April 12, 2018
Two business school professors, Ionela Bacain and Fabian Marks, attended International Masters Week at IMC University in Krems, Austria. IMC Krems University of Applied Sciences is one of our 17 strategic international partner universities which provide exchange opportunities for both students and professors.
Ionela and Fabian were among 14 professors from Canada, US, Mexico, Spain and Azerbaijan who presented to IMC Masters students on various business topics with a focus on Responsibility and Impact.
Ionela’s workshop on “Using Mini-Cases to teach Managerial Accounting” explored the use of mini-cases to teach Managerial Accounting concepts versus traditional lecturing and short directed textbook exercises. This approach incorporated student group work and one-on-one, student-professor interaction which enhances student engagement and participation along with improving critical thinking and problem-solving skills. Several managerial accounting concepts were presented in a case scenario which enabled students to improve their skills of analyzing, evaluating and proposing potential solutions along with the application of managerial accounting concepts in real case scenarios.
Feedback related to the workshop revealed that students strongly agreed that our mini-case approach motivated them to engage and understand how to apply concepts better and generated an increased interest in Managerial Accounting.
Fabian’s workshop focussed on “International Marketing to Low-Income Consumers.” Drawing on international marketing examples which Fabian worked on in Brazil, Dominican Republic, Haiti and El Salvador, as well as from examples he studied from South Africa, India, China and Sri Lanka, he shared his key learnings with students such as:
Fabian and Ionela’s workshops were very well received. Our applied learning approach was quite different in format and structure than the lecture format used by the other professors. The students rated our workshops highly, which was a great testament to Humber’s Applied Learning approach at all levels of tertiary education. We applied many of the tools we learned at Humber to build student engagement.
It was gratifying to see that we at Humber are on the right track, that Humber’s polytechnic approach to applied learning is relevant and well received by international students at all levels.
It was also refreshing to be in a classroom with students who have such a global mindset. As European countries are smaller, the students tend to be well travelled, speak multiple languages, and are quite adept at doing business internationally. We were left wondering to what extent could we adapt our material, our texts, our cases, our teaching style, our international cultural awareness to be more effective at helping our International and Canadian students get ready for our global business environment. This would require further exploration.