Human-Centered Strategy Certificate

Make strategy accessible and actionable using principles of human-centered design

This certificate program will give you the tools and mindsets to design a winning strategy and ensure that strategy is actionable for your team and organization. In Designing Strategy, you’ll learn how to identify your strategic options and apply a customer-centric strategy process to help you make winning choices. In Activating Strategy, you’ll learn how to activate those choices by engaging stakeholders within your organization and building the shared understanding, alignment, and conditions teams need to deliver on strategy.

People across an organization make strategic choices every day. No matter where you sit in your organization, this program can help you ensure teams and individuals can move confidently from strategy to action.

Certificate Program Outcomes
  • Apply the Playing to Win strategy framework, a customer-centric method to create winning outcomes.
  • Enable others to take action on strategy by developing clear plans to assess, build, and mobilize your team's resources.
  • Translate strategy across functions and teams to achieve common goals and ensure the strategy is actionable and feasible.
  • Effectively organize, communicate, and activate strategy.
  • Help teams and individuals bring strategy to life through their everyday choices.
Skills You’ll Gain
Strategy Innovation Prototyping Resource Assessment
Format 2 Online Cohort Courses
Duration 2-3 Months*
Time 4 Hours/Week
Download Syllabus Download Syllabus
Download Syllabus
*Enroll in any June cohort course or certificate to get exclusive access to our new AI x Design Thinking Workshop Series.

Certificate Program Overview

While courses can be taken in any order, we recommend completing Designing Strategy first

  1. 1 Take Designing Strategy

    Starting Soon
    Unite rigor and creativity to create a successful strategy
    Cohort Course 5 Weeks
    Regular price
    $799
    Sale price
    $799
    Unit price
    per 
  2. 2 Take Activating Strategy

    Starting Soon
    Human-centered approaches for bringing strategy to life
    Cohort Course 5 Weeks
    Regular price
    $799
    Sale price
    $799
    Unit price
    per 


  1. 3 Receive and Share Your Certificate

    After completing the two courses, you’ll receive your Human-Centered Strategy Certificate of completion via email as a downloadable PDF within 1-2 weeks of completing the final required course. Certificates are configured for uploading and sharing on LinkedIn.

    Your IDEO U Human-Centered Strategy Certificate

Commonly Asked Questions

  • Course Order
    We recommend you take Designing Strategy first to learn how to surface the bigger challenge you’re facing, come up with possibilities to tackle it, and test to make a strategic choice. Then, take Activating Strategy to learn how to activate those choices by engaging stakeholders within your organization and building the shared understanding, alignment, and conditions that teams need to move confidently from strategy to action. Because of the depth contained in these two courses, we do not recommend taking both courses at once.
  • Should I take the Human-Centered Strategy Certificate or Business Innovation Certificate?
    We believe most people would benefit from taking both certificates to get a holistic understanding of how to apply the three design thinking principles of desirability, viability and feasibility to strategy. However, Business Innovation is most applicable for individuals and teams focused on translating strategy into new products and offers (ideating and testing new ideas in the market). Human-Centered Strategy is for individuals and teams focused on operationalizing, producing, and delivering those products and offers.
  • I WORK AT A (NON-PROFIT, SCHOOL, GOVERNMENT, STARTUP, SMALL BUSINESS). IS THIS PROGRAM RIGHT FOR ME?
    Yes. Though some of the frameworks and thinking in these courses are rooted in business, they’re still highly applicable to anyone who wants to drive innovative initiatives at work and grow ideas, confidence, and influence in their organization. In both Designing Strategy and Activating Strategy, case studies, terms, and examples were created to help different individuals see themselves and their organizations in the work.
  • Completion Time
    The program typically takes between 3-4 months to complete if courses are taken consecutively. However, there is no deadline for certificate completion.
  • Certificate Requirements
    If you’ve completed either Designing Strategy or Activating Strategy as a part of another certificate program or on its own, it will count toward your certificate of completion.
Learn more about program details in our FAQs

Certificate Program Requirements

Human-Centered Strategy Requirements

Frequently Asked Questions

With our limited-time Accelerated Change Leadership course, you have two options for how to earn the IDEO U Change Leadership Certificate.

