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Drexel Students and Professors Propose Innovations in Business Courses

May 20, 2013

Photo of the Architech competition's winning team
The winning team of the Classroom Architech contest Dr. Daniel Dorn (left), student David Hunt and Dr. Ed Nelling (right)

Three teams of Drexel University LeBow College of Business professors and students are dividing $30,000 in winnings for their proposed course innovations that take advantage of the technology and other enhancements featured in the College’s new 12-story academic center opening this fall.

More than 10 teams competed in the Classroom Architech contest. Each team in the competition consisted of two professors and one student, and each team’s winnings will be distributed evenly among the team members. Teams submitted proposals for innovations in at least two existing business courses. The winning innovations will be introduced into their respective courses for the 2013-14 academic year.

“Having professors and students together on the same teams was a bit of ‘reverse mentoring,’” said Frank Linnehan, the interim dean of Drexel University’s LeBow College of Business. “Our professors know their disciplines but it’s the students who really know what the technology is capable of. We asked students to advise their professors on how to get the most out of the new teaching tools and classrooms.”

First place was awarded to the team proposing to use interactive video conferencing to more closely connect undergraduate students who manage a portion of Drexel’s endowment with the investment professionals who provide feedback and advice to the students. The finance classes in “applied portfolio management” oversee investment decisions for the Dragon Fund, a $1 million pool within the University’s endowment.

Allowing students to make online presentations about their analyses and stock picks, in addition to in-person presentations, will expand the number of professional investment advisors who can participate, and the sessions will be recorded for later observation and critique by students and professors, according to Dr. Daniel Dorn, associate professor of finance, and Dr. Edward Nelling, professor of finance in LeBow College. The third member of their team was undergraduate student David Hunt.

Second place was awarded to Dr. Daniel Korschun, assistant professor of marketing and Stephen Joyce, assistant clinical professor of economic and international business. Along with undergraduate student Ryan Bertoldi, they proposed enhancing classroom instruction by having students identify moments in films, music or other entertainment that demonstrate business principles, and then showing and discussing those clips in class.

Third place went to professors Dr. Trina Larsen Andras, professor of marketing, and Larry Duke, assistant clinical professor of marketing, with doctoral student Brooke Reavey, for their proposal to use the new building’s behavioral lab to train students how to run focus groups and allow students to engage in role-play for classes that teach negotiating strategies.

Classrooms in the new building, Gerri C. LeBow Hall, will be equipped with video teleconferencing, the ability to make video recordings of lectures, on-screen notation capabilities and a full complement of computer, video playback and online access.


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