opinions and ensure that everyone hear’s everyone else’s voice. 

To maximize SCAMPER's effectiveness, whether solo or in a team, designers should aim to: 

1. Open their mind to all possibilities, and resist the urge to dismiss unconventional ideas prematurely. 

2. Document all ideas, no matter how outlandish they may seem, as they could lead to viable solutions upon further exploration. 

3. Encourage a culture of feedback and iteration, where they refine ideas and improve on them through constructive critique. 

Ultimately, the effectiveness of SCAMPER hinges on the willingness to explore and iterate on ideas, regardless of the setting. When designers embrace this flexible approach, they can unlock their creative potential and innovate regardless of whether they work alone or in a group. 

Download our free SCAMPER template and get started applying valuable insights and techniques to help derive maximum value from SCAMPER. 

How can designers use "Eliminate" to achieve minimalist design?

Designers can use "Eliminate" to achieve minimalist design when they focus on simplicity and remove unnecessary elements. This approach means that designers strip away excess to reveal the essence of a design, and ensure that every feature serves a purpose. To apply "Eliminate" effectively, designers must assess each element of their work, and ask whether it adds value to the user experience or merely clutters the design. 

First, it’s important to identify the core functionality of the product or interface. Understand what the user truly needs to accomplish their goals. This understanding forms the basis for deciding what to remove. Next, evaluate every component, such as colors, textures, features, and content, to determine its necessity. Consider removing an element if it does not support the primary function or enhance usability. 

Moreover, to simplify the user interface (UI) involves more than just aesthetics. Designers must also streamline user flows to reduce steps needed to perform actions, eliminate redundant or underused features that distract from the main tasks, and use negative space effectively to draw attention to important elements. 

To adopt a minimalist approach also means to choose typography, color schemes and imagery with intention. To limit font variations, use a restrained color palette and select impactful imagery can create a cohesive and focused design. 

Finally, remember that minimalism does not mean that designers make everything as simple as possible; it’s more about finding the right balance. So, designers should continuously test and refine a design, and ensure it remains user-friendly and functional without unnecessary complexity. 

Take our Master Class How to Get Started with Usability Testing with Cory Lebson, Principal and Owner of Lebsontech LLC. 

How can designers use SCAMPER to redesign an e-commerce website for a better user experience? 

Designers can use SCAMPER to redesign an e-commerce website for a better user experience if they creatively rethink the site's elements and interactions. Here’s how: 

1. Substitute: Replace complex navigation menus with simpler, intuitive ones. Consider substituting text-heavy descriptions with icons or videos to explain product features. 

2. Combine: Merge related categories or products to simplify the browsing process. To combine customer reviews with product descriptions can enhance trust and decision-making. 

3. Adapt: Look at successful e-commerce websites outside the industry. Adapt their navigation strategies or checkout processes to fit the website. 

4. Modify: Change the layout of product pages to highlight important information, such as price, benefits and the add-to-cart button. To modify the color scheme so as to improve readability and draw attention to special offers can also be effective. 

5. Put to another use: Utilize user-generated content, like customer photos or reviews, in new ways, such as on the homepage or in promotional materials, to build community and trust. 

6. Eliminate: Remove unnecessary steps in the checkout process or redundant information that clutters product pages. If users have no distractions, they can focus on making a purchase. 

7. Rearrange: Rearrange elements on the homepage to prioritize sales, new arrivals or popular products. Experiment with the order of sections to find the layout that encourages exploration and purchase. 

Watch our video about empathy with users to appreciate the need to design to suit their needs best: 

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Are there advanced variations of SCAMPER for experienced designers?

Yes, there are advanced variations of SCAMPER tailored for experienced designers, which offer more complex and nuanced approaches to innovation. These advanced techniques build on the fundamental SCAMPER principles but delve deeper into strategic and analytical thinking. Here’s how experienced designers can leverage these variations:

Integrated thinking: Combine multiple SCAMPER techniques simultaneously to create multifaceted solutions. For example, a designer might modify a product while also considering its potential for combination with other services or products for a new offering.

Iterative application: Apply SCAMPER in iterative design cycles, and refine and reevaluate solutions through continuous feedback loops. This approach helps to refine concepts more deeply, and ensure they meet user needs effectively.

Contextual adaptation: Tailor SCAMPER techniques to specific design challenges or industries. Experienced designers can adapt the principles to fit unique contexts, and draw on their deep understanding of specific user groups or market dynamics.

Collaborative exploration: Use SCAMPER in collaborative settings to harness the collective creativity of cross-functional teams. This variation emphasizes the synergy between different expertise areas, enriching the ideation process.

Technological integration: Incorporate the latest technology trends and digital tools in the SCAMPER process. This might mean to use data analytics to inform the "Eliminate" phase or virtual reality to simulate and test "Modify" or "Adapt" ideas.