Our limited-time Accelerated Change Leadership Certificate course is a 10-week experience that includes content from the three courses that make up the IDEO U Change Leadership Certificate program: Human-Centered Systems Thinking, Leading Complex Projects, and Designing for Change. If you complete all the assignments, you will receive the IDEO U Change Leadership Certificate at the end of the 10-week experience.

The non-accelerated version of the Change Leadership Certificate consists of three distinct cohort courses. In this version, you can complete the three courses in any order and receive the Change Leadership Certificate. If you’re entirely new to the program, we recommend you take Human-Centered Systems Thinking first to help you spot opportunities for change and discover impactful places to start.  Designing for Change will take you one step further, where you’ll learn to co-create and experiment with small changes to demonstrate potential and gain support. Finally, we recommend Leading Complex Projects as the program's final course, where you’ll learn how to successfully navigate the friction and uncertainty that often come when trying to scale change.

The single cohort-paced program typically takes 4-5 months if courses are taken consecutively.

However, there is no deadline for certificate completion. The accelerated version of the certificate program will take 10 weeks to complete.

If you’ve completed Designing for Change, Human-Centered Systems Thinking, or Leading Complex Projects as a part of another certificate program or on its own and want to complete the Change Leadership Certificate, you should take the remaining cohort courses. Completing all three courses will allow you to earn the Change Leadership Certificate.

The accelerated version of the Change Leadership Certificate is a single experience that includes content from all three courses (Designing for Change, Human-Centered Systems Thinking, and Leading Complex Projects). Completing this ten-week experience will earn you the IDEO U Change Leadership Certificate.

Unfortunately, this is the only offering of the Accelerated Change Leadership Certificate course available at the moment. Due to its design, it is not possible to transfer into the individual courses that make up the non-accelerated version of the Change Leadership Certificate Program.

The accelerated version of the IDEO U Change Leadership Certificate integrates the content from all three courses into a single 10-week learning experience. Due to its design, it is not recommended to take the accelerated version if you’ve already completed one or more of the courses that make up the Change Leadership program. We recommend that you continue to take the remaining courses as single cohort courses to complete the certificate requirements.

The course starts on Thursday, September 5, at 12:00 AM Pacific Time (UTC -7), with the introduction and lesson one opening. It fully opens on Monday, September 9, at 12:00 AM Pacific Time.

The Accelerated Change Leadership Certificate's early bird pricing is a limited-time offer: $1800 vs. the full price of $2397. The early bird pricing is available until July 15, 2024. 

Yes. Since you work in such complex systems, this certificate will be beneficial in helping you create change or navigate change within the system you’re working in. Though some of the frameworks and thinking in these courses are rooted in business, they’re still highly applicable to anyone who wants to create change or lead others through change. The case studies, terms, and examples were designed to help different individuals see themselves and their organizations in the work.

All of our certificate programs are fully online and flexible, so you can take them from any time zone, anywhere in the world. For cohort courses, the course teaching team will host scheduled virtual community conversations, which are optional. Times will be announced during the first week of the course and are set to accommodate as many time zones as possible.

While you can enroll in multiple courses at the same time, we strongly advise that you do so only if you are able to commit to a minimum of 5 hours per week for each course (for example, 10 hours per week for 2 courses) to ensure the most valuable learning experience. If that does not feel feasible, we recommend taking the courses separately and reviewing upcoming course dates on our course calendar.

We offer a discount when you enroll in multiple courses at the same time through some of our certificate programs, including Foundations in Design ThinkingBusiness InnovationHuman-Centered Strategy, and Communicating for Impact

You can also enter your email address at the bottom of this page in order to receive updates on future offers or possible discounts. 

