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Article

Exploring the “Three Ps” of Service-Learning: Practice, Partnering, and Pressures  

Jennifer S. Leigh and Amy Kenworthy

Over the last three decades, service-learning has become a well-known experiential learning pedagogy in both management education and higher education more broadly. This popularity is observed in the increasing number of peer-reviewed publications on service-learning in management and business education journals, and on management education topics within higher education journals focused on civic engagement and community-based teaching and learning. In this field of study, it is known that service-learning can result in positive outcomes for students, faculty, and community members. In particular, for students, positive results are related to mastery of course content and group process skills like teamwork and communication, leadership, and diversity awareness. Despite the rise in scholarship, service-learning instructors still face several challenges in the area of best practice standards, fostering deep and cohesive partnerships, and managing institutional pressures that disincentivize engaged teaching practices. With constantly evolving challenges in management education, continued research is needed to understand a variety of service-learning facets such as platforms (face-to-face, hybrid, and virtual learning), populations (graduate vs. undergraduate populations and adult vs. traditional college-age learners), measurement (how to assess university-community partnerships and faculty instruction), and which institutional policies and procedures can enable and reward community-engaged teaching and learning approach.

Article

Thinking Critically in Management Education  

Clare Rigg

Most would argue that critical thinking is core to higher education; that a fundamental purpose is to cultivate students’ capacity to critique arguments, to scrutinize evidence, and to reason logically. However, in management education, a different take on thinking critically emerged in the 1980s, provoked by dissatisfaction with a mainstream management education which appeared happy to teach managers how to reason, analyze, and critique, without asking fundamental questions about ends, means, values, and consequences for employees, consumers, the environment, or society. In this vein, critical management education (CME) promotes a critical engagement with the world through a combination of questioning the legitimacy of knowledge, critical reflection, and critical being or action. The purpose of thinking critically in management education is seen as moving in the direction of greater social justice and a world in which neither people, nor the environment, are oppressed. CME can encompass both critical content and critical pedagogy. Frameworks for thinking critically in CME have broadened from the original neo-Marxist and hegemony theory employed in critical management studies (CMS) to draw from postmodernist, post-structuralist, psychodynamic, feminist, ecological, critical-realist, postcolonial theory, critical race theory, and queer theory. Critical pedagogy in management education has drawn from the longer traditions of community and radical adult education, with their practices of participative methods and dialogue. In addition, reflexivity plays a central part. Teaching and learning methods used by critical management educators as ways to explore the messiness, contradictions, and paradoxes of organizations are wide and varied, and include film, drama, and literature as well as bodywork such as yoga and meditation. Criticisms of CME include the right of academics to unsettle students’ sense of themselves, potentially disruptive effects of critical reflection, educators’ presumed moral superiority, neglect of issues of race and gender, as well as the challenge that critical management is an oxymoron. To provoke critical thinking challenges educators to redefine their role and their assumptions about learning. Attempting to be a CME educator has been likened to working on the margins, as a tempered radical, with attendant stresses and risks of student, peer, and institutional disapproval. Experienced educators advocate finding “uncontested niches” to develop CME modules and materials such as an optional module or new course; exploiting spaces which speak to the priorities of institutions (such as esteem and rankings) as well as appeal to students. Research on CME has been largely restricted to single reflective accounts and evaluations of educator practice. Rich though these are, it means the field has many unanswered questions that invite further research. These include: • What are the implications of hyper-diversity in the classroom for critical pedagogies? • What are junior faculty’s experiences of trying to introduce criticality into management education? • How can CME respond to changing societal challenges? • What might be the implications of post-human socio-materiality? • What can CME offer to undergraduate and post-experience constituencies? • How can CME make a difference to management practice?

Article

Executive Education  

Rolv Petter Amdam

Executive education, defined as consisting of short, intensive, non-degree programs offered by university business schools to attract people who are in or close to top executive positions, is a vital part of modern management education. The rationale behind executive education is different from that of the degree programs in business schools. While business schools enroll students to degree programs based on previous exams, degrees, or entry tests, executive education typically recruits participants based on their positions—or expected positions—in the corporate hierarchy. While degree programs grade their students and award them degrees, executive education typically offers courses that do not have exams or lead to any degree. Executive education expanded rapidly in the United States and globally after Harvard Business School launched its Advanced Management Program in 1945. In 1970, around 50 university business schools in the United States and business schools in at least 43 countries offered intense executive education programs lasting from three to 18 weeks. During the 1970s, business schools that offered executive education organized themselves into an association, first in the United States and later globally. From the 1980s, executive education experienced competition from the corporate universities organized by corporations. This led the business schools to expand executive education in two directions: open programs that organized potential executives from a mixed group of companies, and tailor-made programs designed for individual companies. Despite being an essential part of the activities of business schools, few scholars have conducted research into executive education. Extant studies have been dominated by a focus on executive education in the context of the rigor-and-relevance debate that has accompanied the development of management education since the early 1990s. Other topics that are touched upon in research concern the content of courses, the appropriate pedagogical methods, and the effect of executive education on personal development. The situation paves the way for some exciting new research topics. Among these are the role of executive education in creating, maintaining, and changing the business elite, the effect of executive education on socializing participants for managerial positions, and women and executive education.

