Exploring the integration of responsible management education in the business school courses through the lens of critical pedagogy: challenges and lessons.

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review

Abstract

Responding to the inherent challenges associated with the development and implementation of education for sustainability within existing business education, certain commentators call for the creation of innovative pedagogies and educational approaches to support integration of the principles of responsible management education (PRME) within the core curricula of business schools and management education-related institutions. This paper discusses a teaching initiative of introducing Model United Nations (MUN) as a classroom activity for Level 4 undergraduate students in a very large module. In our case, by ‘very large’ we mean a module with approximately 800 enrolled students. Model United Nations has been introduced in order to develop students’ critical thinking and analytical reasoning about sustainable development issues and thus to increase UG students’ awareness of how business people can act in a socially responsible way.

This paper explores teaching and learning practices facilitated by MUN through the lens of critical pedagogy. From a critical pedagogy perspective, education is fundamental to democracy and, therefore, pedagogical practices should contribute to the development of critical, self-reflective and knowledgeable citizens. A wide range of data including student focus groups, questionnaires, student feedback along with students’ reflective learning statements about their learning experience on the module have been collected and analysed in the framework of our research. Following voices of critical pedagogy scholars, we observed that “the classroom is no longer a safe space immune from the corporate and ideological battles” (Giroux, 2009, p.110). It can be suggested, that in those modules which involve large student numbers and teaching delivered in a standardised way in order to meet consistency requirements, students are increasingly disengaging with the subject matter. Our findings resonate with the broader observation of students’ passive behaviour in the class and even non-attendance of classes and seminars if they are not clearly linked to the final assessment task. It could be argued that a lack of personalised feedback and motivation only by the forthcoming assessment rather than critical engagement with the subject matter could contribute to students’ intellectual ‘anaesthesia’. This could also have a detrimental effect on teachers’ endeavours to develop students’ critical thinking and analytical reasoning about sustainable development issues in their classes. During the conference presentation we will share with the colleagues our insights about how we could address these concerns and also discuss examples of good practice.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusUnpublished - 25 Jun 2018
EventUK and Ireland PRME Conference: Inclusive Responsible Management Education in an Era of Precarity - Queen Mary University of London, London, United Kingdom
Duration: 25 Jun 201827 Jun 2018
Conference number: 5th

Conference

ConferenceUK and Ireland PRME Conference
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
CityLondon
Period25/06/1827/06/18

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