Advanced variations of SCAMPER encourage experienced designers to push the boundaries of conventional thinking. They can leverage their skills and knowledge to explore innovative solutions deeply. These approaches facilitate a more strategic and comprehensive use of SCAMPER, and lead to groundbreaking designs and solutions.

UX Designer and Author of Build Better Products and UX for Lean Startups, Laura Klein explains the value of cross-functional teams.

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How can designers integrate SCAMPER with other design thinking tools?

Designers can integrate SCAMPER with other design thinking tools to enhance creativity and problem-solving in their projects. Here’s how to blend SCAMPER with widely-used design thinking methodologies: 

1. Empathy mapping: Before applying SCAMPER, use empathy maps to deeply understand user needs and emotions. This understanding helps to pinpoint where to apply SCAMPER techniques effectively, and ensure solutions are user-centered. 

2. Ideation sessions: Combine SCAMPER with brainstorming sessions to generate innovative ideas. Start with brainstorming to open up the creative space, then apply SCAMPER techniques to refine, expand, or pivot these ideas based on user needs and project goals. 

3. Prototyping: Use SCAMPER in the prototyping phase to explore various ways to bring ideas to life. For instance, designers who modify or combine elements of different prototypes can end up with innovative solutions that better meet user expectations. 

4. User journey mapping: After mapping out user journeys, apply SCAMPER to identify and improve touchpoints. Eliminate unnecessary steps, rearrange sequences for better flow, or substitute touchpoints with more engaging alternatives. 

Designers who integrate SCAMPER with these tools can find it offers a structured yet flexible approach to tackle design challenges from multiple angles. It encourages designers to explore beyond the obvious solutions, which fosters innovation and ensures the end product resonates with users. 

Take our Design Thinking: The Ultimate Guide course to appreciate the full scope of design thinking as a powerful design process. 

Can "Rearrange" or "Reverse" introduce novel navigation schemes in web design? 

Yes, "Rearrange" or "Reverse" can introduce novel navigation schemes in web design, and encourage designers to think outside traditional layouts and conventions. When designers rearrange elements, they can create more intuitive and engaging user experiences. For instance, if they place navigation menus in unexpected areas, like the bottom of the screen, it can draw users' attention to less explored content. This can potentially increase engagement. 

If designers reverse the typical order of website elements, such as if they flip the menu and content placement, they can challenge users' expectations and create a memorable experience. This approach can highlight specific sections of a site or make the navigation journey more interactive. 

However, it's crucial to balance innovation with usability. Designers who implement any novel navigation scheme should user-test it to ensure it doesn't confuse or frustrate users. The goal is to enhance the user experience with websites that are more intuitive and enjoyable to navigate, not to complicate the user journey. 

Ultimately, "Rearrange" and "Reverse" offer powerful ways to rethink web design, and encourage creative solutions that stand out in a crowded digital landscape. Designers who experiment with these techniques can discover unique navigation schemes that enhance user engagement and satisfaction. 

Take our Master Class How to Get Started with Usability Testing with Cory Lebson, Principal and Owner of Lebsontech LLC.

Can SCAMPER help to identify user needs and pain points more effectively? 

Yes, SCAMPER can help to identify user needs and pain points more effectively. This creative technique encourages designers to think differently about products or services, and lead to insights that might not emerge through traditional analysis. Here’s how: 

1. Substitute: To ask what elements a designer can substitute might reveal unnecessary features or highlight missing functionalities that fulfill user needs better. 

2. Combine: To combine aspects of different products or services can uncover gaps in the current user experience, and point to unmet needs or pain points. 

3. Adapt: To look at how players in other industries address similar challenges can inspire solutions for unarticulated user needs. 

4. Modify: To modify the scale or properties of a service or product can highlight ways to make it more accessible or appealing to users. This can address potential pain points. 

5. Put to another use: To think about alternative uses for a product or service can reveal new user groups or needs that the original design overlooked. 

6. Eliminate: To consider what elements one might eliminate can help focus on what users truly value. This can streamline the experience and remove frustrating features. 

7. Rearrange: To rearrange the components of a service or product might suggest more intuitive or user-friendly configurations. 

When designers apply SCAMPER, they engage in a structured yet flexible exploration of possibilities. They often uncover deeper insights into what users really need and where their frustrations lie. 

Watch our video about empathy with users to appreciate the need to design to suit their needs best: 

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What are highly cited scientific articles on the subject of SCAMPER?

1. Park, Y. J., Kim, C., & Yoon, J. (2019). Creativity and design method in idea generation: the comparison between intuitive approach vs structured approach.

This publication by Park, Kim, and Yoon explores the comparison between intuitive and structured approaches in idea generation within design methods. By contrasting Brain Writing and S.C.A.M.P.E.R methodologies, the study investigates the efficiency of each method in fostering creativity. The research findings reveal that while there was no significant difference in creativity among the ideas generated using different methods, a radical approach proved more effective in generating a higher quantity of ideas. The study emphasizes the importance of design methods in enhancing creativity and provides valuable insights for further exploration in this area. 

