Intensive Learning: GraduateStudents’ Perception and theImplications for Global Educators Prepared by: Henry Ho Hamline University, St Paul, USA
IntroductionStudents appear to want more interactiveclasses that engage student learning (Harasim, 1999;Ramsden, 2003).Business faculties have extensively practicedintensive or ‘block’ teaching in tertiaryeducation since the early 90s.Many researchers claimed that the outcomesof intensive learning are equivalent or betterthan with the traditional mode of delivery(Anastasi, 2007; Burton & Nesbit, 2005; Davies, 2006; Ho & Polonsky, 2009; Reardon etal., 2008).
This project investigates graduate businessstudents’ perceptions of intensive (i.e.,courses delivered in five weeks or less)delivery courses that they complete as partof their MBA degree at a mid-sizecontemporary university in Minnesota, USA.
Intensive LearningNon-traditional teaching has been defined using manydifferent names such as intensive, blockmode, accelerated and flexible (Scott, 1994; Daniel, 2000; Grant, 2001;Seamon, 2004; Burton & Nesbit, 2005).There have been a number of researchers who haveexplored the educational implication of runningintensive classes, with results suggesting that learningoutcomes are equivalent or better than the traditionalmode of delivery (Scott, 1994; Daniel, 2000; Grant, 2000; Seamon, 2004).The delivery of graduate marketing courses in intensivemode has not been examined previously and this is thefocus of this project.
Case StudyStudents involved in this research wereenrolled in a graduate marketing coursecalled Marketing Management (MBA8350).MBA8350 is a compulsory course for allstudents who enrolled in the MBA degree atHamline University in Minnesota.
Case StudyStudents who involved in this research wouldhave completed at least two semesters (eightintensive courses) of a six semester MBAdegree program.There were 49 students (separated into twocohorts) enrolled into MBA8350.Both cohorts were taught by the sameacademic to control for any variation inteaching styles, in addition the sameassessment structure was used to control forassessment variations.
Case Study There were five pieces of assessment in MBA8350: Activity Points Total Possible Total Each Possible4 One-page memos 5 203 Concept quizzes 10 30Marketing Analysis 30Study (Written)Marketing Analysis 10Study (Presentation)Class Participation 10 Total 100
Data Collection andMethodologyThe researcher collected data from studentswho enrolled in MBA8350 in the springsemester 2012.Students were asked to complete aquestionnaire survey that required about fiveminutes to complete, which wasadministered at the end of the final lecture.Students were asked a total of 15 questionsdeveloped by the researchers.
Data Collection andMethodologyMost of the questions concentrated on howstudents’ perceptions of the intensivemarketing course (MBA8350) havecontributed to their learning, as well as theperceived benefits associated with enrolling inthis intensive course.Students were also asked to indicate theirperception of whether attending the intensivecourse is more enjoyable and/or difficult ascompared with other business courses.Responses were based on a five point Likert
Results …There were 42 responses collected andsome responses were only partiallycompleted.In brief, the MBA students felt that intensivelearning was the same as the traditionalsemester long learning or more preferable.In particular they felt that there was moreopportunity for feedback and interaction withthe Instructor.
Results …In addition it required them to be moreefficient with their time .They did not believe that there was anydisadvantage to the intensive learning optionin terms of studying nor was the intensivemode more time consuming .They did not believe that there was anydisadvantage in the intensive more andoverall preferred this mode to traditionalsemester learning.
Results …At the same time, our students reported thatintensive learning is more satisfactory thanany other courses in their previous studiesvia traditional mode.
CONCLUSIONSDespite the overall positive results, this studyis limited by the fact that it only involves asmall number of graduate students within theHamline School of Business.This study offers momentum for the idea thatgraduate marketing courses that run in theintensive mode can indeed provide superiorlearning to what may be encountered in atraditional semester-length course.
CONCLUSIONSThe work presented here also illustrates thatstudents in intensive learning constantlysought for support from the instructor, just asin traditional semester.In other words, the instructor is also a keyingredient in the success or failure ofintensive teaching and learning.
Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org for any questions and/or feedbacks ... thank you