This paper presents an exploratory study that transfers lessons on creativity and the use of CAD tools from an industry case study to engineering design education. The participant-observation case study found four influences of the use of CAD on creativity of designers. The one positive and three negative effects were confirmed by a theoretical investigation of creative problem solving in engineering design. Similar effects were also seen in the context of engineering education in a study that examined the broad, holistic aspects of student learning outside the paradigm of targeted instruction. The paper is based on the notion that students' creative design capabilities are formed through the interaction of CAD instruction and other factors from the wider educational environment. A competence formation matrix based on the concept of Accidental Competence formation was developed to analyze this combination of the effects of CAD usage with other educational factors. The analysis shows that these combinations have long-term positive and negative effects on the development of creative abilities in engineering students.

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