2. Boonpracha, J., Roong-in, J., Lookraksa, S., Wongtanasuporn, P., Kooptiwoot, S., & Seangkong, S. (2023). Creativity of Students’ Cultural Product Design Using the SCAMPER Technique.

This publication by Boonpracha et al. focuses on assessing the creativity of Thai product design students utilizing the SCAMPER technique for cultural product design. The study conducted at Suan Sunandha Rajabhat University in Bangkok involved 25 third-year students aged 19-21 over an eight-week period. By measuring factors like fluency, flexibility, originality, and elaboration, the research evaluated the students' creativity in generating innovative ideas using SCAMPER. The findings indicated that the technique significantly contributed to enhancing the students' ability to generate creative ideas in the realm of cultural product design, highlighting the effectiveness of SCAMPER in fostering creativity among students. 

3. Ariyani, Y. D., Wilujeng, I., & Dwiningrum, S. (2022). Bibliometric analysis of SCAMPER strategy over the past 20 years. International Journal of Evaluation and Research in Education (IJERE), 11(4), 1930. DOI: 10.11591/ijere.v11i4.22316.  

 This publication by Ariyani et al. is influential for its in-depth bibliometric analysis of SCAMPER research trends spanning two decades. The study explores the core research and authors in the SCAMPER field, revealing a consistent upward trend in SCAMPER research over the past 20 years, particularly in recent times. By leveraging data from various reputable sources like Google Scholar, Pubmed, and Scopus, the authors offer valuable insights into the application of SCAMPER strategies for fostering 21st-century skills. Through visualizations and network analyses, focusing on keywords like creative thinking, the paper sheds light on how different disciplines such as science, engineering, architecture, and more have studied SCAMPER. This research significantly contributes to understanding the evolving landscape of SCAMPER strategies and their impact on skill development across diverse fields. 

What are highly regarded books about SCAMPER?

Brostow, A. A. (2015). Become an Inventor: Idea-Generating and Problem-Solving Techniques with Element of TRIZ, SIT, SCAMPER, and More.  

 Become an Inventor: Idea-Generating and Problem-Solving Techniques by Adam Adrian Brostow is a compelling book that explores various idea-generating techniques and creativity tools from historical, critical, and personal perspectives. It not only showcases these techniques but also elucidates the relationships between them through a plethora of simple and complex examples, including real patented inventions. From systematic to random approaches, the book demonstrates how these techniques are applicable to problem-solving scenarios ranging from playful puzzles to practical real-world challenges. By emphasizing the interconnectedness of the natural world, art, and invention, and touching on topics like constrained creativity, lateral thinking, and leveraging historical knowledge for innovation, this book serves as a valuable resource for engineers, scientists, students, inventors, and anyone engaged in creative problem-solving endeavors. 

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Literature on SCAMPER

Here’s the entire UX literature on SCAMPER by the Interaction Design Foundation, collated in one place:

Learn more about SCAMPER

Take a deep dive into SCAMPER with our course Creativity: Methods to Design Better Products and Services .

The overall goal of this course is to help you design better products, services and experiences by helping you and your team develop innovative and useful solutions. You’ll learn a human-focused, creative design process.

We’re going to show you what creativity is as well as a wealth of ideation methods―both for generating new ideas and for developing your ideas further. You’ll learn skills and step-by-step methods you can use throughout the entire creative process. We’ll supply you with lots of templates and guides so by the end of the course you’ll have lots of hands-on methods you can use for your and your team’s ideation sessions. You’re also going to learn how to plan and time-manage a creative process effectively.

Most of us need to be creative in our work regardless of if we design user interfaces, write content for a website, work out appropriate workflows for an organization or program new algorithms for system backend. However, we all get those times when the creative step, which we so desperately need, simply does not come. That can seem scary—but trust us when we say that anyone can learn how to be creative­ on demand. This course will teach you ways to break the impasse of the empty page. We'll teach you methods which will help you find novel and useful solutions to a particular problem, be it in interaction design, graphics, code or something completely different. It’s not a magic creativity machine, but when you learn to put yourself in this creative mental state, new and exciting things will happen.

In the “Build Your Portfolio: Ideation Project”, you’ll find a series of practical exercises which together form a complete ideation project so you can get your hands dirty right away. If you want to complete these optional exercises, you will get hands-on experience with the methods you learn and in the process you’ll create a case study for your portfolio which you can show your future employer or freelance customers.

Your instructor is Alan Dix. He’s a creativity expert, professor and co-author of the most popular and impactful textbook in the field of Human-Computer Interaction. Alan has worked with creativity for the last 30+ years, and he’ll teach you his favorite techniques as well as show you how to make room for creativity in your everyday work and life.

You earn a verifiable and industry-trusted Course Certificate once you’ve completed the course. You can highlight it on your resume, your LinkedIn profile or your website.

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