Biz-school students’ virtual classroom
Berkeley, Michigan, Virginia open a window to the future

By Ute Frey, Haas School of Business

11 September 2002 | MBA students at Berkeley’s Haas School of Business, the University of Michigan Business School, and the Darden School at the University of Virginia will share a virtual classroom this year, using full-motion video and Internet technology.

Each school will offer one course to MBA students at all three institutions. Just as, in the business world, strategic alliances bring together companies with complementary strengths, each school will offer cutting-edge course material in a specific area of expertise to students from all three schools. Class-preparation materials and research will be distributed over the Internet, and students will communicate with each other and with faculty via videoconference and in Internet chat rooms.

“These joint courses may be a window into the future of management education,” says Andrew Shogan, associate dean of instruction at the Haas School, “a future in which schools regularly team up or co-brand to offer their best courses to students and executives located at multiple sites around the world, and who need and want such training now.”

The Darden School’s class, on consulting, began Sept. 9 and includes 20 students each from Darden, Michigan, and Haas. “Consultants today need to be able to work in diverse teams, both on site and virtually,” says Professor Jeanne M. Liedtka, the course instructor. “At the same time, consulting firms need to operate seamlessly from multiple locations. We are going to replicate these requirements by organizing teams at each site, and having those teams work on a project that will be presented to their colleagues at the other schools via videoconference. We also will organize teams with participants from all three locations, who will utilize the Web to work together and make their presentations from three separate sites.”

In the spring, Haas School Assistant Professor Terry Odean will offer a course in behavioral finance. As a Haas School Ph.D. graduate in 1997, Odean started making national news when he proved that investors make decisions based on their feelings about a stock, rather than through any sort of rational thought process. This spring his students will study common aspects of people’s decision-making processes and their relevance to today’s managers. A substantial portion of the course will be devoted to how systematic departures from rationality affect financial markets and the welfare of investors.

The University of Michigan will determine this fall which course it will offer to the three partner schools in fall 2003.

This is the second time that the three business schools have partnered to share their teaching resources and to make them available to their MBA students. In 2000, the schools offered courses covering different aspects of e-business. Darden led cases in e-business innovations, Haas taught a course on financial issues in the Internet sector, and Michigan offered a course on strategically applying Internet technologies.


Home | Search | Archive | About | Contact | More News

Copyright 2002, The Regents of the University of California.
Produced and maintained by the Office of Public Affairs at UC Berkeley.

Comments? E-mail