Article

The Progress and Promise of Management Education Research  

George Hrivnak

Management education (ME) is a research field in which scholars employ a plurality of theoretical and methodological approaches to critically examine the people, practices, processes and institutions engaged in facilitating and improving learning and development of current and aspiring managers in a variety of contexts. Although research in the field has grown considerably in terms of both quantity and quality, ME scholars have yet to establish consensus regarding a strong theoretical foundation for their work. This foundation is important to both enable progress through cumulative scholarship and to provide directions for future research. This future research should focus on how students learn, as well as effective approaches to facilitating and assessing student learning. Strengthening the theoretical basis and research methods used in this research will enable evidence-based practice and enhance the legitimacy of this important field.

Article

Experiential Learning and Education in Management  

D. Christopher Kayes and Anna B. Kayes

Experiential learning describes the process of learning that results from gathering and processing information through direct engagement with the world. In contrast to behavioral approaches to learning, which describe learning as behavioral changes that result from the influence of external factors such as rewards and punishments, learning from experience places the learner at the center of the learning process. Experiential learning has conceptual roots in John Dewey’s pragmatism. One of the most influential approaches to experiential learning in management and management education is David Kolb’s experiential learning theory (ELT) and the learning cycle that describes learning as a four-phase process of direct experience, reflection, abstract thinking, and experimentation. Experiential learning has been influential in management education as well as adult education because it addresses a number of concerns with traditional education and emphasizes the role of the learner in the learning process. It has been adopted by over 30 disciplines across higher education and has been extensively applied to management, organizations, and leadership development. The popularity of the experiential learning approach is due to many factors, including the growing discontent with traditional education, the desire to create more inclusive and active learning environments, and a recognition of the role that individual differences plays in learning. A renewed interest in experiential learning has brought about new and expanded conceptualizations of what it means to learn from experience. Variations on experiential learning include critical approaches to learning, brain science, and dual-processing approaches. While the term “experiential learning” is used by scholars to describe a specific philosophy or theory of learning, it often refers to many management education activities, including the use of experiences outside the classroom such as study abroad, internships, and service learning. Experiential learning also includes educational “experiential” learning activities inside the classroom. Within organizations, experiential learning provides an underlying conceptual framework for popular learning and leadership development programs such as emotional intelligence, strengths-based approaches, and appreciative inquiry. There is a growing recognition that experiential learning is the basis for many management practices such as strategy creation, research and development, and decision-making. Applications of experiential learning and education in management include simulations and exercises, learning style and educator roles, learning as a source of resilience, learning attitudes and other learning-based experiences, learning flexibility, cross-cultural factors, and team learning. Emerging research interest is also found in the relationship between experiential learning and expertise, intuition, mastery, and professional and career development, decision-making, and judgment in organizations.

Article

The Arts and the Art and Science of Management Teaching  

Joan V. Gallos

The arts have played a major role in the development of management theory, practice, and education; and artists’ competencies like creativity, inventiveness, aesthetic appreciation, and a design mindset are increasingly vital for individual and organizational success in a competitive global world. The arts have long been used in teaching to: (a) explore human nature and social structures; (b) facilitate cognitive, socioemotional, and behavioral growth; (c) translate theory into action; (d) provide opportunities for professional development; and (e) enhance individual and systemic creativity and capacities for change. Use of literature and films are curricular mainstays. A review of the history of the arts in management teaching and learning illustrates how the arts have expanded our ways of knowing and defining managerial and leadership effectiveness—and the competencies and training necessary for them. The scholarship of management teaching is large, primarily ‘how-to’ teaching designs and the assessments of them. There is a clear need to expand the research on how and why the arts are and can be used more effectively to educate professionals, enable business growth and new product development, facilitate collaboration and team building, and bring innovative solutions to complex ideas. Research priorities include: the systematic assessments of the state of arts-based management teaching and learning; explorations of stakeholder attitudes and of environmental forces contributing to current educational models and practices; analyses of the learning impact of various pedagogical methods and designs; examining the unique role of the arts in professional education and, especially, in teaching for effective action; mining critical research from education, psychology, creativity studies, and other relevant disciplines to strengthen management teaching and learning; and probing how to teach complex skills like innovative thinking and creativity. Research on new roles and uses for the arts provide a foundation for a creative revisiting of 21st-century management education and training.