Absolutely! We have had many teams go through our courses together. For those taking our courses as a team, we provide a number of additional benefits:

1. A Team Learning Guide, developed to provide your team with resources to facilitate offline discussions that complement the in-course experience.

2. A Manage Learners function, which provides visibility into your team's progress within the course.

3. The ability to create a private Learning Circle, which is a closed space for discussion on the learning platform specifically for your team.

For more information, visit our Team Learning page.

You can purchase a certificate by enrolling in all the courses associated with that certificate. Required courses are listed in the Certificate Program Overview section above. When you click enroll in each cohort course, you will proceed to our checkout page, where you can select your desired cohort date for each course.

Payment options include credit card, PayPal, or Shop Pay. For US customers, we also offer installment plans at checkout if you use the Shop Pay method of payment.We typically are not able to accommodate bank transfer or invoicing. However, if your order includes 10 seats or more, please contact hello@ideou.com and our team will be happy to review your request

What Others Are Saying

Caterina Bellavite
Caterina Senior Service Designer Siemens
Joanne Ng
Joanne Director of Global Operations New Story Charity
Donna Crain
Donna Experience Delivery Leader Deloitte
Mark Marion
Mark Senior Director of Member Services and Engagement NTCA–The Rural Broadband Association
Human-Centered Strategy Certificate
Certificate Program

“This was the perfect combination of theory and practice. It was an incredibly engaging online and self-paced course, and the materials are super clear. This is my third course and I know that what I have learned will be relevant to my everyday work, as has happened before.”

Caterina Bonn, Germany
Human-Centered Strategy Certificate
Certificate Program

“The course framework helped us break down the issues to identify key opportunities for our organization to design a solution. Using those insights and after a series of rapid prototyping, we have designed a blended finance housing model where we are offering the most competitive housing loan in Mexico.”

Joanne Mexico City, Mexico
Human-Centered Strategy Certificate
Certificate Program

“The course was fantastic. I've been around the block, but it was an amazing refresher. For someone just getting started it would provide an amazing roadmap for their work and building out strategies for their entire career.”

Donna Boulder, CO
Human-Centered Strategy Certificate
Certificate Program

“IDEO U has taken such care around every detail and it shows. TAs were very well prepared and engaged in the meetings. It was evident that the course was designed with many different learning modes in mind. The tools that spoke to me were easily accessible and served their intended purposes.”

Mark Washington, D.C.

The IDEO U Learning Experience

See

Our courses engage you through stories, expertise, and humor. Each lesson has a series of 3-5 minute videos that explain the why, what, and how of a specific topic. Plus we bring everything to life through case studies from around the globe.

Reflect

Our learning experiences have a variety of reflective activities to help you make the connections to your specific work challenges. Reflection is one of the most effective ways to deepen your professional impact.

Try

In order to develop new skills, you need to try them out through repeated practice and exposure to new contexts. Our courses provide opportunities to try out new behaviors online and through real-world projects.

Share

Knowledge is constructed through interaction with others—which is the foundation of our cohort experience. It’s through sharing and discussing with qualified teaching leads and a global peer network that you build greater understanding.

See

Our courses engage you through stories, expertise, and humor. Each lesson has a series of 3-5 minute videos that explain the why, what, and how of a specific topic. Plus we bring everything to life through case studies from around the globe.

Try

In order to develop new skills, you need to try them out through repeated practice and exposure to new contexts. Our courses provide opportunities to try out new behaviors online and through real-world projects.

Reflect

Our learning experiences have a variety of reflective activities to help you make the connections to your specific work challenges. Reflection is one of the most effective ways to deepen your professional impact.

Share

Knowledge is constructed through interaction with others—which is the foundation of our cohort experience. It’s through sharing and discussing with qualified teaching leads and a global peer network that you build greater understanding.