Evolving B School Structure With The Changing Needs

Dr. Asmita Chitnis, Director, Symbiosis Institute of International Business (SIIB)Dr. Asmita Chitnis is a postgraduate in Statistics and holds a Ph.D. degree in the field of Operations Management. At present, she is serving as the Director of Symbiosis Institute of International Business (SIIB), Pune, where she brings in 29+ years of academic and corporate training experience.

B-School education has always aimed at creating and teaching aspects of management to produce not only skilled individuals, but also qualified business leaders. This trend has primarily been observed in the last two decades, where the management education has seen tremendous growth in terms of gaining massive popularity among students. It is mainly due to the fact that management education, as a field is quite diverse, and students from different educational, social and economic backgrounds, who possess the competence can pursue it. The flexible curriculum in this field has undergone massive transformations over the years, in terms of the way in which the knowledge is delivered with a stress on more practical-based education.

How Pandemic of COVID-19 Affected Everyone?
With the current pandemic crises, people across the world are redefining their lives with new perspective and new normal. This unusual situation is forcing the business professionals' world over to think differently to survive through these crises, and of course to remain relevant.

As businesses all across are severely hit by lockdown, educational sector is no exception. Most governments around the world have temporarily closed educational institutions in an attempt to contain the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic. The current crisis has changed the
whole narrative of running the educational institute, its way of delivering classes, engaging students, and also enrolling new ones.

Gateway to the New-Age Learning Era
In order to sail through this, B-Schools are adopting various measures to keep up with the situation, while making sure that the lockdown does not hamper the academic progress of any of the students. Some of these measures include restructuring the course framework, focusing on personalized learning and preparing the students for future adversities.

Restructuring the course framework involves three significant aspects: programme structure; course content; and pedagogical approach. The program structure that the B-Schools are implementing is slowly moving from theory-based to application-based. With the advancement in technology, basic subjects of management are undergoing a sea change with the introduction of subjects like Digital Marketing, Behavioral Finance, HR Analytics, and many more.

Given the current situation, the content in the curriculum is getting further updated to bring in more flexibility and adaptability for the future business manager to face the demanding business situations. On the pedagogical side, more efforts are put in to develop online content in both asynchronous and synchronous mode for a better learning experience. Multiple creative approaches are being taken up so as to keep students engaged and interested.

As businesses all across are severely hit by lockdown, educational sector is no exception. Most governments around the world have temporarily closed educational institutions in an attempt to contain the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic

Flexibility in Learning
Another major thrust area in management education is flexible learning. The approach focuses on enabling students to grasp knowledge at their own pace as per their learning ability and patterns. Flexible learning pattern is more or less like a personalised approach that the B-Schools are bringing in to help students to deal with the changing educational routine during this situation.

Also, institutes are tuning into AI-enabled personalised learning tools that are tailor-made for different student making overall experience enriching and far more interesting. Professors are focusing on building an open classroom environment that promotes a systematic and participatory approach towards learning.

While the entire education ecosystem is struggling hard to survive through these difficult times, the evolutionary changes that the B-Schools are bringing in have been quite exemplary. Going forward, one can certainly hope that this fast-changing educational environment will improvise the overall study structure and motivate young minds to build a successful future.