It is time for MBA programmes to reinvent themselves and adopt various pedagogies to stay relevant to modern times, says DR PRATIMA SHEOREY
For several years, MBA programmes enjoyed respectability in academia and prestige in the business world. An individual with an MBA degree from a reputed institute was the first preference of almost every recruiter. However, the way MBA programmes are viewed in the industry today has undergone a massive change.
The industry states that MBA programmes are failing to impart relevant skills, prepare leaders, and foster professionals who can match the demands of the present times.
Hence, it is time for B-schools to reinvent themselves and adopt various pedagogies to stay relevant to modern times. Here are a few pointers that elucidate the six changes we are bound to see in management institutes a decade from now.
Interactive and immersive learning
Today, management education means mostly learning through textbooks and e-learning sources. This means students do not experience a particular concept to understand it, rather they learn by hearing or reading it. Studies suggest that the most effective way to learn something is through practical implementation. This is because it helps to remember information better, encourages self-learning, and imbibes confidence. Hence, in the future, colleges are expected to adopt a hands-on learning pedagogy. To implement a hands-on learning curriculum, universities can organise networking events, international internships, use VR tools for conducting virtual field trips, create gamification experiences for addressing corporate challenges and more.
This is a combination of conventional and digital curriculum. Very soon, colleges will create a course curriculum that can be taught during lectures and online. Owing to this kind of teaching, working professionals, homemakers, individuals with other responsibilities can pursue a degree anytime and anywhere while balancing their work-life commitments.
As stated earlier, the best way to learn anything is through practical implementation; which is the essence of this particular style of teaching. In the coming years, colleges will create opportunities where students can learn about the industry and also know how to apply that knowledge practically. With this method, students can close the gap between theory and practice and capture the complexities of the real-world by experiencing it in real-time.
Collaboration with corporates
According to industry leaders, management students lack the relevant skills required to successfully function within an organisation. To combat this shortcoming, institutes must collaborate with companies from across the business landscape. With this collaboration, corporates can share their inputs on course content, conduct informative sessions and industrial visits, and offer more internships. This will help B-Schools understand what the industry wants and how to nurture individuals to meet those demands.
Flexible curriculum personalised to students’ interests
MBA colleges have been offering conventional specialisations such as IT, Finance, and HR for years now. However, as the industry evolves, students' interests are changing as well. Hence, ten years from now, colleges are expected to create a flexible curriculum to match what their students want.
Focus on internationalisation and building globally relevant understanding
Companies are looking forward to conducting business on a global level. To do this, they will need professionals with an in-depth understanding of world trade and economy. To meet this demand, colleges are expected to design a curriculum that will help them understand how the world economy functions and how they can excel in it.
These six changes will help B-Schools nurture individuals whose expertise and skills are advanced, in-demand and relevant across the globe.
The writer is Director, Symbiosis Centre for Management and Human Resource Development, Pune