PublicationsBusiness Education Forum

 

Business Education Forum Highlights
December 2002, Volume 57, Number 2

FORUM FEATURE
Stepping Out of the Spotlight: What Teachers Can Learn From Coaches - Coaches do exactly what teachers have to do: create optimum learning conditions and choose effective strategies to get peak performance from the "players." Coaches know a great deal about the learning process-students often credit their coaches with preparing them for life-and in this article they share that knowledge with business teachers. The article probes the worlds of sports and business coaching to identify performance strategies that are adaptable to the business classroom, such as clarifying a team mission, setting goals, keeping "fun in the fundamentals," and individualizing instruction.

BUSINESS SPOTLIGHT
Dallas Chamber of Commerce Executive Coaching Program: Applying Continuous Process Improvement to the Business of Educational Service Delivery - The aim of Texas Instruments' business/school partnership was higher than simply supplying computers to a disadvantaged public school population. TI wanted to foster systematic change that would improve leadership, teamwork, and communication at the school. This article chronicles the collaboration between a corporate VP and an elementary school principal, and their mutual mission to change the climate at Hotchkiss Elementary.

 

CURRICULUM FORUM

Accounting
Using an In-Class Demonstration to Enhance Understanding of Product-Costing Concepts - What does the manufacturing of "Gak," an elastic, Play-doh-like substance that children mold into shapes, have to do with a Managerial Accounting class? For the students in M. James and C. Blaszczynski's college class, who manufactured it, priced it, and analyzed its cost patterns, it meant learning firsthand the fundamentals of product cost behavior. The professors also provide formal survey results of their students' opinions about the hands-on lesson.

Basic Business
Economics Brought to Life - "Real-world" business problems are intriguing-How does one company succeed when others like it fold? Why didn't the economy, when it went into a recent slump, spiral down into deflation? This article advocates using case studies as a way of bringing economics to life and evaluating students using an alternative method known as performance assessment. It also guides teachers in the creation, development, and availability of good case studies.

Communication
Integrating Activities to Enhance the Development of Business Communication Skills - The instructors of this college communications class tried a new approach to standard material with markedly improved results. Instead of the traditional approach to skills assignments, like letter and report writing and oral presentation, they used an "integrated activities" approach. Students work in teams, role-playing positions in three companies: an association, an interior design firm, and a travel agency. Within their "jobs," they perform both traditional and innovative tasks, as well as develop interpersonal skills needed in the world of work. And they do it with a heightened enthusiasm for their schoolwork. This article details integrated activities and assesses their worth for use across the business curriculum.

International Business
Integrating International Business concepts and Matters of Diversity into the Business Education Curriculum - "Today, an everyday transaction [in a local business] may involve a Brazilian company-whose customer service employees live in Israel-that sells products made in Sweden…deliver[ed] through a Japanese freight company." This snippet from the article says it all about diversity in the workplace. Because business students' success in the global marketplace depends upon keeping current on international topics (technology, marketing, finance, politics, and culture), the authors argue for a place in every business curriculum for international business concepts. They provide extensive annotated resources for Dlabay's "Beyond the Basics" approach to international business.

Methods
10 Easy Steps to Online Success - While the debate about the efficacy of online instruction continues, few would disagree that its advantages guarantee its future as an academic institution. This article recognizes the critics' point that online courses given by untrained teachers can create an inconsistent quality of instruction. To address this issue, the authors detail 10 guiding principles for online course designers that will help ensure more reputable programs for distance learners.

Student Organizations
Business Student Organizations: Adviser Tips and Tricks - Student organizations have a great deal of support among students and faculty because they help foster students' professionalism, develop leadership, and improve communication skills. The challenges for members, as well as advisers, are recruiting and fund-raising. This article is a thorough compilation of suggestions for meeting those challenges, so that business students can experience the rewards of belonging to an organization.

Technology
Using Handheld Devices in Your Curriculum - Palm m500, Handspring Treo 180, Royal da Vinci DV3, and Sharp Zaurus SL5500. These intriguing high-tech brand names belong to objects that can fit in the palm of your hand. They are known as PDAs, or personal digital assistants, and with their proliferating use, students are changing the way they learn in the classroom. This article contains extensive information about the capabilities of PDAs, their multiple uses, and the advantages and disadvantages of these devices for classroom.