By: Ted Glenn, Ph.D., Professor of Public Administration and Program Coordinator at The Business School, Humber College
|Londes and Shulman|
Student-centred learning. We talk a lot about it, but all-too-often our efforts to put students at the centre of our professional focus fall woefully short. And the excuses we find over the course of a busy semester – not enough time in the day, scare resources and few supports are a few of the ones I hear, too often from my own mouth.
For the past two days, Humber colleagues Alain Londes, Melanie Shulman and myself have been attending IMC University of Applied Sciences Masters Days 2015 in Krems, Austria. It is an annual conference put on to benefit IMC master-level students by putting professors from partner institutions worldwide into IMC classrooms for two jam-packed days of lectures, workshops and interactive presentations. That’s right – a conference with faculty from around the globe brought in to benefit students. Talk about a commitment to student-centred learning!
This year, the continents are once again well-represented by the twenty-one faculty in attendance – for example, Sabine Janssen from the Netherlands did a great workshop on strategic problem-solving and business development, Tess Tan from Singapore challenged students to understand the changing role of international business ethics, Erik Vazquez Hernandez from Mexico lectured on how to optimize e-retail via social media, Sergey Chernikov from Russia engaged students to think about new business strategies to deal with changes in the world’s economy, and Fulbright scholar Mark Teachout showed students how to improve team performance.
I think we all agree that our time at Krems allowed us to extend the range of our academic community, learn about new topics, and see colleagues at their best in front of engaged students – a perspective we seldom get a chance to appreciate at home. And, at least for me this year, IMC Krems really exemplified what student-centred learning can and should be about.