Developing Case Teaching Materials And Expertise
During this past week, a team from Babson has been managing and teaching the Banco de Chile – Babson College Chilean Entrepreneurship Educators Program – which involves 24 educators from 12 Chilean universities. The first face-to-face module in June, which explored the art and science of writing business cases, was led by Babson Professor Heidi Neck and included the participation of Babson President Len Schlesinger as an instructor in the program. Since that time the Chilean professors have been writing cases with the long-distance guidance of faculty at Babson. The second intensive face-to-face module – just completed – focused on teaching by the case method and development of a teaching note. All the Chilean professors presented abstracts of their case studies, and three cases were presented by their authors to the entire group. In addition the Babson faculty team also led a case discussion. These four case discussions served as the basis for action learning.
As in many other parts of the world, the lecture is the dominant teaching method in Chilean universities. Case teaching provides another powerful learning methodology – focusing particularly on the application of knowledge to real world situations as a basis for critical and creative thinking, analysis and decision-making. Earlier versions of this program have been conducted in Mexico and in Malaysia. From my perspective it’s amazing how much progress can be made by a group of highly capable and intensely engaged faculty in a relatively short period of time. It feels like in the last three days we completed three weeks (or maybe even three months) of development of case teaching materials and case teaching expertise.
Today we celebrated a milestone in this program with a luncheon bringing together the Chilean program participants, representatives of the program sponsor – Banco de Chile, the Babson faculty and staff team, and approximately twenty Babson alumni. Engagement in this kind of collaborative program truly makes the world feel more connected for all the participants.
Mark P. Rice, Frederic C. Hamilton Professor for Free Enterprise