Become an entrepreneur in the fields that you are most passionate about!

Courses in the Innovation Studies minor build essential analytical skills to evaluate business and economic activity in historical and ethical contexts. After the initial courses are complete, you take a ‘big ideas’ seminar that challenges you to envision your own solutions to pressing problems, ethical concerns, and strategic opportunities.

The program prepares students for life after graduation by emphasizing the skills that employers most want from college graduates. Think of Innovation Studies as a toolkit with essential business and problem-solving skills that will enhance the core proficiencies of your major and apply those skills to the real world.


Innovation Studies courses are provided by 10 academic units on campus, including Art & Design, Business, Communication, Computer Science, Economics, English, History, Philosophy, Political Science, and Psychology.

In addition, the following gateway and seminar courses are offered this year:

  • Hist 248 – Innovation, Ethics, and Society – SO (4)

Fall 2020, Summer 2021 [both courses ONLINE]

An introduction to Innovation Studies and a gateway into the minor. Surveys the history of innovation, problem solving, and creativity in the global economy, emphasizing ethical behavior. Instructor: Michael Halvorson (History).

  • INOV 350 — Innovation Seminar (4)

Spring 2021 Mon/Wed, 2:00 pm-3:30 pm. [ONLINE]

The concluding seminar for Innovation Studies minors designed to expose students to the conceptual, ethical, and logistic issues involved in developing an innovative idea, process, product, or campaign. Instructors: Michael Halvorson and Mark Mulder

  • Hist 346 – History of Innovation and Technology – SO (4)

Spring 2021, Tues/Thurs, 12:00 pm-1:30 pm [ONLINE]

An alternative (upper division) gateway into the Innovation Studies minor. Surveys the role of innovation and technology from the Industrial Revolution to the computer age. Emphasizes clear writing and communication practices, teamwork, and building an ethical vocabulary for business and entrepreneurial activity. Instructor: Michael Halvorson (History)