Value Of Experiential Learning In Business Management
Over the years, businesses in India have witnessed a rapid change in terms of geopolitical scenarios, technological advancements, and online marketing. In order to keep pace with this unprecedented rate of change, businesses are focusing on recruiting professionals with hands-on experience, who can make an immediate impact. Such a development poses a challenge for B-schools since they need to keep their MBA programs relevant in a very dynamic and competitive market.
Keeping the current business scenario in mind, IFIM has put great emphasis on experiential learning in its business curriculum. It’s a key differentiator from other standard management programs as IIFM combines traditional classroom teaching with various experiential courses. However, before discussing how experiential learning puts our students in an advantageous position, let’s take a look at what experiential learning means:
What Is Experiential Learning?
As the name suggests, experiential learning is the process of learning through experience, or more specifically, learning through reflection on actions performed. An example would be hands-on learning, where students gain knowledge or skills based on the professional activities they perform. It not only makes their education interesting but also acts as a change of pace from rote or didactic learning. Hence, experiential learning is always synonymous with free-choice, adventure, and situation-based learning.
Moreover, experiential learning focuses on individual education. It aims to broaden the learner’s mind by focusing on issues of high relevance in the context of learning. Plus, it’s a form of learning which is based outside the classroom. As a result, students become highly motivated to learn new things about their preferred specialization.
At IFIM, we focus on experiential learning through IBM Business Analytics Lab, Prabhudas Lilladher Lab, Bloomberg Terminal, Case Studies, Industry Projects, Industry Guest Lectures, Workshops, Simulations and CSR Projects, etc.
How Does Experiential Learning Benefit Management Students?
- Captures the complexity of the corporate world – While theoretical learning at classroom level shall always be a priority, B-schools are becoming increasingly open to inculcate experiential learning. It’s because students plunge themselves into a ‘live’ business environment. They have to solve real-life industrial projects by using their business acumen, based on the taught theoretical knowledge. This way, experiential learning captures the complexity of a corporate world, which isn’t possible with classroom learning. By submerging themselves into unfamiliar situations, management students gain competency in applying theoretical expertise in real-life business situations. As a result, B-schools are partnering with organizations to deliver collaborative and immersive learning experiences.
Furthermore, experiential learning focuses on management students to get out of their comfort zone and engage with business problems in a more effective way. It includes reading case studies, interacting with peers and industry leaders, interning at firms, etc. By involving themselves in these activities, students develop management, networking, and soft skills required to succeed in the corporate world.
- Impactful projects that shape management careers – The primary objective of experiential learning is to provide students with an immersive learning experience through industrial projects. These projects can do justice to the hard work of students, who toiled hard in their classrooms and delivered during their experiential learning program. It makes them feel industry ready and motivated to pursue career paths that will help them swiftly climb corporate ladders.
By experiencing practical know-how of their theoretical knowledge, students will eventually look to utilize their skills to be innovative leaders rather than just seeking financial rewards.
- An opportunity for recruitment – By partnering with organizations for their experiential learning programs, B-schools are responding to growing employer demand for critical thinking and problem-solving skills. On the other hand, experiential learning provides an incredible opportunity for students to create a great first impression on companies organizing these programs. In turn, recruiters look for students who have the potential to understand their products, market, and audience, and work on the assigned projects accordingly. In case students impress their respective organizations, they can get a pre-placement offer. Thus, the benefits of experiential learning range far and wide.
All the above benefits embody the value of experiential learning in business management. By incorporating this form of learning in our PGDM programs, it arms our students with the requisite skills and tools they need to succeed in their respective fields.