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Classrooms Without Borders

February 18, 2010 — Floor plan drawing for Green boutique

Paralleling the changing paradigms in business, education is in the midst of a quantum leap forward and Anne Cecil, Design & Merchandising Program Director, wants her students to be prepared. Cecil, along with Anne Pierson-Smith, Assistant Professor in the Department of English at the City University of Hong Kong, taught a cross institutional course in Fashion Product Promotion (DMSR 326). Using technologies including webinars, blogs, threaded discussion, Twitter, Facebook, Skype, BBVista and Wimba live classroom, the professors brought students on opposite sides of the globe together in a virtual setting.

Students were divided into teams consisting of two Drexel students and three to four City University of Hong Kong students. Drexel students were assigned a shopping zone in Hong Kong and the Hong Kong students a site in the States. The students were then challenged to create a concept and promotional plan for a fashion product boutique in each city.

The first live classroom was a huge success and even sparked an impromptu conversation about wearing pajamas in public. While there are challenges to overcome such as time zones, term schedules, class size and cultural and language differences, Cecil and Pierson-Smith believe the global classroom, through effective direction and use of technology, will allow industry specialists, educational leaders and students to meet and collaborate no matter where they reside. Stay tuned for updates on this ongoing course and contact Anne Cecil at acc27@drexel.edu for more information.